Foreign Relations & International Law

The Lawfare Podcast: Cold War Intellectuals and the Making of Our Times

Jack Goldsmith, Samuel Moyn
Friday, September 8, 2023, 8:00 AM
How and why Cold War liberals transform liberalism?

Published by The Lawfare Institute
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Liberalism today is under attack, as it often has been. Samuel Moyn, the Chancellor Kent Professor of Law and History at Yale University, believes that liberalism's failures, and a path to its better future, can be discerned through a study of how liberal intellectuals reacted to the rise of fascism and Nazism during the World War II period, and especially to Soviet communism during the Cold War. Jack Goldsmith sat down to talk to Moyn about his new book on the topic, “Liberalism Against Itself: Cold War Intellectuals and the Making of Our Times.” They discussed how and why Cold War liberals such as Isaiah Berlin and Gertrude Himmelfarb transformed liberalism, and why he thinks the transformation has had deleterious effects on U.S. foreign and domestic policy. They also discussed the aims of intellectual history and the relationship between his project and recent anti-liberal projects from the right.

Jack Goldsmith is the Learned Hand Professor at Harvard Law School, co-founder of Lawfare, and a Non-Resident Senior Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute. Before coming to Harvard, Professor Goldsmith served as Assistant Attorney General, Office of Legal Counsel from 2003-2004, and Special Counsel to the Department of Defense from 2002-2003.
Samuel Moyn is a professor of law at Yale Law School.

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