Roger Scruton: America

presented by

The Center for American Culture and Ideas, the American Enterprise Institute, the Georgetown Institute for the Study of Markets and Ethics, and the Ethics & Public Policy Center

This conference addresses the work of the philosopher and EPPC Senior Fellow Sir Roger Scruton from an American perspective. The event presents an array of perspectives on the various avenues of his writings, what they might mean for American culture, and their potential future influence on the nation. Speakers will discuss topics such as the arts, religion, popular culture, and ethics as they explore Sir Roger’s philosophies, persona, and legacy. The conference honors his memory and engages with his prominence as a cultural thinker.

This event is made possible by a grant from the Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation and the support of the American Enterprise Institute, the Georgetown Institute for the Study of Markets and Ethics, the Ethics & Public Policy Center, the Roger Scruton Legacy Foundation, the Russell Kirk Center for Cultural Renewal, the Foundation for the Future of Classical Music, and the National Civic Art Society.

For questions about the Roger Scruton: America conference, please contact [email protected].


Sunday May 19, 2024

9:00–9:30 AM: Coffee and Check-In

9:30–9:40 AM: Daniel Asia, Introduction to Conference

9:40–11:30 AM: Panel 1—Moderator Daniel Asia

Dominic Green, “Atlantic Crossings: Roger Scruton, Christopher Hitchens, Paul Johnson”

Justin Shubow, “Roger Scruton’s Philosophy of Architecture”

Fisher Derderian, “A New Artistic Agenda: A Scrutonian Vision for Contemporary Art”

11:30–11:50 AM: Break

11:50 AM–1:00 PM: Panel 2—Moderator Jeff Nelson

Ferenc Hörcher, “Scruton on the Conservatism of the Founding Fathers”

Daniel Cullen, “Mere Conservatism: Roger Scruton and America”

Hussein Aboubakr Mansour, “Navigating the Crossroads: Scruton’s Legacy and the Challenge of Third World Intellectualism”

1:00–2:30 PM: Lunch

2:30–4:00 PM: Panel 3—Moderator Mitchell Muncy

Daniel Asia, “Roger Scruton: on Music and High Culture”

James R. Harrigan, “Pop Culture: Why Scruton Got it Wrong”

Monday May 20, 2024

The livestream of the conference on May 20th can be found here.

11:30–11:35 AM: Yuval Levin, Introduction

11:35 AM–1:00 PM: Julian Schwarz, Concert and Talk

1:00–2:00 PM: Lunch (will be provided for all conference attendees)

2:00–3:45 PM: Panel 4—Moderator Yuval Levin

Daniel J. Mahoney, “Scientism and the Assault on Common Life”

James Bryson, “Religion and Human Flourishing in America and the Modern World.”

Phillip Magness, “Postmodernism, Critical Theory, and other Fashionable Nonsense: Measuring the New Left turn in Academia”

3:45–4:00 PM: Break

4:00–4:25 PM: Andrew Balio, “Roger and the Everyman”

4:25–4:30 PM: Daniel Asia, Closing Remarks


Daniel Asia is President of The Center for American Culture and Ideas (CACI) and Professor Emeritus at the University of Arizona. He is a composer, conductor, and author. Asia has won numerous awards and fellowships, including a Meet The Composer/ Reader’s Digest Consortium Commission, a Fulbright Arts Award Fellowship, a Guggenheim Fellowship, four NEA Composers Grants, an M. B. Rockefeller Grant, an Aaron Copland Fund for Music Grant, McDowell Colony and Tanglewood Fellowships, ASCAP and BMI composition prizes, and a DAAD Fellowship for study in the Federal Republic of Germany. Elliott Hurwitt wrote in his Schwann Opus review of the composer’s Ivory, “Daniel Asia is a genuine creative spirit, an excellent composer . . . He is a welcome addition to the roster of our strongest group of living composers.” As a conductor, Asia has worked with leading orchestras and contemporary ensembles, including the Phoenix Symphony, Brooklyn Philharmonic, Northwest Chamber Orchestra, San Francisco Contemporary Chamber Players, Lontano, Endymion Ensemble, and the Indiana University/Bloomington New Music Ensemble. Mr. Asia is the founder and Co-Music Director of the New York-based contemporary ensemble Musical Elements, which has performed in all the major halls of New York. After receiving his BA from Hampshire College, Mr. Asia attended the Yale School of Music, receiving a Master of Music Degree. He was Assistant Professor at the Oberlin Conservatory from 1981 to 1986 and taught at the University of Arizona for 35 years. Asia’s music appears on the Summit, New World, and Albany record labels.

