Stephen H. Conlin

Written by Stephen H. Conlin

Steve Conlin is an independent scholar whose Master's thesis was on Hans-Georg Gadamer's "Truth and Method" from the University of Southhampton in England.

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“Now the Flood: water is the matrix of all life, but in deluge its creative indeterminacy overwhelms and swamps. Finite beings are flimsy, tossed around as flotsam. (DECEMBER 26, 2004: EARTHQUAKE BENEATH THE SEA, TSUNAMI – PARADISE ONE MOMENT, DROWNING DESOLATION THE NEXT.) Creative power is destructive power beyond our measure; the overdeterminacy brings into being but also annihilates. The…

In his poem My Last Duchess, first published in 1842, Robert Browning creates one of the rarest types of character in literature: the phaulos. Understood in the sense of being the opposite of Aristotle's spoudaios, who is the person perceived as a moral exemplar, the phaulos can be seen as utterly immoral. This type of character presents difficulties, both in…

What the German-American philosopher Eric Voegelin has called "the Drama of Humanity" is manifestly not over: if it was then who would be discussing it anyway? That might seem an obvious enough retort; nevertheless, in his novel The Road Cormac McCarthy takes us almost to the final scene of that drama. In the remorselessly bleak landscape of  what he has…

The aim of this article is to propose the notion that the spoudaios, spoudaic potential, and the spoudaic spectrum are constantly recurring figures in literary texts in both poetry and prose. To demonstrate this, I will present some theoretical ideas and apply them to an analysis of two literary examples: an incident in Hamlet and Ted Hughes’ poem The Thought…

The Incarnation of the Poetic Word: Theological Essays on Poetry and Philosophy. Michael Martin. Kettering OH: Angelico Press, 2017.
 
In these theological and philosophical essays on poetry and philosophy, as Martin describes them in his subtitle, we are presented with what amounts to a pioneering work in the burgeoning field of agapeic (literary) criticism. What is this “new” area, precisely? Martin…

In the novel Nineteen Eighty-Four George Orwell presents us with a world where systemic thinking, a form of solipsism represented by the Party and embodied in O’Brien, has come to permeate and dominate all aspects of human living. This type of thinking, which adheres rigidly to its own logic, becomes a form of closed-mindedness that recognizes no perspective other than…