Background

Since its founding, the Center has maintained a commitment to the study of ideas in history, culture, and politics. This commitment has taken several forms: retaining the centrality of federalism as a set of principles in an age of intergovernmental relations; advancing the understanding and empirical operationalization of political culture as a factor of politics and public policy; studying the covenant idea and its relationship to federalism in the history of political thought and action; examining the relationships among federalism, constitutionalism, and republicanism; and reflecting on the influence of liberty, freedom, and responsibility in the intellectual works of important political philosophers, theologians, statesmen, and literary figures. For Daniel J. Elazar’s writings on American political culture, see Publications on this site and http://www.jcpa.org/dje/index-apc.htm.

Activities

John Kincaid and Richard L. Cole developed an empirical measure of federal political culture and presented results in:

Richard L. Cole and John Kincaid. 2011. “Citizen Attitudes and Federal Political Culture in Canada, Mexico, and the United States.” In The Federal Idea: Essays in Honour of Ronald L. Watts, eds., Thomas J. Courchene, John R. Allan, Christian Leuprecht, and Nadia Verrelli, 225-245. Montreal & Kingston: McGill-Queen’s University Press.

Richard L. Cole, John Kincaid, and Alejandro Rodriguez. 2004. “Public Opinion on Federalism and Federal Political Culture in Canada, Mexico, and the United States, 2004.” Publius: The Journal of Federalism 34 (Summer 2004): 201-221.

“Freedom and Responsibility in the Works of Contemporary Authors of the American West,” a Liberty Fund Conference directed by Daniel J. Elazar, Denver, CO, September 14-17, 1999.

“Early Developments of Liberty in the Ancient Near East,” a Liberty Fund Conference directed by Daniel J. Elazar, Big Sky, MT, June 19 – 22, 1999.

“Liberty and Responsibility in the Life and Works of Albert Gallatin,” a Liberty Fund Conference directed by Daniel J. Elazar, Bloomington, IN, May 16 – 19, 1998.

“John Locke and Algernon Sidney: Brothers in Liberty? A Liberty Fund Conference directed by Daniel J. Elazar, Indianapolis, IN, February 26 – March 1, 1998.

“Freedom and Responsibility in the Writings of Mark Twain,” a Liberty Fund Conference directed by Daniel J. Elazar, Big Sky, MT, September 6 – 9, 1997.

“Early Development of Liberty in the Ancient Near East,” a Liberty Fund Conference directed by Daniel J. Elazar, Denver, CO, May 31 – June 3, 1997.

“Freedom and Responsibility in the Works of Willa Cather,” a Liberty Fund Conference directed by Daniel J. Elazar, Big Sky, MT, August 24 – 27, 1996.

“The Bible in the Political Thought of John Locke,” a Liberty Fund Conference directed by Daniel J. Elazar, Indianapolis, IN, May 20 – 23, 1995.

“Liberty and Responsibility in the Works of Nathaniel Hawthorne,” a Liberty Fund Conference directed by Daniel J. Elazar, Denver, CO, November 19 – 22, 1994.

“The Bible in the Political Thought of Spinoza,” a Liberty Fund Conference directed by Daniel J. Elazar, San Antonio, TX, January 29 – February 2, 1994.

“The Frontier Thesis of Frederick Jackson Turner, 1893-1993, and Its Implications for Liberty,” a Liberty Fund Conference directed by Daniel J. Elazar, Denver, CO, June 12 – 15, 1993.

“Liberty and Responsibility in the Works of Bernard Malamud,” a Liberty Fund Conference directed by Daniel J. Elazar, Minneapolis, MN, September 12 – 15, 1992.

“The Bible and the Political Thought of Thomas Hobbes,” a Liberty Fund Conference directed by Daniel J. Elazar, Bloomington, IN, November 16 – 18, 1991.

“Liberty and Responsibility in American Western Novels,” a Liberty Fund Conference directed by Daniel J. Elazar, Santa Fe, NM, May 4 – 7, 1991.

“State Political Subcultures: Further Research,” a special Issue of Publius: The Journal of Federalism 21:2 (Spring 1991), edited by Frederick W. Wirt and including research from Center projects. This issue was a follow on from a special issue on “The Study of American Political Culture and Its Subcultures,” Publius: The Journal of Federalism 10:2 (Spring 1980) edited by John Kincaid.

“Federalism and Liberty in the Writings of Johannes Althusius,” a Liberty Fund Conference directed by Daniel J. Elazar, Philadelphia, PA, November 10 – 12, 1990.

“Freedom and Responsibility in the Writings of Joseph Conrad,” a Liberty Fund Conference directed by Daniel J. Elazar, Philadelphia, PA, May 20 – 22, 1989.

“Freedom and Responsibility in the Writings of Sinclair Lewis,” a Liberty Fund Conference directed by Daniel J. Elazar, Philadelphia, PA, February 24 – 26, 1988.

“Freedom and Responsibility in the Writings of Mark Twain,” a Liberty Fund Conference directed by Daniel J. Elazar, Philadelphia, PA, April 20 – 22, 1986.

“Land Ownership and Liberty in American Society,” a Liberty Fund Conference directed by Daniel J. Elazar, Philadelphia, PA, March 31-April 2, 1985. Revised conference papers appeared in Publius: The Journal of Federalism 18:4 (Fall 1988).

Pilot project of the Workshop on Political Culture to develop and test empirical measures of American political cultures and subcultures, with Terry Clark, Daniel Elazar, John Kincaid, Joel Lieske, Ben Mokry, Robert Savage, and John Winkle, 1985. An informal meeting chaired by Aaron Wildavsky was later held at the 1985 APSA meeting and included most of these workshop participants along with Ivo Duchacek, Harry Eckstein, and Thomas Hueglin.

“Liberty and Responsibility in the Writings of Thornton Wilder,” a Liberty Fund Conference directed by Daniel J. Elazar, Philadelphia, PA, February 3 – 5, 1985.

“The Meaning of American Pluralism,” a Liberty Fund Conference directed by Daniel J. Elazar, Philadelphia, PA, May 16 – 18, 1982.

John Kincaid edited Political Culture, Public Policy and the American States. Philadelphia, PA: ISHI Press, 1982.

John Kincaid published “Dimensions and Effects of America’s Political Cultures,” Journal of American Culture 5 (Fall 1982): 84-92.

John Kincaid, ed., “The Study of American Political Culture and its Subcultures,” special issue of Publius 10:2 (Spring 1980).

Dialogue on Political Culture (Fall 1978) as part of the Center’s Tenth Anniversary Dialogue Series, Dialogue on Federal Theory in 1977 as part of the Center’s Tenth Anniversary Dialogue Series.

The Center, working with Robert Savage of the University of Arkansas, began in 1976 a pilot State Political Culture Project for mapping the political cultures of American counties. One outgrowth from this project was Joel Lieske’s “Regional Subcultures of the United States: A New Measure for Understanding Social and Political Behavior,” Journal of Politics 55:4 (November, 1993): 888-913.