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Necessity of the Good

We are all disciples of ­Aristotle. Whether we realize it or not, whenever we are talking about the Good we are working with ideas that are Aristotelian in origin. We speak of good food and good company, good behavior and good outcomes. These modes of the Good share a basic assumption: The good is . . . . Continue Reading »

Conventions, too.

Anger, self-righteousness, impossible promises, blame: political conventions are for setting a tone.  Here is the Democrats’ tone for the coming months going into the election.  It was not to my taste.  On top of the Republican convention, it felt like an enormous political . . . . Continue Reading »

A Complete Life

John Hall Wheelock, a minor twentieth-century poet—dubbed “the last romantic” in the title of his oral autobiography—captured movingly some of the reasons we desire more life, our sense (nevertheless) that a complete human life cannot mean an indefinitely extended one, and the pathos . . . . Continue Reading »

Coriolanus for Christmas

Color me quite nervous, after watching the trailer of the forthcoming film version of Coriolanus linked to here. It seems to be the tired old shtick where you adapt Shakespeare’s Romans or Danes or Scots by dressing them up in modern military uniforms, which tends to convey the idea that the . . . . Continue Reading »

A Minimalist Aristotle?

Innocence and Experience by stuart hampshire harvard university press, 195 pages, $20  Stuart Hampshire begins his new book by pointing out that “there are a thousand or more themes that might be pursued under the heading of moral and political philosophy.” In Innocence and Experience, . . . . Continue Reading »

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