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Being Human in a Digital Age of Light and Darkness

Being Human in a Digital Age of Light and Darkness

In this digital age of polarized politics, where can we look for guidance on how to turn down the heat? After all, we don’t want to blow ourselves up. Fortunately,...
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Stranger Things Have Happened: The Civil War Among Media Forms

Stranger Things Have Happened: The Civil War Among Media Forms

“There’s Nothing Like a Best Seller to Set Hollywood a-Tingle” —The New York Times Book Review (Sep 16, 1962) “I’d willingly start my next novel—about a small town—right now, but...
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On the Narcosis of Narcissus

On the Narcosis of Narcissus

He could not go. He wanted neither to eat nor to sleep. Only to lie there — eyes insatiably Gazing into the eyes that were no eyes. This is how...
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Learning Wisdom in the Midst of Reversals

Learning Wisdom in the Midst of Reversals

The West shall shake the East awake While ye have the night for morn. — James Joyce, Finnegan’s Wake 企者不立;跨者不行; 自見者不明;自是者不彰; 自伐者無功;自矜者不長。 其在道也,曰:餘食贅行。 物或惡之,故有道者不處。 — Lao Tzu, Tao te Ching,...
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The Social Message of Social Media

The Social Message of Social Media

In the first chapter of Understanding Media (1964), called “The Medium is the Message,” Marshall McLuhan begins the book by explaining his most famous aphorism. Over time, the proposition has acquired...
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35th International Meeting of THE ERIC VOEGELIN SOCIETY, 2019

35th International Meeting of THE ERIC VOEGELIN SOCIETY, 2019

35th International Meeting of THE ERIC VOEGELIN SOCIETY, 2019 American Political Science Association Meeting, August 29-September 1 Washington, DC   David Walsh, Meeting Director [email protected]     Dear Friends, I...
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The Poet as Teacher of Statesmen
This volume joins a growing chorus of scholars who approach Shakespeare as a political thinker.[1] The chapters that follow explore how Shakespeare’s plays dramatize perennial questions about human nature, moral virtue, and statesmanship, and demonstrate that reading them as works of philosophical literature enhances our understanding of political life. Although the last fifty years have…

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The Soul of Statesmanship: Shakespeare on Nature, Virtue, and Political Wisdom. Khalil M. Habib and L. Joseph Hebert, Jr., eds. Lanham, MD: Lexington, 2018.
 
In 2015 students at the University of Pennsylvania’s English department, in the name of “inclusivity,” took down a picture of Shakespeare that had hung on the wall and replaced it with the image of black lesbian feminist…

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“An intermediate nature . . . prevents the universe falling into two separate halves.”
—Plato, Symposium (203b).
 
Almost from the beginning of when human beings began to ponder their situation in the order of things, they have somehow seen themselves as living in a world which is incomplete: a world that is separate, split, in some way ‘torn apart’ from its source…

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Anti-utopian fiction has recently gripped the American imagination. Books such as The Hunger Games and the Divergent series have sold millions of copies and the movies based on these books have also been extremely popular. In January and February of 2017, Amazon briefly ran out of copies of 1984 and the sales of A Brave New World, The Handmaid’s Tale,…

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Human Nature and Politics in Utopian and Anti-Utopian Fiction. Nivedita Bagchi. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2018.
 
In Human Nature and Politics in Utopian and Anti-Utopian Fiction, Nivedita Bagchi examines the philosophical underpinnings of four well-known works of utopian/dystopian fiction: Thomas More’s Utopia, Edward Bellamy’s Looking Backward, Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World, and George Orwell’s 1984. Bagchi’s expressed purpose in this book…

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Storytelling is universal; a constitutive, definitive part of human nature.[1] We imagine our earliest ancestors sitting around the fire telling tales of heroic adventures and otherworldly interventions. Examples of our earliest extant written texts are epic poems likely derived from oral storytelling. We become fascinated by stories that happened long ago or far away as children. Until the development of…

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Flattering the Demos: Fiction and Democratic Education.  Marlene K. Sokolon and Travis D. Smith, eds. Lanham: Lexington Books, 2018.
 
This edited compilation by Marlene Sokolon and Travis Smith makes important contributions to the field of political science teaching. Concerned to understand better how the study of fiction through multiple genres can inform and shape democratic education, the editors begin these investigations…

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John Gray evokes a greater existential threat to contemporary Christianity than any of the avowed Atheists. Not only because the avowed Atheists, such as Richard Dawkins and Sam Harris, have in recent years become caricatures of themselves. Gray’s work, in contrast, attacks Christianity’s most indispensable illusion. Christianity has shown it can survive the metaphysical death of God, the decline of…

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“We are immigrants still, who travel in time,
Bound where the thought of America beckons;
But we hold our course, and the wind is with us.
-Richard Wilbur[1]
 
“After the teacher asked if anyone had
            a sacred place
and the students fidgeted and shrank
 in their chairs, the most serious of all
            said it was his car,
being in it alone.”
-Stephen Dunn[2]
 
Not long after he left the…

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