ON-Lion Letter
"There certainly exist people in the United States who have a self-conscious and positive sense of their identity as Americans," writes John McWhorter in his essay for the 2007 Bradley Symposium.  "They are more likely to be military than civilian, conservative rather than liberal, working-class rather than upper-middle. They are on the defensive, regularly dismissed as maudlin and uninformed."

In the essay, featured in the April 16, 2007, edition of National Review magazine, McWhorter asks, "Could there ever again be in the U.S. a widespread sense of pride in a single culture, as has been typical of Greece, China, Thailand, or most other nations in human history?"

Titled "Americans Without Americanness," McWhorter's essay is one of three commissioned for the Symposium, which this year will address "Who Are We Today?  American Character and Identity in the 21st Century."

The Bradley Symposium is held during the daytime before the celebratory Bradley Prizes ceremony in Washington, D.C., which is on May 3 this year.  The Symposium is organized by the Bradley Center for Philanthropy and Civic Renewal at the Hudson Institute in Washington, D.C., which is substantially supported by The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation in Milwaukee.

It always features a wide-ranging and substantive discussion, before invited guests, of important political and cultural issues facing the country.  This year, the conversation will be structured by three commissioned essays -- McWhorter's and two other ones, by Wilfred McClay and Fr. Richard John Neuhaus.

McWhorter is a senior fellow of the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research in New York City, which is also supported by Bradley.  His most-recent book is Winning the Race:  Beyond the Crisis in Black America

McClay holds the SunTrust Bank Chair of Excellence in the Humanities at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, where he is also a history professor, and Neuhaus is editor of First Things magazine, which is supported by Bradley, as well.
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