Politics

Daniel Bell and the Need for the Sacred

When he died in January 2011, Daniel Bell (b. 1919) was one of the most famous social scientists of his time. Remarkably, he was a conservative sociologist. Conservatives are those who have a disposition to conserve. They have a respect for the past, for tradition, for continuity.[1] Bell was a conservative in this sense. He even owned to being a conservative, though he also qualified that assertion. He was, he said, a socialist in economics, a liberal in politics and a conservative in culture. That qualification itself needs some qualification. The world of the university, where he spent much of…

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