The Meaning of Conservative

In his letter opposing Touchstone’s use of the word conservative to describe believing Christians (see below), Mr. Arthur Powers raises an important question:

What word can we use that will not be misunderstood? With him, we would not want anyone to think that we held all that is now covered by the word conservative. Many ideas called conservative disrupt the things we wish to conserve—the repellent libertarianism of Ayn Rand, for example, and certain forms of nationalism.

Conservative is not the perfect word, but it may still be the best one. I edited an Episcopal magazine for about 15 years, and I . . .


This article is only available to subscribers.

Login to Touchstone Online

• Subscribers: Manage your subscription account here.


• Not a subscriber or wish to renew your subscription? Subscribe to Touchstone today for full online access. Over 30 years of publishing!


personal subscriptions

Purchase
Online Subscription

Get a one-year full-access subscription to the Touchstone online archives including pdf downloads for only $19.95. That's only $1.66 per month!


RENEW your online subscription

Purchase Print &
Online Subscription

Get six issues (one year) of Touchstone PLUS full online access including pdf downloads for only $39.95. That's only $3.34 per month!


RENEW your print/online
subscription

gift subscriptions

GIVE Print &
Online Subscription

Give six issues (one year) of Touchstone PLUS full online access including pdf downloads for the reduced rate of $29.95. That's only $2.50 per month!


RENEW your gift subscription

Transactions will be processed on a secure server.

bulk subscriptions

Order Touchstone subscriptions in bulk and save $10 per sub! Each subscription includes 6 issues of Touchstone plus full online access to touchstonemag.com—including archives, videos, and pdf downloads of recent issues for only $29.95 each! Great for churches or study groups.

kindle subscription

OR get a subscription to Touchstone to read on your Kindle for only $1.99 per month! (This option is KINDLE ONLY and does not include either print or online.)

Your subscription goes a long way to ensure that Touchstone is able to continue its mission of publishing quality Christian articles and commentary.

calling all readers

Please Donate

"There are magazines worth reading but few worth saving . . . Touchstone is just such a magazine."
—Alice von Hildebrand

"Here we do not concede one square millimeter of territory to falsehood, folly, contemporary sentimentality, or fashion. We speak the truth, and let God be our judge. . . . Touchstone is the one committedly Christian conservative journal."
—Anthony Esolen, Touchstone senior editor

Support Touchstone


more from the online archives

20.7—September 2007

Retaking Mars Hill

Paul Didn’t Build Bridges to Popular Culture by Russell D. Moore

30.1—Jan/Feb 2017

The Heart of Paradise

The Godly Hierarchies of Love & Marriage by Diane Woerner

32.1—January/February 2019

Is Patriarchy Inevitable?

Answers Secular & Religious by Allan C. Carlson