fogel, James Burnham, Reinhold Niebuhr,nStefan Possony, Thomas Molnar,nand Frank Meyer. Most of thesenthinkers, Gottfried argues, assimilatednHegehan elements through their formalneducation in Europe or indirectiynthrough exposure to the Hegelian elementsnof Marxism during their involvementnas Communists. Hegeliannthemes emerge in their writings despitentheir frequent and explicit polemicsnagainst Hegelianism.nThe genius of Gottfried’s work isnthat he transmutes what at first appearsnto be an obscure or even trivial expeditionnin intellectual archaeology into anmajor contribution to contemporarynconservative thought, one that seeks tonresolve the dilemma between the relativistnimplications of historicism andnthe radical thrust of metaphysical absolutism.n”Historicists,” writes Gottfried,nand among them Hegel, havensometimes treated moral andnintellectual truths as beingnrelative to particular epochsnand cultures and thus fated tonvanish in a changing world.nYet, this exaggerated emphasisnon historical change does notnrepresent the whole ofnhistoricist thinking. Manynhistoricists, including Hegel,nhave stressed historicalncontinuity more than change.nThey have also presentednhistory as a vehicle for teachingnand testing values withoutnascribing the origin of moralitynto a changing historicalnprocess.nGottfried’s defense of this proposition,nof a “value-centered” or ethical historicism,nin contrast to the relativismnconventionally associated with historicism,noffers a response both to historicistsnas well as to the antihistoricalnuniversalism of the Straussian schoolnand “the largely hand-to-mouth politicalnphilosophy devised by the neoconservatives.”nParticularly severe on Strauss andnhis disciples for their critique of historicism,nGottfried accuses them of annantihistorical philistinism that “blur[s]ndistinctions between their own modernnvalues and the values of earlier generations.”nAt the same time, he points tonthe historicist conservative thought ofnsuch scholars as Claes Ryn, who “haventried to clarify how ‘the transcendentnmoral order becomes historically immanentnand is experienced by man innparticular good actions.'”nThe relevance of Gottfried’s worknlies in more than its importance to thenfundamental philosophical problemsnof the contemporary right, for he arguesnin his final chapter that the abandonmentnof historical and traditionalistnthought by much of the Americannright in recent years in “the total secularizationnof the conservative modernistnoutlook,” in pragmatic politicalnmovements, policy activism, preoccupationnwith antihistorical Lockeann”rights,” “democratic capitalism,” andndemocratist globalism has resulted innthe derailment of serious conservatismnand the alienation of conservativesnfrom the particular traditions of theirnown historical order. Although stronglyncritical of the paganism of Alain denBenoist for its anti-American, pro-nSoviet, anti-Christian, and anti-Judaicncontent, Gottfried praises Benoist fornseriously considering “what may bentoday the chief obstacle to historicalnconservatism: the disappearance orncontinuing radicalization of those culturalnand social institutions whosengrowth and survival conservatives innthe past contemplated with pride.”nGottfried concludes his study ofnAmerican conservatism on a cautiouslynpessimistic note, a refreshing contrastnto the bubbly optimism of NewtnGingrich and other Howdy Doodles ofnthe “conservative renaissance.” Althoughnthe intellectual resources existnfor a historical conservatism—“a philosophynof order based on historicallynvalidated traditions that are made tonendure amid change”—the culturalnground for its political efflorescencenare weak, as “the American socialnorder becomes increasingly identifiednwith postmodern tendencies—for example,nfeminism, secularism, andngovernmentally mandated equality.”n”The passing of the historicist traditionnANTITRUST POLICY IN AnFREE SOCIETYnI • -..’ n”•jyvy-yvrtSF^iy-fj’nHirf’n-in•.”/..’nJoseph’D. Reed ‘nDavid C. Button andnTim OzennenYale BrozennDominicl< T. ArmentanonF. M. Scherern$5.00 PAPERBOUNDnWrite for our free catalog. All orders include ancomplimentary subscription to monthlynImprimis essay series.nHILLSDALE COLLEGE PRESSnHillsdale, Michigan 49242nnnJULY 1987/21n