Harvey C. Mansfield

Senior Fellow
Research Team: 
Virtues Task Force (inactive)Member

Harvey C. Mansfield is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and the William R. Kenan Jr. Professor of Government at Harvard University, where he has taught for more than forty years. Mansfield is a recipient of the 2011 Bradley Prize. He has held Guggenheim and National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowships, has been a fellow at the National Humanities Center, and in 2004 received the National Humanities Medal.

He is the author of studies of Aristotle, Burke, Machiavelli, Tocqueville, Hobbes, constitutional government, and, most recently, manliness. He is a self-described Straussian; some of his most notable students include Andrew Sullivan, Alan Keyes, Bill Kristol, James R. Stoner Jr., Nathan Tarcov, Clifford Orwin, Mark Blitz, Paul Cantor, Delba Winthrop, Arthur Melzer, Jerry Weinberger, and James Ceaser.

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Recent Commentary

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Are All Men Created Equal?

by Harvey C. Mansfieldvia Defining Ideas
Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Progressives want to redistribute wealth, but their ideas about equality are incoherent. 

Lincoln Memorial
Analysis and Commentary

Our Parties, Part Two

by Harvey C. Mansfieldvia City Journal
Thursday, June 11, 2015

Our parties, as liberal and conservative, oppose each other over progress in the drive toward ever-greater equality.

Analysis and Commentary

Give Michelle Obama A Break

by Harvey C. Mansfieldvia The Wall Street Journal
Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Conservatives have been giving first lady Michelle Obama a hard time over her commencement speech at Tuskegee University on May 9. They denounce her complaints of continuing racism in America while recalling outrages long past. They wonder why she said nothing of the problem of black criminality. They scorn her unwillingness to acknowledge the privilege she enjoyed from attending Princeton and Harvard. Yet the speech had much merit that conservatives should appreciate.

Analysis and Commentary

Our Parties, Part One

by Harvey C. Mansfieldvia City Journal
Thursday, January 22, 2015

Our parties are the Democrats and the Republicans as electoral and governing bodies, liberals and conservatives in ways of thinking. Increasingly, Democrats are liberals and Republicans are conservatives, the phenomenon known as polarization, by which we more and more divide ourselves politically, in our parties, by our ways of thinking. We tend to think as partisans facing opponents.

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The Contradiction That Rules Feminism

by Harvey C. Mansfieldvia Defining Ideas
Thursday, December 18, 2014

Are women strong and independent or weak and vulnerable? Feminists can’t decide.

Leadership Concept
Analysis and Commentary

Book Review: 'The Myth of the Strong Leader' by Archie Brown

by Harvey C. Mansfieldvia Wall Street Journal
Friday, May 2, 2014

It is a pleasure to find a book on political leadership that imposes no theories or models but studies actual political leaders, dozens of them from many countries, in a historical survey from the beginning of the 20th century.


Obama vs Romney

What Did the Founders Think They Were Doing?

by Harvey C. Mansfieldvia Hoover Digest
Friday, January 25, 2013

Why do we vote, and what do we get for our trouble? By Harvey C. Mansfield.

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Blank Section (Placeholder)Analysis and Commentary

Are You Smarter Than a Freshman?

by Harvey C. Mansfieldvia Defining Ideas
Thursday, August 30, 2012

What political philosophy has to say about elections.

James Q. Wilson accepting the Bradley Prize in 2007

A Teacher of Character

by Harvey C. Mansfieldvia Hoover Digest
Monday, August 13, 2012

James Q. Wilson was a modest man of outsize achievements—a professor and a lifelong student of human nature. By Harvey C. Mansfield.

US Political Parties
In the News

Democracy Without Politics?

by Harvey C. Mansfieldvia Defining Ideas (Hoover Institution)
Wednesday, March 14, 2012

America thrives on an openness that has its limits...