In The Conservative Heart, Arthur C. Brooks contends that after years of focusing on economic growth and traditional social values, it is time for a new kind of conservatism—one that helps the vulnerable without mortgaging our children’s future. In Brooks’ daring vision, this conservative movement fights poverty, promotes equal opportunity, celebrates earned success, and values spiritual enlightenment. It is an inclusive movement with a positive agenda to help people lead happier, more hopeful, and more satisfied lives.
One of the country’s leading scholars and policy thinkers, Brooks has considered these issues for decades. Drawing on years of research on the sources of happiness, he asserts that what people most need are four “institutions of meaning”—faith, family, community, and meaningful work. These are not only the foundations of personal wellbeing, but also the necessary means for building a better nation.
Combining reporting, original research, and case studies, and free of vituperative politics, The Conservative Heart is an intelligent and compelling manifesto for renewal. Clear, well-reasoned, and accessible, it is a welcome new strategy for disconsolate conservatives looking for fresh, actionable ideas to address the serious problems confronting us today and to reclaim our future, and for politically independent citizens who believe that neither political party addresses their needs or concerns.
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About the Author
Table of Contents
Introduction The Conservative Heart: How We Have Changed the World-But Can't Seem to Get Our Footing 1
Chapter 1 America's Pursuit of Happiness: Why It Is the Central Expression of the Conservative Heart 25
Chapter 2 Why America Hasn't Won the War on Poverty: Spending Trillions Without Moving the Needle Where It Matters Most 53
Chapter 3 Pushing the Bucket: How Honest Work Ennobles and Elevates Us 81
Chapter 4 Lessons from an Indian Slum and an Austrian Ghost Town: Inspiration from a Society on the Make and a Cautionary Tale from One That Disappeared 107
Chapter 5 A Conservative Social Justice Agenda: A Better Way to Fight Poverty 131
Chapter 6 From Protest Movement of Social Movement: A Road Map for the New Right 159
Chapter 7 The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Conservatives: How to Talk So Americans Will Listen 179