What is traditionalism? A collection

A reader writes:

I have been devouring your site with fascination for the last few days. I have a question: is there a definition of what you mean by “traditionalism” on your site? I’ve looked but haven’t found it if it’s there.

I do not have a single overarching article defining and explaining traditionalism. But the reader’s questions spurred me to create this entry which is the next best thing: a collection of VFR articles touching on traditionalism from a variety of angles. It will also be displayed permanently on the main page under “From VFR’s archives.”


The most important point for traditionalists
Discovering traditionalism—and defining the liberalism it opposes [put this in relation to article on Fraser and liberalism]
Traditionalism—what and why? [By Jim Kalb]
The Idea of a Traditionalist Society [by Jim Kalb. “Conservatives complain very forcefully, but aren’t as good at saying what they want. Unless we can say what we want, however, it will be hard to make clear to others or even ourselves what we’re doing or why anyone should go along with it.” See if this fits with my article on Fraser and liberalism.]
What is the order of being?
The need for a traditionalist alternative to liberalism [October 2007. Many ideas from readers.]
The need for a traditionalist alternative to liberalism, abridged

Blogger disputes; literary quotations; and a discussion of modernism and liberalism [a definition of modernity and modernism; how liberalism is the outcome of them; and how traditionalism means resisting them.]
The family as key to traditionalism [Includes Frank Meyer’s definition of conservatism.]
Louis de Bonald, a radical traditionalist thinker [My 1992 review of Bonald’s On Divorce, which was my first articulation of a traditionalist conservative perspective as distinct from the typical American conservative perspective.]

Resisting the rule of liberalism; the traditionalist agenda

The only way the West can be saved [Good explanation of what I mean by liberalism, with main theme that only terrible sufferings will induce Westerners to give it up.]
Chertoff tells DHS never to say Islamic [“for conservatives to say that the thing that prevents us from defending ourselves from [Islam] is the liberal belief in equality and non-discrimination would require the conservatives to think, and it would cost them something, because it would set them against the sacred beliefs of our liberal society. But it would also accomplish something very great, namely that for the first time they would be opposing liberalism in reality, instead of going through the eternal shadow-play of opposing liberalism.”]

Two scenarios of the end of liberalism: mass apostasy, or a Western civil war to the death
George Fraser, the ruin of Britain, and the possibility of true resistance to liberalism [How criticizing political correctness is inadequate. We must understand what liberalism is, what liberals really believe in and seek, how they seek the destruction of tradition, then by standing for tradition we stand against liberalism.]
The extreme radicalism of homosexual “marriage” [contains a discussion about how the dominance of liberalism can be ended, and why this is so difficult. I say we must let liberalism destroy itself. Alan Roebuck then says that we can evangelize society against liberalism.]
Hanson: Obama has set back race relations by a generation [I reply, Yay!, and then present a scenario of an infinitely better America.]
Two complementary statements that lead to the possibility of Western survival [Yes, liberalism will stop any rollback of Islam; but the ruin brought by liberalism will make liberals give up their liberaism, and then they will be ready to act.]
Modernity, modernism, and their traditionalist counterpart [Brief summation]

Posted by Lawrence Auster at September 03, 2008 12:23 PM | Send

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