Allan Bloom and Straussian Alienation

July 20, 2020
The reaction of putative conservatives to the publication of Allan Bloom’s The Closing of the American Mind in 1987 was symptomatic of deep intellectual confusion.
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How Desperate Should We Be?

January 2, 2018
Whatever one might think in theory, in practice acting morally is not something like following a blueprint. Guessing and taking risks are often necessary.
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History as Synthesis

January 1, 2018
Professor Roberts and I may have not so much a fundamental philosophical disagreement as a difference of philosophical nomenclature and emphasis. Ideas in Roberts’s thinking that are still only tentatively stated could well evolve in ways that will reveal further consonance between us.
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Political Morality Reconsidered: A Rejoinder

January 1, 2018
The cries of righteous indignation that I can hear show the force of ingrained habit. How could universality possibly express itself in particularity? This is surely “relativism,” “solipsism,” “historicism,” “nihilism” “situationism”! This reaction points to the need for rethinking not just morality but epistemology.
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Another Conception of Knowing

January 1, 2018
Rather than renew a misconceived theory of knowledge, we need to reconstitute the epistemology of the humanities and social sciences along historical-philosophical lines.
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Defining Historicism

September 8, 2017
The American academy has been abuzz in recent years with a need to identify and get rid of "foundational" thinking. There are, we are told, no suprahistorical essences, no permanent ends, no enduring identities, meanings, or truths.
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A Broader, Subtler View of Power

September 8, 2017
How weak are my putatively weakest points? What about the relevance of “beautiful language,” or female beauty? Are they quite so extraneous to a discussion of political power as Gottfried assumes?
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Not By Politics Alone

September 8, 2017
While the so-called Right worried about so-called practical matters, the Left took control of activities that could help refashion society’s imagination.
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Debacle: The Conservative Movement in Chapter Eleven

September 8, 2017
It should also be stated that, needless to say, the socalled conservative movement has had many admirable features. Some of its members resisted the trends that brought it to its present low point. Unfortunately, as it tries to recover, it may ignore those voices again and repeat its old mistakes.
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Conservatives in Denial

September 8, 2017
Conflating or blending “world-defying” otherworldliness with the proper way to live in this world breaks sharply with the mainstream of Christian thought.
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Power Play

September 8, 2017
A weakness of traditional Western political thought has been a tendency to disparage a desire for power. Following Plato, many…
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Appetite for Destruction

September 8, 2017
During his recent visit to England, President Bush enunciated a “forward strategy of freedom in the Middle East.” He pledged, “We will consistently challenge the enemies of reform and confront the allies of terror.”
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A Jacobin in Chief

September 8, 2017
Ever since 9/11, the president of the United States has been urging the use of American power to spread the allegedly universal principles of “freedom and democracy” throughout the world.
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A Dialogue on Reason and Imagination

September 8, 2017
Philosophical Reason: Historical, Systematic, and Humble Claes G. Ryn [From HUMANITAS, Volume VI, No. 2, 1993 © National Humanities Institute] The intellectual…
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