Conservatism is a political and social philosophy that promotes retaining traditional social institutions in the context of culture and civilization. It is characterized by a respect for authority, hierarchy, and order.
Some conservatives seek to preserve things as they are, emphasizing stability and continuity, while others, called reactionaries, oppose modernism and seek a return to “the way things were.” The first organized right-wing groups emerged in the early 19th century, when reaction to the French Revolution gave rise to the counter-revolutionary Right. The word “conservative” was coined by the British journalist William Cobbett in 1818.
The central tenets of conservatism include tradition, human imperfection, organic society, hierarchy and organic unity, authority and duty, religion, morality, and nationalism.
Conservatism upholds the traditional family and social values such as religion, patriotism, and law enforcement. Moreover, conservatives believe that a limited government is necessary to preserve individual freedom, initiative, and enterprise. They believe in avoiding war at all costs and prefer diplomacy to military action whenever possible.
Conservatives believe that individuals should take responsibility for themselves and their communities rather than relying on government to solve problems for them. They also emphasizes personal liberty and individual freedom within the context of traditional moral values such as duty, loyalty, self-control and discipline under authority.
Conservatives believe that society should be structured hierarchically with an established social order rather than being based on equality among all citizens (egalitarianism).