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Cultural conservatism is described as the preservation of the heritage of one nation, or of a shared culture that is not defined by national boundaries. Other variants of cultural conservatism are concerned with culture attached to a given language such as Arabic or Icelandic.
Cultural conservatism is distinct from social conservatism, although there are some overlaps. Social conservatives believe that the government has a role in encouraging or enforcing what they consider traditional values or behaviors. A social conservative wants to preserve traditional morality and social mores, often through civil law or regulation. Social conservatives generally view any social change as suspect, rather than just those related to culture or cultural tradition.
In the US, cultural conservative may imply a conservative position in the culture wars.
An example of a cultural conservative in the broader sense is Allan Bloom, arguing in The Closing of the American Mind against cultural relativism. Another example is Senator Jim Webb (D-Virginia), author of Born Fighting.
- Cultural conservatism, political liberalism: from criticism to cultural studies by James Seaton, University of Michigan Press, 1996 ISBN 978-0-472-10645-5, ISBN 978-0-472-10645-5
- John J. Langdale III, Superfluous Southerners: Cultural Conservatism and the South, 1920–1990. Columbia, MO: University of Missouri Press, 2012.