Friday, January 24, 2020

Rhetoric and Political Education

Rhetoric is the essence of political life. It is not merely, as a surface reading of Plato's Gorgias implies, a ruse on the part of sophists in contradistinction to the authenticity of philosophers, for Socrates must be the better rhetorician if he is to defeat Gorgias.

Thursday, January 23, 2020

Hegel & The Rejection of History

If forced to consolidate the principle teaching of Hegel's philosophy, it would perhaps be appropriate to sum the thing up thus: those who do not wish to repeat history must reject it.

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

The Straussian Pathos & the Rule of Gentlemen

One tends to forget that Strauss's preference for the rule of liberal gentlemen was not an ideal standard, but rather a practical compromise in light of how unlikely it is to ever expect the rule of philosophers.

Monday, January 13, 2020

Visions of Mary in Flemish Painting

Insofar as I can lay some claim, with perhaps a measure of justification, to being well oriented in the world of literature, I cannot even call myself a rank amateur in the world of art. This is largely due to a deficient education in art history combined with a persistent fascination since childhood with American comic books and Japanese anime. Ergo, I am the Captain Haddock of the art world. 

Friday, January 10, 2020

A History of use and abuse

What is history for? I have noted the alarming tendency in the decades following the end of the Cold War, to use history rather than learn from it. This tendency begs the question of the telos of history as such.

Tuesday, January 7, 2020

Orwellian Reflections

"Oceania has always been at war with Eastasia, has it not?"
George Orwell

Monday, January 6, 2020

Words without Logos

Shape without form, shade without colour,
Paralysed force, gesture without motion
- TS Eliot
The Hollowmen

Saturday, January 4, 2020

The Three Paths of the Emigre

One aspect of Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness which is often overlooked is the subtle allusion offered by the novel's opening to potential for colonial civilizations to rise above and beyond their subordinate status.

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Afterthoughts on Literature is on YouTube at The Humanist Emigree

Afterthoughts on Literature has been dormant for a while because I have opened a YouTube channel where I continue to analyze philosophy and literature, albeit in speech rather than in writing. All but 14 episodes (long episodes) have been translated into English and given subtitles. If you enjoyed my writing, I invite you to subscribe to my YouTube channel, comment and enjoy. Below are links to all episodes with English Subtitles:

Friday, September 7, 2018

Marlowe's Noble Lie

"Would a god be willing to be false, either in word or dead, by presenting an illusion?"

"How, then, could we devise one of those useful falsehoods we were talking about a while ago, one noble falsehood that would, in the best case, persuade even the rulers, but if that's not possible, then the others in the city?"

Plato, The Republic
382, 412b