Gertrude Himmelfarb was one of the foremost historians of Victorian life. She produced page-turning biographies of some of the age’s most intriguing and influential figures, including Lord Acton, Charles Darwin, John Stuart Mill, and George Eliot. She also produced social histories of the period and brought a Victorian sensibility to American politics as a leading conservative public intellectual.

In this episode, Acton librarian and research associate Dan Hugger speaks with Nicole Penn, author of an essay just published in National Affairs entitled “The Historian’s Craft,” which deftly explores the life and legacy of one of the conservative movement’s most accomplished women.

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The Historian’s Craft | National Affairs

Middlemarch | George Eliot

The Roads to Modernity: The British, French, and American Enlightenments | Gertrude Himmelfarb

The Moral Imagination: From Adam Smith to Lionel Trilling: Gertrude Himmelfarb

Write like a Man: Jewish Masculinity and the New York Intellectuals: Ronnie Grinberg

Lord Acton: A Study in Conscience and Politics | Gertrude Himmelfarb

The Idea of Poverty: England in the Early Industrial Age | Gertrude Himmelfarb

The New History and the Old: Critical Essays and Reappraisals, Rev. Ed. | Gertrude Himmelfarb

Glad to the Brink of Fear | Nicole Penn

A House Full of Females: Plural Marriage and Women’s Rights in Early Mormonism, 1835-1870 | Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

The Forgotten Greatness of PV Narasimha Rao | The Seen and the Unseen

Historian of the Liberal Paradox | Gertrude Himmelfarb

Remembering Gertrude Himmelfarb with Yuval Levin | Acton Line

Learning from Victorian Virtues | Interview with Gertrude Himmelfarb

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Published in: General