Abbott’s Right: the conservative tradition from Menzies to Abbott

Abbott’s Right by Damien Freeman is the first publication in the PM Glynn Monograph Series. The series comprises short studies examining sometimes overlooked strands of thought in the major political traditions in Australia, with a view to bringing them back into focus as resources for public policy thinking and the practice of politics.

Abbott’s Right challenges the view that Tony Abbott only offered slogans rather than considered ideas as Prime Minister, and presents him as someone who rejoices in the political battle of ideas. Abbott’s Right also explores how the contemporary conservative voice that Abbott champions was fashioned by Sir Robert Menzies, Malcolm Fraser and John Howard, reflecting on what it means to be conservative in modern Australia. The book argues that the Liberal Party should return to its conservative and centre-right roots and signals how it might address future issues regarding public policy. In the afterword, Tony Abbott responds to Freeman’s analysis and sets in the context of the questions that the rise of Donald Trump poses for conservatives and Labor alike.

Abbott’s Right was published by Melbourne University Press in 2017 and was launched on 13 December 2017 at ACU by Troy Bramston and Nick Cater in conversation with the author. 

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