Andrew Balio is Principal Trumpet of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and the founder of the Foundation for the Future of Classical Music. As a founding fellow of FFCM, Roger Scruton wrote Music as an Art (Bloomsbury Publishing, 2018). Formerly Principal Trumpet of the Israel Philharmonic, Balio has appeared as soloist with various orchestras in Europe, the US, South America, and Asia under the batons of noted conductors Mehta, Venzago, Herbig, Temirkanov, Rozhdestvensky, Lintu, Stenz Bergman, and McGeegan. His Carnegie Hall solo debut came in 2013 in the company of the Moscow Chamber Orchestra and Maestro Constantine Orbelian. He has served on the board of the Academy of Philosophy and Letters and presented papers there. 

James Bryson teaches philosophy at Ralston College and is the Director of the MA in the Humanities. He held positions at McGill, Cambridge, and the Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich. Dr. Bryson has published widely on philosophy, theology, and literature. He holds an MPhil and PhD from Cambridge University in Theology and Religious Studies, with a special focus on Philosophical Theology and the Philosophy of Religion, a BA in Classics and Early Modern Studies from the University of King’s College, and an MA in Classics from Dalhousie University.  He has edited a book on the thought of the late Sir Roger Scruton, sometime Visitor of Ralston College, titled The Religious Philosophy of Roger Scruton (Bloomsbury). His research interests include the Platonic tradition longue durée, Cambridge Platonism, and German Idealism.

Daniel Cullen is Professor of Philosophy and directs the Project for the Study of Liberal Democracy, a program supporting teaching, scholarship and critical discussion of the principles of constitutional government and the philosophical sources of those principles in the Western intellectual tradition. He is Senior Fellow for Constitutional Studies at the Jack Miller Center for Teaching America’s Constitutional Principles and History, and he serves on the Center’s Academic Council. He is the author of Freedom in Rousseau′s Political Philosophy, and has published various essays on Rousseau, Montaigne, democratic theory, liberal education and most recently, on the political philosophy of Roger Scruton. His most recent book is Liberal Democracy and Liberal Education, which he edited and co-authored. He is currently writing a book on the philosophy of Roger Scruton.

Fisher Derderian is the Founder and Executive Director of the Roger Scruton Legacy Foundation. He met Sir Roger as a student in the MA Philosophy Programme at the University of Buckingham and the idea for the RSLF was subsequently conceived at a tutorial with Scruton. Fisher currently resides in Orange County with his wife, Maxine, and their three children. He serves as a member of the Arts Commission for the City of Costa Mesa. Fisher holds a BA in Politics, Philosophy and Economics from The King’s College NYC and a MA in Philosophy from the University of Buckingham.

Dominic Green is a historian, critic and columnist. He is a Contributor to The Wall Street Journal, a columnist for The Washington Examiner, a Senior Fellow at the Center for the Study of America and the West at the Foreign Policy Research Institute (where he cohosts the First Draft podcast with Robert D. Kaplan), and a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society and the Royal Society of Arts. He writes regularly for The New Criterion, The Spectator, The Daily Telegraph and The Literary Review, and was previously editor-in-chief of The Spectator’s U.S. edition. He is the author of five books, including The Double Life of Dr. Lopez: Spies, Shakespeare and the Plot to Poison Elizabeth I, Three Empires on the Nile: The Victorian Jihad, 1869–1899, and The Religious Revolution: The Birth of Modern Spirituality, 1848–1898, and has taught at Brandeis University, Boston College, and Hillsdale College, where he was the 2023 Pulliam Fellow in Journalism.

James R. Harrigan is the Senior Editor at the American Institute for Economic Research, and Distinguished Fellow at the Center for American Culture and Ideas. He is also co-host of the Words & Numbers podcast. He was formerly Managing Director of the Center for Philosophy of Freedom at the University of Arizona, Dean of the American University of Iraq-Sulaimani, and Director of Academic Programs at the Institute for Humane Studies and Strata, where he was also Senior Research Fellow. He has written extensively for the popular press, with articles appearing everywhere from the Wall Street Journal to USA Today. He is also co-author of Cooperation & Coercion. His current work focuses on popular culture.

Ferenc Hörcher is a political philosopher, historian of political thought and philosopher of art. He studied in Budapest (Hungary), Oxford (UK) and Brussels/Leuven (Belgium). He is director of the Research Institute of Politics and Government and senior researcher at the Institute of Philosophy of the Hungarian Academy of Science. He was visitng professor at the Jagiellonian University, Kraków (Poland) and the Babes-Bolyai University in Cluj-Napoca (Kolozsvár, Romania). He researched in Vienna (Austria), Göttingen (Germany), Wassenaar (Holland), Cambridge (UK), Edinburgh (UK) and at Notre Dame University (USA). His reseach interests include: conservatism and liberalism, the history of early modern political thought, classical Hungarian political thought, early modern and contemporary philosophy of art.

Phillip W. Magness is an economic historian specializing in the “long” 19th-century United States, as well as general macroeconomic trends. He is a leading expert on black colonization during the Civil War era, and its sometimes-strained relationship with the African-American emigrationist movement of the same period. He studies the political economy of slavery in the Atlantic world, and particularly its relationship to public policy. He is author of The 1619 Project: A Critique, Cracks in the Ivory Tower: The Moral Mess of Higher Education (with Jason Brennan), and others. Magness holds a B.A. in Political Science from the University of St. Thomas in Houston, Texas. He obtained his MPP and Ph.D. from George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, specializing in policy history. He has taught at Berry College, George Mason University, and American University in the Washington, D.C. region. He is currently the David J. Theroux Chair in Political Economy at the Independent Institute.

