How do you shake a modern college graduate out of his comfortable liberal assumptions? How do you suggest to your average 22-year-old, raised in a secular and materialist society, that faith and tradition might not be mere forms of oppression or facile superstitions? Or that freedom might mean more than personal autonomy? You don’t simply hand him a copy of Saint John Henry Newman’s Apologia Pro Vita Sua, and wish him Godspeed. Instead, you lead him gently. You explain to him that the dissatisfaction and dislocation he senses among his peers is real, and that there is a better way to live. Above all, you tell your young listener that he is not alone—that indeed, he is surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses.

This is how Sohrab Ahmari, a prominent conservative commentator and the opinion editor of the New York Post, reaches out to younger generations in The Unbroken Thread: Discovering the Wisdom of Tradition in an Age of Chaos. The book is an extended, carefully worded invitation to share in the treasures of Western civilization. Ahmari explains in the introduction that he is writing partly for his young son, Max. Max is named after Saint Maximilian Kolbe, a Catholic priest who gave his life for a fellow prisoner at Auschwitz and, in so doing, “climbed the very summit of human freedom.” Ahmari worries that Max, despite his illustrious

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