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Download The Death of Conservatism Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Death of Conservatism Audiobook, by Sam Tanenhaus Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (134 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Sam Tanenhaus Narrator: Alan Sklar Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: September 2009 ISBN: 9781400183654
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Sam Tanenhaus’s essay “Conservatism Is Dead” prompted intense discussion and debate when it was published in the New Republic in the first days of Barack Obama’s presidency. Now Tanenhaus, a leading authority on modern politics, has expanded his argument into a sweeping history of the American conservative movement. For seventy-five years, he argues, the Right has been split between two factions: consensus-driven “realists,” who believe in the virtue of government and its power to adjust to changing conditions, and movement “revanchists,” who distrust government and society—and often find themselves at war with America itself.

Eventually, Tanenhaus writes, the revanchists prevailed, and the result is the decadent “movement conservatism” of today, a defunct ideology that is “profoundly and defiantly unconservative—in its arguments and ideas, its tactics and strategies, above all in its vision.”

But there is hope for conservatism. It resides in the examples of pragmatic leaders like Dwight Eisenhower and Ronald Reagan and thinkers like Whittaker Chambers and William F. Buckley Jr. Each came to understand that the true role of conservatism is not to advance a narrow ideological agenda but to engage in a serious dialogue with liberalism and join with it in upholding “the politics of stability.” Conservatives today need to rediscover the roots of this honorable tradition. It is their only route back to the center of American politics.

At once succinct and detailed, penetrating and nuanced, The Death of Conservatism is a must-listen for Americans of any political persuasion.

Download and start listening now!

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Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Adam | 2/2/2014

    " Really a book-length essay collection by a neighbor and fellow journalist colleague, but there's nothing light-weight about it. It really opened my eyes to the "true" conservatism, which has little to do with the reactionary turf you usually associate the label with. A deeply cogent argument about why we need political engagement among those with differing views. Well done, and highly recommended if you want to understand American politics today. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Adam | 1/18/2014

    " This was a far more detailed and subtle look at politicing than normally appeals to me. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Esteban del Mal | 1/6/2014

    " Always was a sucker for a good title. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Kathleen | 12/23/2013

    " An essay that should have remained one. Dry and not that engaging. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 arieswym | 7/10/2013

    " Started off dense but last two thirds flew by. Lays out very clear examples of conservatives demonstrating similar behavior to what we currently see against President Obama. And these examples go back to FDR, so it's not a new phenomenon. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 David Guthrie | 3/6/2013

    " I like Sam Tanenhaus. He's one of my favorite Commie, Pinko, lefties. However his book seems to ignore that the left is just as out of touch, as the right has become, with midde America. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Pat | 6/27/2012

    " More of an essay than a book. Not very compelling reading, but a good overall summary of conservatism over the past 80 years. Most definitely written subjectively from a left-center perspective, the title reflects more of the writer's hope than the reality. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Pjtibbetts | 5/23/2012

    " I saw Tanenhaus on Bill Moyers, he had some thoughtful things to say, figured I'd give his book a crack. It's good stuff - not quite the fire-breathing left-wing rhetoric you'd expect based on the title. Rather, it's a calmly-told history of the conservative movement from the New Deal onward. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Pat | 2/8/2012

    " Well . . . we can only hope. Another good book that helps explain the right-wing insanity of 2009. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Brad | 9/9/2011

    " Not persuasive, barely coherent. Simply not good. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Truck Smith | 9/8/2011

    " Good analysis of the way what he calls 'movement' conservatives strayed from, redefined conservatism during the past thirty years. Cautionary tale for liberals. Ultimately power and/or the pursuit of power corrupts. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kevin | 9/5/2011

    " I read this short book when it came out a couple of years ago and then against over the last two days. The election only confirmed what Tanenhaus wrote. I wish that my all of my conservative friends would read this instead of listening to Rush and Hannity. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sean Chick | 1/26/2011

    " A very thoughtful book that is unfortunately mistitled. If anything it is about how conservatives have lost their way in a nation that is becoming conservative in the Burke tradition. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Pat | 3/11/2010

    " More of an essay than a book. Not very compelling reading, but a good overall summary of conservatism over the past 80 years. Most definitely written subjectively from a left-center perspective, the title reflects more of the writer's hope than the reality. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 David | 2/23/2010

    " I like Sam Tanenhaus. He's one of my favorite Commie, Pinko, lefties. However his book seems to ignore that the left is just as out of touch, as the right has become, with midde America. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Pat | 10/22/2009

    " Well . . . we can only hope. Another good book that helps explain the right-wing insanity of 2009. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Truck | 10/21/2009

    " Good analysis of the way what he calls 'movement' conservatives strayed from, redefined conservatism during the past thirty years. Cautionary tale for liberals. Ultimately power and/or the pursuit of power corrupts. "

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About the Author

Sam Tanenhaus is the editor of both the New York Times Book Review and the “Week in Review” section of the Times. From 1999 to 2004 he was a contributing editor at Vanity Fair, where he often wrote on politics. His work has also appeared in the New York Times Magazine, New Republic, New York Review of Books, and many other publications.

About the Narrator

Alan Sklar, a graduate of Dartmouth, has excelled in his career as a freelance voice actor. He began narrating audiobooks in 1996, winning seven AudioFile Earphones Awards and earning several “Best Voice” awards. He has also worked as a stage actor and as a promo announcer at WPIX-TV in New York City. His dream is to be an opera singer, a role for which he hones his bass-baritone operatic skills in the upstairs shower of his home.