Skip to comments.FROM ANCIENT WHITE MALES-(revitalizing classical studies critical to combatting liberal revisionism)
Posted on 05/19/2005 10:56:07 AM PDT by CHARLITE
Like Rodney Dangerfield, the humanities in Washington "don't get no respect." Not as much as they should, anyway. We're a company town and the company makes politics. But like a blind squirrel who finds an acorn once in a while, politicians and the journalists gather occasionally with others who crave more profundity than the noise in political rhetoric to listen to the annual >Jefferson Lecture.
"The training of the intellect was meant to produce an intrinsic pleasure and satisfaction but it also had practical goals of importance to the individual and the entire community, to make the humanistically trained individuals eloquent and wise, to know what is good and to practice virtue, both in private and public life," he says. This ought to rattle the bones of everyone on Capitol Hill.
"In Defense of History" was not for faint-hearted liberals or politically correct journalists. It was filled with big ideas that sprang from the minds of the dead white males so enthusiastically trashed on the modern campus. Anyone who wants to be up to speed on the importance of the classical Greek historians, tragedians and philosophers can read it at http://www.NEH.gov.The professor, who has been described as "a combination of John Wayne and Winston Churchill," lives up to both, shooting from the hip and hitting his targets with rare eloquence, teaching and provoking. As a cultural conservative, he dares to attack the post-modern mindlessness that can pass for academic thought in the teaching of literature, philosophy and history. This pervades the political culture in Washington as well as the campus lecture hall. He's eager for us to understand that what we call "liberal studies" should be essential reading for every citizen of democracy, with the challenge to aim for the highest public and private aspirations.
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtontimes.com ...
Terry Eagleton surmised that the decline of the Classics in English speaking countries started with the advent of WW1. Philology was largely associated with Germany so the patriotically inclined English took the focus off of them in favor of their own literature.
Very, very TRUE!
This is why I will be buying the complete Great Books of the Western World.
Dead white male bump
I've seen that, thanks. There are actually a bunch of sites about this set, along with at least 3 separate newsgroups running the "Great Conversation" and the concurrent 10-year reading assignments. I can't wait to get my set, so I can start reading. Fortunately, I read faster than most people, so I hope to be able to plow through the series in a couple of years.
Philosopher's Song (Monty Python Live at the Hollywood Bowl)
Immanuel Kant was a real pissant who was very rarely stable,
Heidegger, Heidegger was a boozy beggar who could think you under the table,
David Hume could out-consume Schopenhauer and Hegel,
And Wittgenstein was a beery swine who was just as schloshed as Schlegel.
There's nothing Nietzsche couldn't teach ya 'bout the turning of the wrist,
Socrates himself was permanently pissed...
John Stuart Mill, of his own free will, with half a pint of shandy was
Plato, they say, could stick it away, half a crate of whiskey every day,
Aristotle, Aristotle was a beggar for the bottle,
Hobbes was fond of his dram,
And Rene Descartes was a drunken fart, "I drink therefore I am."
Yes, Socrates himself is particularly missed;
A lovely little thinker but a bugger when he's pissed.
The reason why the dregs of society are being lauded today for such achievements as crucixes in urine, jungle-beat incantations about raping women and killing police officers, unryhmed, nonsensical poetry, and idiotic movies full of sex is precisely because THE GREAT WHITE MALE is now evil. What else have you got? The not great white or non-white anything else.
But give me Bach, Tennyson, Vivaldi, Milton, Caravaggio, Beethoven, Donne, Rembrandt, Herbert, Josquin, DaVinci, Dickens, and the rest of the noble host of the great white men of Western Civilization anyday over the scum we call achievement today.
Much of the analytic side of Philology has been supplanted by Linguistics, a field that purports to exclude the larger human context of lanuguage in order to approach it as a "scinece."
Not having gone to public schools and having the benefit of a rigorous formal education with a strong dose of the "Cannon" of the Western world - and not just the Classics - I marvel at how truly ignorant and ill educated our "academics and "intellectuals" actually are.
When I was a boy, the fellows working at the water treatment plant had a better understanding of their civilization, and were in some way "better educated" than these imposters
And it is not merely about literacy: These folks are deficient in basic and general knowledge of Mathematics, Music or the Visual Arts.
Yes but Milton, like Shakespeare (whom I grossly ommitted from my preliminary list) wrote in iambic pentameter, or blank verse. It was structured and ordered.
I am not a fan of T.S . Eliot, eeeeee cumings or the rest of the decontructionists... form and structure help create beauty, chaos is ugliness..
"Dead white male" bump.
How old are you? When was the last time you were on a campus? Do you have to deal with any of these sort in daily life?
I went to school in the '90s. And I count a few of them amongst my freinds. Remember this is good old fashioned 'English'...not Woman's Studies or Queer theory Studies. Perhaps people involved with those other departments (who have connections to Lit Departments of course) would say differently. I went to a small state school. Perhaps the radicals are at the Ivy League schools? Though people I studied with studied with people like Stanley Fish who I don't regard as a radical.
Forgive the misnomer.
I DO however prefer poetry that is rhymed, with metric feet.
Unrhymed, nonsensical poetry (or whatever I said before) smacks of laziness or lack of skill to me. I was thinking more of the Maya Angelou category actually... I mean, rap rhymes but I would not call it great poetry...
But to each his own.