The Rise and Fall of Anglo-America

Review of Metaphysics 58 (1):184-185 (2004)

In an erudite philosophical and sociological analysis, Kaufmann provides an extended illustration for anyone who needs to be reminded of the fact that ideas have consequences. If the United States once possessed an ethnic core, one may say, an Anglo-Protestant soul, sometime between 1920 and 1970, it lost that soul, succumbing to a liberal virus that sapped its inner strength. Coupled with an immigration policy which led to the relative demographic decline of the once-dominant WASP, the Anglo-Protestant doctrinal retreat has produced a different America from that of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The causes are multiple, but Kaufmann focuses on cultural and ideological changes originating within the Anglo-Protestant intellectual community as mainline Protestantism moved from its early New England moorings to a left-liberal egalitarian phase. Kaufmann chronicles the decline, beginning in the period 1905– 18 to its culmination in 1970, presenting the decline as the inevitable result of the alliance of liberal Protestants with the New York intellectuals of the Village Renaissance period.
Keywords Catholic Tradition  Contemporary Philosophy  General Interest
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ISBN(s) 0034-6632
DOI revmetaph200458190
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