Daniel J. Mahoney is a professor emeritus at Assumption University, a senior fellow at the Claremont Institute, and a senior writer at Law and Liberty. The author of over three hundred introductions, books, articles, and book reviews, he has written extensively on statesmanship, French political thought, the art and political thought of Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, conservatism, religion and politics, and various themes in political philosophy. His most recent books are Recovering Politics, Civilization, and the Soul: Essays on Pierre Manent and Roger Scruton (2022), The Conservative Foundations of the Liberal Order (2011), The Other Solzhenitsyn (2014, reissued in 2020), The Idol of Our Age: How the Religion of Humanity Subverts Christianity (Encounter Books, 2018), and The Statesman as Thinker: Portraits of Greatness, Courage, and Moderation (2022). He has written extensively for the public prints. His next book, The Persistence of the Ideological Lie: The Totalitarian Impulse Then and Now, will be published by Encounter Books in the spring of 2025.

Hussein Aboubakr Mansour is an Egyptian-American intellectual and author with a career focused on Arab political thought, Arab intellectual history, and the globalization of revolutionary radicalism, based in Washington, D.C. He has made important contributions to understanding the intellectual and political dynamics within the Arab world and their intersections with global issues. In the realm of Western conservatism, he is poised to offer profound insights into the relationships between Third World intellectuals and identity politics, exploring their implications for the evolution of both Western and Arab thought. Through his expertise, Mansour continues to provide original and insightful analyses, enriching the ongoing dialogue around these critical and contemporary issues. Previously, he served as Assistant Professor for Hebrew language and culture at the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, California, and his writings have appeared in Commentary, Tablet, Mosaic, and other publications.

Joshua Daniel Nichols is a seasoned and in-demand composer of art music, a podcast host, a philosopher, and a teacher. Recent compositions includes large-scale works for piano such as Variations on Hatikvah, Metropolis, and large ensembles such as Hansel und Gretel or Chorale for wind ensemble, and What Tongue Can Tell? for chamber ensemble and choir. Joshua’s Petit Moments Musicaux won Ariel Recording’s 9th Piano Composition Competition. Dr. Nichols the host of The Cultured Mind Podcast on arts, culture, and ideas. He current book project deals with how to listen to music in addition to writing new music for the Center for American Culture and Ideas, where he is an Artistic Fellow. Joshua studied music at Belhaven University, Mississippi College, Florida Atlantic University, and the University of Arizona (D.M.A. Composition). His music can be heard on Summit Records and is reviewed (with critical acclaim) in Fanfare Magazine.

Julian Schwarz serves as Associate Professor of Cello at Shenandoah Conservatory of Shenandoah University (Winchester, VA), and on the artist faculty of NYU’s Steinhardt School of Music. Faculty appointments include artist-in-residence at the Lunenburg Academy of Music Performance (Nova Scotia, Canada), faculty teaching assistant to Joel Krosnick at The Juilliard School, and artist-In-residence at the “pianoSonoma” Festival. As a writer, he has contributed frequently to Strings Magazine’s Artist Blog, has written learner’s guides for The Violin Channel, and has edited a series of Ernest Bloch editions with written prefaces for Carl Fischer Publishing.

Justin Shubow is President of the National Civic Art Society, a nonprofit organization headquartered in Washington, D.C. that promotes the classical tradition in public art and architecture. He is former Chairman of the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts, an independent federal agency comprising seven presidential appointees who are the aesthetic guardians of Washington, D.C. Shubow has testified in Congress on topics such as the future of the National Mall and the design of the Dwight D. Eisenhower Memorial. He is the author of The Gehry Towers over Eisenhower: The National Civic Art Society Report on the Eisenhower Memorial, a critical examination of the memorial’s competition, design, and agency approval. He has published architectural criticism at Forbes online, First ThingsPublic DiscourseThe Washington Post, and The Weekly Standard.  Shubow is a former editor at Forward newspaper and Commentary magazine, and is a recipient of a Robert Novak Journalism Fellowship.  He has delivered talks on architecture and other subjects at the U.S. Department of State, American Enterprise Institute, Baylor University, Colorado College, Hamilton College, and the Universities of Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Virginia, and others. Shubow received a B.A. from Columbia University, a J.D. from Yale Law School, and completed four years of study in the University of Michigan’s Ph.D. program in philosophy; he has taught philosophy courses as an instructor at the University of Michigan and Yale College. He is a member of the Board of Advisors of the Roger Scruton Legacy Foundation and the Board of Academic Advisors of the Alexander Hamilton Institute for the Study of Western Civilization.