WASHINGTON, June 20 ? It has red states and blond pundits; home schoolers and The Human Life Review; originalists, monetarists, federalists and evangelists; and no shortage of people named Kristol.
Now American conservatism can claim another mark of distinction: an encyclopedia all its own.
It is a big deal, in terms literal ? 997 pages ? and metaphorical. Few insults have stung the movement’s thinkers as much as the barb from Lionel Trilling, the literary critic, who said conservatives had no ideas, “just irritable mental gestures.”
A half-century later, 251 contributors have weighed in, not so irritably, with a four-pound response.