Dreher, Rod 1967-

views updated

Dreher, Rod 1967-

PERSONAL:

Born February 14, 1967, in Baton Rouge, LA; son of Ray and Dorothy Dreher; married; wife's name Julie; children: Matthew, Lucas.Education: Louisiana State University, B.A., 1989.

ADDRESSES:

Home—Dallas, TX. Office—Dallas Morning News, 508 Young St., Dallas, TX 75202.E-mail—[email protected]

CAREER:

Advocate,Baton Rouge, LA, former reporter and arts critic; National Review, former senior editor; Dallas Morning News, Dallas, TX, editor and columnist, 2003—.

WRITINGS:

Crunchy Cons: How Birkenstocked Burkeans, Gun-Loving Organic Gardeners, Evangelical Free-Range Farmers, Hip Homeschooling Mamas, Right-Wing Nature Lovers and Their Diverse Tribe of Countercultural Conservatives Plan to Save America (or at Least the Republican Party), Crown Forum (New York, NY), 2006

Contributor to periodicals, such as Dallas Morning News, National Review, Rocky Mountain News, and the Advocate.

SIDELIGHTS:

Editor and columnist Rod Dreher is a religious and political conservative with what he calls "countercultural sensibilities": he is an avid organic farmer, he and his wife homeschool their two children, and he spurns what he feels is rampant capitalism. In an interview with Angelo Matera in Godspy, Dreher shared his definition of "crunchy conservatism": "It's a rediscovery of the kind of traditionalism espoused by Russell Kirk and Richard Weaver and others in the 1940s and 1950s. It's a conservatism that values religion, family, and culture more than individual freedom and the free market. I'd also say it finds the overemphasis on individual freedom and economic liberty in contemporary conservatism inimical to much that we conservatives claim to treasure." The idea of writing a book about his crunchy brand of conservative politics was conceived after a trip to a local market, when a coworker commented that his purchases of organic vegetables were "so lefty… . started to think about all the ways that Julie [his wife] and I lived, as conservatives and Catholics, that put us off the Republican reservation." After writing a National Review article about his political philosophies, he was inundated with correspondence from others who identified themselves as politically conservative but felt disaffected by the Republican party. The result of this outpouring of support and interest was Dreher's first book,Crunchy Cons: How Birkenstocked Burkeans, Gun-Loving Organic Gardeners, Evangelical Free-Range Farmers, Hip Homeschooling Mamas, Right-Wing Nature Lovers and Their Diverse Tribe of Countercultural Conservatives Plan to Save America (or at Least the Republican Party).

Booklist contributor Ray Olson called Crunchy Cons "engrossing" and "excellent current-affairs supplementary reading." George H. Nash, a reviewer for the WallStreet Journal's Opinion Journal,commented: "He is a lively writer with a talent for quotable prose … and his sense of humor and self-deprecation help to temper his stem-winding style." Referring to Dreher's writing style, Danny Heitman remarked in the Advocate:"Those who came to enjoy Dreher's trenchant articles in the Advocate will find that his briskly conversational style has only improved with age."

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:


PERIODICALS


Booklist, February 1, 2006, Ray Olson, review of Crunchy Cons: How Birkenstocked Burkeans, Gun-Loving Organic Gardeners, Evangelical Free-Range Farmers, Hip Homeschooling Mamas, Right-Wing Nature Lovers and Their Diverse Tribe of Countercultural Conservatives Plan to Save America (or at Least the Republican Party), p. 10.

ONLINE


Advocate Online,http://www.2theadvocate.com/ (March 19, 2006), Danny Heitman, "The ‘G’ in GOP Stands for Granola."

Godspy,http://www.godspy.com/ (February 24, 2006), Angelo Matera, "Crunchy Cons Rising: An Interview with Rod Dreher."

Wall Street Journal's Opinion Journal Online,http://www.opinionjournal.com/ (February 21, 2006), George G. Nash, "The New Counterculture: Meet Rod Dreher, A Conservative Who Is Critical of Capitalism."