sábado, 24 de febrero de 2018

Flannery O’Connor well understood what made Christian Humanism what it was

Essays of the Week

by Bradley J. Birzer
Most readers of The Imaginative Conservative probably know much about Flannery O’Connor. They know she wrote southern gothic fiction—including several brilliant short stories and a few excellent novels. They know she suffered from a debilitating disease and died far too young. They might even know that she and Russell Kirk deeply admired one another. And, almost certainly, they know she was a devout, practicing Catholic. What many might not realize, though, is that she was also profoundly conversant in the Christian Humanism of her day, not only analyzing and commenting on it, but promoting it wherever she could. She also well understood what made Christian Humanism what it was. While it might very well be conservative, it was always imaginative, allowing one to imagine what must be conserved. As with all Christian humanists, she embraced intellect, piety, and, when necessary, suffering... 

by John Horvat
The gun control debate has reignited with the recent Florida shooting. Despite the passionate commentaries on all sides, no one seems to be able to answer the question of when the shootings will stop. As much as liberal media want to blame guns, police or government, this is a moral problem. It involves the acts of an individual who committed monstrous crimes for which he is responsible. As much as others might wish to blame a decadent culture, the nihilistic nature of these dark crimes signal a much deeper problem that strikes at the foundation of modern society. The liberal order that has long dominated American society is falling apart. As it crumbles, it is creating monsters. The appearance of these shooter-monsters is an ominous harbinger of this disintegration... 

by Chuck Chalberg
All reforms are notorious for their unintended consequences; liberal reforms are noteworthy for something that is less noted, but no less consequential. That would be the response of subsequent reform-minded liberals to the consequences, unintended or otherwise, of the initial reform. Two laws of sorts seem to be at work here. The first, of course, is the infamous law of unintended consequences. The second might be labeled the law of generational reform. The idea is this: If a reform produces unintended consequences of a troubling sort, succeeding generations of reformers will make use of those consequences not to undo the original reform, but rather to call for new action that requires an ever-larger federal government... 

by George Stanciu
Americans believe that every person’s interior life is unique; consequently, an individual’s tastes, feelings, desires, and expectations are thought to be a private affair. As a result, I received little or no instruction about my emotions. Even after graduate school, I remained fundamentally ignorant about my emotional life and thus about an important aspect of who I am. That my teachers explained biological life, not emotional life, told me that the rollercoaster of love and hate, joy and sorrow, hope and despair that I rode in my youth was something I would just have to accept as part of my nature. From the absence of instruction about the emotions in the standard public school and college curriculum, I, like others, drew the obvious, but erroneous, conclusion that the emotional life is not open to rational understanding, even though we all recognize that love, anger, joy, fear, desire, and sorrow are universal... 

by Jason Jewell
Author W. Wesley McDonald states at the outset of his work that his purpose is to offer neither a full-fledged biography of Russell Kirk nor a general history of the conservative movement. Instead, he wishes to highlight Kirk’s role in moving postwar conservatism away from libertarian doctrines of laissez-faire economics and individual freedom as an end in itself, toward a more traditional conservatism valuing order, prescription, continuity, and community. He begins this task by chronicling the widespread confusion among both liberal and self-described conservative critics when they were confronted in 1953 with The Conservative Mind. This book demonstrated the existence of a solid tradition of conservative thought in America since the eighteenth century (something that liberals had frequently denied)... 

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