Co-sponsored by Liberty Fund, Inc., this is an intellectually demanding and stimulating weekend colloquium that explores the foundations of liberty in a series of graduate-level, text-based, guided Socratic discussions.

  • This colloquium is for Acton alumni who are currently enrolled in or have recently completed graduate level work. 
  • This colloquium will consist of 6 guided Socratic discussion sessions.
  • Readings will be provided to all accepted participants. The discussion sessions are text-based and so selected participants are required to prepare appropriately and participate fully in all sessions.

Religion, Liberty, and American Culture

This colloquium explores the place of religion and religious belief in the history of America and considers its significance for liberty, American politics, culture, and the economy. The readings will proceed chronologically from the pre-Founding period to the early twenty-first century.

The colloquium will look at how religion has shaped a changing American culture and, vice-versa, how aspects of the American experiment have affected the character and influence of religious belief in America. It will involve asking questions such as: What was the nature of religious freedom at America’s conception? How did it influence other aspects of American thinking? How did such ideas change over time? What is the significance of religion for America’s political and economic development?