A Time to Build: From Family and Community to Congress and the Campus, How Recommitting to Our Institutions Can Revive the American Dream

A Time to Build: From Family and Community to Congress and the Campus, How Recommitting to Our Institutions Can Revive the American Dream Details

A leading conservative intellectual argues that to renew America we must recommit to our institutions

Americans are living through a social crisis. Our politics is polarized and bitterly divided. Culture wars rage on campus, in the media, social media, and other arenas of our common life. And for too many Americans, alienation can descend into despair, weakening families and communities and even driving an explosion of opioid abuse.


Left and right alike have responded with populist anger at our institutions, and use only metaphors of destruction to describe the path forward: cleaning house, draining swamps. But, as Yuval Levin argues, this is a misguided prescription, rooted in a defective diagnosis. The social crisis we confront is defined not by an oppressive presence but by a debilitating absence of the forces that unite us and militate against alienation.


As Levin argues, now is not a time to tear down, but rather to build and rebuild by committing ourselves to the institutions around us. From the military to churches, from families to schools, these institutions provide the forms and structures we need to be free. By taking concrete steps to help them be more trustworthy, we can renew the ties that bind Americans to one another.


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Title:A Time to Build: From Family and Community to Congress and the Campus, How Recommitting to Our Institutions Can Revive the American Dream
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    A Time to Build: From Family and Community to Congress and the Campus, How Recommitting to Our Institutions Can Revive the American Dream Reviews

  • Michael

    I recently heard this author speaking on NPR, then followed up with a longer interview on a podcast. Intrigued, I bought his book and enjoyed it. It's not long (a little more than 200 pages). My only ...

  • Brian Denton

    In his new book, A Time to Build, scholar Yuval Levin identifies the hollowing out and decay of our institutions as the primary cause of contemporary American civic corruption. According to Levin inst...

  • Heath Salzman

    Reading this book reminds me of why I am a conservative. Levine highlights the best of the Burkean tradition to propose a the solution to the societal fragmentation that we are experiencing today. In ...

  • Kevin

    If I was choosing a benevolent dictator, I think Yuval Levin would be my choice. Brilliant, deep and balanced. If you want to better understand where we are as a country and what we can do to change f...

  • Ivan

    Yuval Levin digs deeper into what he explored in his book ‘The Fractured Republic.’ He speaks my institutional love language. Keen analysis on some of the cultural fracture we’re observing and h...

  • Allison

    Levin writes “We all require formation, and the weak are often oppressed by the strong. But which is the primary problem? Which would need to be taken first in order to enable us to address the othe...

  • Joseph L.

    Watch a detailed review along with my favorite ideas and takeaways at:https://youtu.be/QzAJqBsqdc4...

  • Patrick C.

    I became interested in this book after hearing an interview with the author on NPR Morning Edition ("When Institutions Are Used As Stages, People Lose Trust, Book Argues" 01/30/2020 - https://www.npr....

  • Bob

    The election of Trump occasioned a strange new genre in conservative commentary. The US is led by a corrupt gameshow host, & buffoonish authoritarians hold sway in many other nations. The rot in US so...

  • Mike

    I feel like this book was both enjoyable and kind of frustrating at times. First, I think many aspects of his diagnosis regarding weak institutions have merit. I largely believe that many of life's bi...