Paving the way for Reagan: Journals of conservative opinion and the crystallization of Republican foreign policy 1964-1980

Laurence R Jurdem, Fordham University

Abstract

During the sixteen years that followed the defeat of Barry Goldwater in the 1964 presidential election, the publications Human Events, National Review, and Commentary were critical in assisting Conservative members of the GOP to define or redefine their views on key issues that were shaping events at home as well as abroad. Those who wrote for the journals of Conservative opinion believed that American foreign policy was in a state of paralysis. The critique was made even more powerful as commentators on the Right connected the crisis in U.S. diplomacy to fundamental flaws they believed existed in the country’s domestic agenda, initiated by the social and economic programs of Presidents Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, and Carter. Right wing pundits contended that the social turbulence in America caused by frustration and uncertainty over the war in Vietnam, Lyndon B. Johnson’s “Great Society,” and the campaign for minority rights had contributed to America’s allies questioning if the nation had the will to continue to prosecute the Cold War. In the years between 1964 and 1980, the journals of Conservative opinion provided ideological clarification on important national issues that played a fundamental role in reviving the political fortunes of the American Right, culminating in the election of Ronald Reagan.^

Subject Area

American history|Modern history|Political science

Recommended Citation

Jurdem, Laurence R, "Paving the way for Reagan: Journals of conservative opinion and the crystallization of Republican foreign policy 1964-1980" (2015). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI3727920.
http://fordham.bepress.com/dissertations/AAI3727920

Share

COinS