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


A Heretic At Duke Divinity School

by Peter Berkowitzvia Wall Street Journal
Sunday, May 21, 2017

The dean brings charges of ‘unprofessional conduct’ for a vigorous defense of free inquiry.

Analysis and Commentary

What 'Fascism' Talk Really Accomplishes

by Peter Berkowitzvia Real Clear Politics
Sunday, May 7, 2017

The allegation that Donald Trump’s presidency reflects the rise—or resurgence—of fascism in America has little basis in fact. But it is a sure way to amplify the scorn for Republicans gripping many on the left and the resentment of media and academic elites roiling many on the right. Such talk magnifies polarization and further debases American political discourse.


True Health-Care Reform Hinges On Doctors' Redefined Role

by Peter Berkowitzvia Real Clear Politics
Tuesday, May 2, 2017

The controversy over the future of health care in the United States is momentous. But the narrowness of the debate—which swirls around coverage, costs, and who pays—obscures other grave threats to the American health-care system.

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Before Push Comes to Shove

by Peter Berkowitzvia Hoover Digest
Monday, April 24, 2017

What the president needs to learn—fast. 


Moderation Is In Short Supply -- And Much Needed

by Peter Berkowitzvia Real Clear Politics
Saturday, April 22, 2017

Moderation—the tendency to avoid the extremes and strike sensible balances—does not appear to be President Trump’s strong suit. That so much of the opposition to him is bereft of this much-disparaged but essential virtue poses an even more alarming threat to the long-term public interest.

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The Task Of The Public Intellectual

by Peter Berkowitzvia Defining Ideas (Hoover Institution)
Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Amid democratic hustle and bustle and free market churn, it is the job of the thinker and writer to illuminate the public interest and conserve freedom. 

Analysis and Commentary

The Illusory Quest for a Vital American Center

by Peter Berkowitzvia Mosaic Magazine
Thursday, April 6, 2017

What a new history of American civil religion gets wrong.


A Lawsuit Accuses Yale Of Censoring Even Inoffensive Ideas

by Peter Berkowitzvia Wall Street Journal
Sunday, April 2, 2017

A class essay condemning rape was ‘unnecessarily provocative,’ the Title IX coordinator allegedly said.


U.S. Must Build On Short-Term Steps In Israeli Peace Effort

by Peter Berkowitzvia Real Clear Politics
Tuesday, March 28, 2017

President Donald Trump’s penchant for entwining reckless utterances and sound pronouncements was on vivid display at his joint White House press conference last month with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. It is still too early to determine which will predominate in administration policy toward the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. 

Analysis and Commentary

Yale Lawsuit Spotlights Title IX, Sexual Assault 'Hysteria'

by Peter Berkowitzvia Real Clear Politics
Saturday, March 4, 2017

In an October 26, 2016, letter to the Wall Street Journal, Professor David M. Post, chair of Yale’s University-Wide Committee on Sexual Misconduct, defended the Ivy League institution’s “procedures for addressing sexual misconduct.” But his formulation betrayed him.