Cristaudo’s book is not only the best available introduction to Rosenstock-Huessy (and perhaps Rosenzweig), it is full of Cristaudo’s own insightful analyses of philosophical and cultural phenomena. This, for instance:

“When the spirits of modernity were in their preliminary stages, Shakespeare (in The Tempest) and Milton (in Paradise Lost ) repeated a fundamental founding truth that Luther had brought against Erasmus to articulate: we are always in bondage. The elevation of the self, the ego, the I - which is found in so many modern foundational gestures, from Renaissance aspirations of the will, to liberal understandings of state and governance, to Cartesian metaphysics, to Kantian moral theory - is nipped in every bud by these two masterpieces of psychology and language. Elevation of the self is satanic (Milton); the powerful self is one who serves the right lord/power at the right time in the right way (Prospero’s lesson) because human freedom is always servitude” ( Religion, Redemption and Revolution: The New Speech Thinking Revolution of Franz Rozenzweig and Eugen Rosenstock-Huessy , 35).

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Articles by Peter J. Leithart

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