Denison Lecture Series Speaker Examines Anti-American Sentiment
Date of Event: March 20, 2003
Posted: March 10, 2003
GRANVILLE -- The Denison Lecture Series presents conservative speaker Dinesh D'Souza at 7:30 p.m., Thursday (March 20) in Slayter Auditorium, speaking on why America is both so appealing and so disgusting to youth in other countries. D'Souza's lecture topic,What's So Great About America, is based on his book by the same title and is very popular since the events of September 11. The lecture is free and open to the public.
D'Souza describes three "schools" of anti-Americanism. He divides anti-American sentiment among Western Europe, East Asia and the Islamic nations. D'Souza's book examines various critiques of America, including the Islamic critique and the multicultural critique. It makes the case for an intelligent patriotism, based on an understanding of what makes America unique in the world.
In a speech last fall at the University of California Santa Barbara, D'Souza said intellectual Islamic critics of America say it is flawed because it places a higher social value on freedom than on virtue. Virtue is, D'Souza said, a more important value than liberty. What Islamic critics miss, he said, is that virtue can only exist if there is liberty, that virtue is only virtue if it is freely chosen. D'Souza, who emigrated from India more than 20 years ago, said that the ability to choose was what attracted him to America and he wished the president made arguments like this more clearly.
D'Souza emphasizes, however, that both liberals and conservatives are important for America to function as a democracy, D'Souza said. "What are the liberal values? Emphasize peace and try to solve problems through negotiations, social justice, don't leave people behind, compassion; in social policy, autonomy, allow people to live as they wish," D'Souza said. "What are conservative values? Patriotism, security, prosperity, civic virtue. A society needs both."
A Dartmouth graduate in 1983, he was a senior domestic policy analyst at the White House for the Reagan administration from 1987 to 1988 and is currently a fellow at the Hoover Institute, a conservative think-tank at Stanford University. He is a Young America's Foundation speaker and speaks at about 30 colleges a year.
Some of D'Souza's earlier books include The New York Times bestsellerIlliberal Education(1991) andThe End of Racism(1995),Ronald Reagan: How an Ordinary Man Became an Extraordinary Leader(1997), andThe Virtue of Prosperity: Finding Values in an Age of Techno Affluence(2000). He has also been featured onGood Morning America, Nightline, Politically Incorrect,andThis Week with David Brinkley.
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