The Academy of Philosophy & Letters

"Men of intemperate minds cannot be free. Their passions forge their fetters." – Edmund Burke

2023 Conference Schedule

“Picking Up the Pieces: Rebuilding a Viable Culture”

June 1-3, 2023

College Park Marriott

Thursday, June 1


STUDENT PANEL “New Perspectives on Rebuilding Our Social Institutions”

Chair: Harry Scherer, The American Conservative

“Strauss, Voegelin, and Modernity” 

            Adam Kear, Hillsdale College

“The Fall of the Social Virtues: Analyzing the Positive Rights Revolution’s Attack on Virtue and the Restoration of this Republican Foundation”

            Jason Chahyadi, Patrick Henry College

“Plato, Ruskin, and Modern Economy” 

            Micah Paul Veillon, Georgia Tech

“The Party’s Over: Rebuilding Strong Political Parties” 

            Nicholas Callaghan, Hillsdale College

5:00-6:00pm Registration

6:00-7:00pm Reception/Cash Bar

            Welcome: Luke C. Sheahan, President, Academy of Philosophy and Letters

7:00pm-9:00pm Dinner

Dinner Lecture

            Introduction: Shaun Rieley, The American Conservative

“Democracy is Beautiful: Rebuilding Conservatism as if the People Matter”

            Chris Owen, Emeritus Professor of History, Northeastern State University

9:00-11:00pm Reception

Friday, June 2

8:00-8:30am Late Registration


PANEL 1: “Rebuilding Institutions: Religion, Education, Place”

Chair: Rev. C.R. Wiley, Westminster Presbyterian Church

“New Norms He Gave Us: The Church as Ordering Social Convention” 

            Ben Peterson, Abilene Christian University

“Where the Rubber Meets the Road: Strong Towns Policy as an Implementation of Traditionalist Ideals” 

            Jason Jewell, Faulkner University

“The Sovereign Self and the Dissolution of Place”

            Wendy Piper, Independent Scholar

“Educating in the Permanent Things: Russell Kirk on the Renewal of Primary and Secondary Schooling”

            Darrell Falconburg, Faulkner University

10:30-10:45am Break


PANEL 2: After Chapter 11: Rebuilding the American Right”

Chair: Ryan Holston, Virginia Military Institute

“‘Picking up the pieces’ Through International Collaborations? ‘Common human ground’ and differences in the geographies of 20th Century conservative political thought.” 

            Christian Sellar, University of Mississippi

“Fighting the Long Defeat: Lessons From Tolkien for Times of Social Decay” 

            Zachary Yost, The Yost Post

“‘Democracy,’ by and for the Elites” 

            Emily Finley, Humanitas

“Robert Nisbet and the Non-Libertarian Case for Decentralization”

            Michael Lucchese, Pipe Creek Consulting

12:45-1:00 pm Break

1:00-2:30pm LUNCH


PANEL 3: “Elites and Society”

Chair, Eric Adler, University of Maryland

“Irving Babbitt’s Aristocratic Democracy” 

            Michael Federici, Middle Tennessee State University

“Elite Replacement Theory” 

            Ethan Alexander-Davey, Campbell University

“John Adams’ ‘Defence of Constitutions’: A New-Old Method in the History of Political Philosophy” 

            Matthew T. Cantirino, Assumption University

“Did Tocqueville Foresee America’s Current Malaise?”

            Gene Callahan, New York University

4:30pm-6:00pm Meeting of the Board of Directors and Officers

6:00pm-7:00pm Cash Bar

7:00pm-9:00pm Dinner 

Dinner Lecture

            Introduction: Michael Federici, Middle Tennessee State University

“The Power of Property”

            Mark Mitchell, Patrick Henry College

9:00-11:00pm Reception

Saturday, June 3

8:30-10:00am Member Meeting Breakfast

            For APL members only


PANEL 4: “Rebuilding Cities and Society”

Chair: Justin Litke, The Catholic University of America

“Rebuilding a Humane Economy:  A Roepkian Approach with a Cautionary Tale” 

            William Byrne, St. Johns University

“The Agrarians Shall Rise Again”

            Allan C. Carlson, Touchstone Magazine

“A Tale of Two Florentines – the Contrasting Visions of Dante and Machiavelli” 

            Matt Carpenter, Trinity Reformed Church

“Do We Have It in Our Power?” 

            John Grove, Liberty Fund

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