Peter Berkowitz

Tad and Dianne Taube Senior Fellow
Awards and Honors:

Peter Berkowitz is the Tad and Dianne Taube Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University. During 2019, he is serving on the State Department’s Policy Planning Staff in the office of the secretary. He is a 2017 winner of the Bradley Prize. At Hoover, he is a member of the Military History/Contemporary Conflict Working Group. In addition, he serves as dean of studies for the Public Interest Fellowship, and teaches for the Tikvah Fund in the United States and in Israel. 

He studies and writes about, among other things, constitutional government, conservatism and progressivism in the United States, liberal education, national security and law, and Middle East politics.

He is the author of Constitutional Conservatism: Liberty, Self-Government, and Political Moderation (Hoover Institution Press, 2013); Israel and the Struggle over the International Laws of War (Hoover Institution Press, 2012); Virtue and the Making of Modern Liberalism (Princeton University Press, 1999); and Nietzsche: The Ethics of an Immoralist (Harvard University Press, 1995).

He is the editor of seven collections of essays on political ideas and institutions published by the Hoover Institution: Renewing the American Constitutional Tradition (2014); Future Challenges in National Security and Law (2010); The Future of American Intelligence (2005); Terrorism, the Laws of War, and the Constitution: Debating the Enemy Combatant Cases (2005); Varieties of Conservatism in America (2004); Varieties of Progressivism in America (2004); and Never a Matter of Indifference: Sustaining Virtue in a Free Republic (2003).

He is a contributor at RealClearPolitics, and has written hundreds of articles,essays and reviews on a range of subjects for a variety of publications, including The American InterestAmerican Political Science ReviewThe AtlanticThe Chronicle of Higher EducationClaremont Review of BooksCommentaryFirst ThingsForbes.comHaaretzThe Jerusalem PostLondon Review of BooksNational JournalNational ReviewThe New CriterionThe New RepublicPolicy ReviewPoliticoThe Public InterestThe Times Literary SupplementThe Wall Street JournalThe Washington PostThe Weekly StandardThe Wilson Quarterly, and the Yale Law Journal.

In addition to teaching regularly in the United States and Israel, Dr. Berkowitz has led seminars on the principles of freedom and the American constitutional tradition for students from Burma at the George W. Bush Presidential Center and for Korean students at Underwood International College at Yonsei University in Seoul, South Korea.

He taught constitutional law and jurisprudence at George Mason University School of Law from 1999 to 2006, and political philosophy in the department of government at Harvard University from 1990 to 1999.

He holds a JD and a PhD in political science from Yale University, an MA in philosophy from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and a BA in English literature from Swarthmore College.

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Recent Commentary


The Scalia Lecture: “Liberal Education, Law, And Liberal Democracy”

by Peter Berkowitzvia Harvard Law
Friday, February 9, 2018

Hoover Institution fellow Peter Berkowitz discusses liberal education, law, and democracy.


A Summons to Save Democracy

by Peter Berkowitzvia Real Clear Politics
Saturday, January 20, 2018

A sense of impending doom is in the air. The left’s best and brightest proclaim that President Trump is racist, mentally ill, lawless, and should be removed from office at the first opportunity. Many in the rank-and-file right believe that the media elites, entrenched government bureaucrats, and political establishments of both parties -- whom they elected Trump to rein in -- are demonstrating their determination to overturn the 2016 presidential election.

Analysis and Commentary

Bridging Conservative Divides

by Peter Berkowitzvia Real Clear Politics
Thursday, January 4, 2018

Donald Trump’s disruptive presidency has exacerbated a long-festering intra-conservative controversy about American conservatism’s core principles and purposes. So big and diffuse has the conservative world become since the 1960s -- when William F. Buckley’s National Review set the agenda -- that thoughtful right-wingers themselves doubt that anything so discrete and organized as a movement exists today. They suspect, moreover, that the ambition to revive one represents a distracting exercise in nostalgia.


Exploring The Bonds Of Judaism And Conservatism

by Peter Berkowitzvia Real Clear Politics
Friday, December 8, 2017

Last Sunday, in New York City, the Jewish Leadership Conference held its “Inaugural Conference on Jews and Conservatism.” The one-day event attracted some 400 participants from around the country and from Canada, Mexico, and Israel.


A Plan To Start Disentangling Israel And The Palestinians

by Peter Berkowitzvia Wall Street Journal
Thursday, November 30, 2017
Comprehensive solutions to the conflict are probably out of reach. Incremental improvements aren’t.

What Elites Still Don't Understand About Populism

by Peter Berkowitzvia Real Clear Politics
Monday, November 27, 2017

According to prominent members of the progressive elite — and a few members of the conservative elite — the election of Donald Trump signaled the rise in the United States of fascism or racism or both.


Calling Out The Tellers Of Anti-Israel Lies

by Peter Berkowitzvia Real Clear Politics
Thursday, October 26, 2017

Media coverage of, and academic writings about, Israel routinely betray the intellectual integrity that should govern both. Israel has paid a steep price; the Palestinians perhaps even more so.

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“Education Emancipates”

by Peter Berkowitzvia Hoover Digest
Monday, October 23, 2017

Hoover fellow Peter Berkowitz ponders the pursuit of understanding. An excerpt from his Bradley Prize speech. 


James Comey And Robert Mueller Imperil The Rule Of Law

by Peter Berkowitzvia Wall Street Journal
Monday, October 23, 2017

The former FBI directors tend to investigate Republicans far more zealously than Democrats.


What Colleges Must Do To Promote Diversity -- Of Thought

by Peter Berkowitzvia Real Clear Politics
Thursday, October 12, 2017

Another high-profile act of campus censorship -- amid a coast-to-coast spate of student assaults on free speech the last two years -- occurred in late September at the College of William & Mary. Undergraduates there shut down a lecture on “Students and the First Amendment” by chanting, among other things, “Liberalism is white supremacy.” President Taylor Reveley promptly issued a statement affirming the college’s “powerful commitment to the free play of ideas.” That did little to disturb the eerie silence of most faculty and administrators around the country in the face of free speech’s travails.