Mar 5, 2019
Conservative thinkers from Russell Kirk to Irving Kristol to the Founding Fathers have, at best, cast a wary eye towards cities. And across the country today, Leftist safe havens are often found in dense, urban areas. Does conservatism only thrive in small towns? And, if so, what does conservatism have to say for city life? Should conservatives abandon cities in hopes of a renewal of rural America? Or might there be a way to forge a path that both respects cities as cities and cultivates traditional virtues?
Joining us from Israel is Saving Elephant’s first international guest, Avi Woolf. Avi is a translator and editor whose work has been published in Arc Digital, Commentary, National Review, and The Bulwark. He is chief editor of the online Medium publication Conservative Pathways, and hopes to help forge a path for a conservatism which is relevant for the 21st century while not abandoning the best of past wisdom.
In a four-part series appearing in Arc Digital, Avi laid out a detailed blueprint for how conservatism might be applied to cities. A true conservative, Avi cautions that, while a “thin” understanding of conservatism might provide some value to cities, what’s sorely needed is a traditional conservatism that seeks to restore institutions and communities in our urban centers. To do this, Avi recommends focusing on four broad conservative principles: