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Italy’s Donald Trump
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Italy’s Donald Trump

Politicians and businessmen do not always see eye to eye.  In ancient Rome the political elite, the Senatorial Order, squabbled with the wealthy Knights of the Equestrian Order.  Cicero advocated a “Concord of the Orders,” where senators and knights would

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Bill O’Reilly: the Big Dog Who did not Bark

Sherlock Holmes famously noticed the importance of a dog not barking. In the aftermath of the FOX Republican Debate there has been no discussion of the absence of FOX News (FNC) star Bill O’Reilly. Before the debate O’Reilly commented that

Why Christians Need the Classical Tradition
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Why Christians Need the Classical Tradition

One of the most intriguing paradoxes of Dante’s Divine Comedy is the pervasive presence of pagan classical antiquity in what was meant to be (and is) Europe’s greatest Christian poem.  Dante juxtaposes and interweaves classical and Christian, from Virgil’s appearance

Last of the Romans
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Last of the Romans

Andrew Crocker did not attend his commencement exercises at Michigan State University in East Lansing on May 2.  He was home dealing with family matters.  So he missed the awarding of two honorary doctorates.  Shirley Weis, a graduate of MSU’s

Vocation and the Humane Economy
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Vocation and the Humane Economy

I once sat on the honors orals of an economics major who had applied a standard mathematical model to immigration.  The mathematics and data collection were well done, but the thesis was premised on the assumption we can understand immigration

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Last of the Romans

Andrew Crocker did not attend his graduation exercises at Michigan State University in East Lansing on May 2. He was home dealing with family matters. So he missed the honorary doctorates. Shirley Weis, a graduate of MSU’s College of Nursing,

A Guiding Presence
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A Guiding Presence

Bruno Gentili passed away in Rome on January 8.  He was Italy’s most distinguished scholar of ancient Greek language and literature.  His contributions ranged from composing a popular textbook of Greek lyric poetry and the basic introduction to Greek meter

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Sequester Semester 2013

 

In the summer of 2011 the US Congress voted to raise the national debt ceiling on the condition that a “super committee” of six democrats and six republicans would meet and hammer out a way to reduce the national deficit.

Plato and the Spirit of Modernity
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Plato and the Spirit of Modernity

In C.S. Lewis’s The Last Battle the world of Narnia begins to dissolve and disappear.  The Pevensie children are confused and frightened, but Professor Kirke, now Lord Digory, reassures them that the Narnia and the England they had known were

Long Day’s Journey Into Ignorance
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Long Day’s Journey Into Ignorance

“There is no use in excellent laws, even ones approved by all active citizens,
if the citizens have not been habituated to and educated in the city’s way of life.”

—Aristotle, Politics 5.9

In Céline’s nightmarish masterpiece, Journey to the

When Immigration Becomes Migration
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When Immigration Becomes Migration

“San Pietro si fece la barba prima per sé e poi per gli altri.”
(“Saint Peter shaved himself first and then other people.”)

—A proverb from Lazio, near Rome

Americans believe that they are unusual.  They use the word “unique”

Pat Buchanan, Conservative Revolutionary
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Pat Buchanan, Conservative Revolutionary

“An Liberalismus gehen die Völker zugrunde.”

—Moeller von den Bruck

Pat Buchanan’s exciting new book demonstrates clearly and convincingly that the population base of Western civilization is disappearing as Europeans and Americans are no longer reproducing themselves even at replacement

Retelling History
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Retelling History

A few years ago, David Denby wrote about his experiences as a student in Humanities I-II, the “Great Books course,” at Columbia College.  In Smiling Through the Cultural Catastrophe, Dartmouth professor Jeffrey Hart “teaches,” for the general reader, his

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The Final Solution of the Philological Problem

        “With him the love of country means Blowing it all to smithereens And having it all made over new.”

—Robert Frost

Paul de Man’s life was “the classic immigrant story” (according to James Atlas). He arrived in New York in

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Front Page News

The National Front’s mayoral victory in the southern French village of Vitrolles, on February 9, was front-page news in Europe and is important for Americans. The NF candidate had been its brilliant deputy chief, Bruno Mégret, who barely lost the

Confirmation and Indoctrination
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Confirmation and Indoctrination

Institutions survive because the old teach the young. The Quakers who founded Haverford and Swarthmore colleges in Pennsylvania had to admit that the Holy Spirit could use the help of explicit teaching to back up His direct conversation with the

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The Bankruptcy Crisis

Personal bankruptcies are being filed at a rate 25 percent higher than in 1995, and if the current rate is maintained, the absolute numbers, estimated at 1.1 million, will surpass the record of 900,000 set in 1992. The situation surprised

Scholarship and Bricolage
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Scholarship and Bricolage

Suppose it is true that we are living in a post-Christian age. On what basis shall we live our lives, make moral decisions, create and destroy? I suppose that, if Christianity were to disappear as the guiding moral force in

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Losing Their Significance

Sir James Goldsmith in Le Piège (Paris, 1993) eloquently defended the nation and regional free trade against internationalists advocating global free trade. He provoked a formal answer from the European Commission in October 1994. A month later the English version

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Arguments Against Global Free Trade

Sir James Goldsmith’s The Trap (New York, 1994) is the clearest introduction to the arguments against global free trade and its consequences for the nation. The English translation adds helpful notes and bibliography to the French original, Le Piège (Paris,

A Free-Minded
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A Free-Minded

Douglas Young was a tall man, six feet six inches; with his beard he looked like a Calvinist Jehovah. At St. Andrews, he acquired the nickname “God” by eavesdropping on a political discussion about the Balkans. (In the 1930’s, the

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Lessons From France

On the French nightly news for Monday, June 12, the anchor’s face was so grim that, at first, I thought the French forces in Bosnia had suffered serious losses. But, no, he was reporting on the French municipal elections, the

The Future Belongs To Us
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The Future Belongs To Us

“Reaction is the consequence of a nation waking from its illusions.”
—Benjamin Disraeli

In the 1960’s, when those of us who are now “of a certain age,” as the old-fashioned French expression goes, were young, we used to talk about

Role Models and Poetry
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Role Models and Poetry

Societies, as much as individuals, need role models. For good and for ill, our cultural tradition has been influenced by the figures of Achilles and Odysseus, placed at the center of our moral imagination by Homer almost three millennia ago.

Our Classical Roots
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Our Classical Roots

On January 6, 1816, Thomas Jefferson wrote a letter to his state legislator, Colonel Charles Yancey. As we might expect, Jefferson’s letter contains reflections of general interest on many topics, ranging in this case from the dangers of a large

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Real Men’s Studies

The negative critique of American education has grown from a mere trickle back when Albert Jay Nock delivered his lectures on Theory of Education in the United States at the University of Virginia in 1931 into a roaring flash flood.

Commentary on the Gallic Culture War
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Commentary on the Gallic Culture War

When the right took over control of the French Assembly this spring, with an enormous majority, they left economic matters in the hands of Prime Minister Eduard Balladur and proceeded to rewrite the French code of nationality and to restrict

Mimesis and Perjury
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Mimesis and Perjury

A tidal wave of intellectual, and sometimes financial, fraud is hanging above the happy tropical village of American academia, threatening to crash down on it and sweep it away into the off-shore reefs. The danger has a distinctly different appearance

Margaret Fuller in Rome
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Margaret Fuller in Rome

“Oh Rome! my country! city of the soul!
The orphans of the heart must turn to thee!”

—Lord Byron, Child Harold’s Pilgrimage

What is the greatest lost work of ancient literature? Was it Arctinus’ epic Aethiopis, which told of

Ignorance and Freedom
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Ignorance and Freedom

“In a state of civilization,” opined Thomas Jefferson, it is not possible to be both ignorant and free. In Query XIV of his Notes on the State of Virginia Jefferson laid out his plan for public education. Every free man

The American Crisis Without Alternative
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The American Crisis Without Alternative

The most important event of the waning years of the 20th century is the collapse of the last of the great national socialist powers whose rise and fall dominated the generations after World War I. The Axis easily defeated their

Truth in Empire
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Truth in Empire

He arrived at the highest seat of power late in life, after a career that most considered inappropriate for a world leader. He consolidated his popularity by the successful invasion of a small island. Although his influence on the structure

Philosophy in an Old Key
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Philosophy in an Old Key

In the ancient world no one could talk or read too much about philosophy. Wealthy Athenian nobles, Plato and Xenophon, for instance—even Roman emperors, like Marcus Aurelius—lived for the hours they could devote to philosophical discourse. The pagan’s conversion to

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The Veterans of Future Wars

It was 1936 and the Depression still held America in its grip. Few doubted that a new European war was coming, and Japan and China had been fighting in the East for years. Most Americans were opposed to participating in

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Deplored in Public Print

Guns and rape are often deplored in the public prints as two of our nation’s worst plagues. One may be the cure for the other. Denver, for instance, is at the mercy of a serial rapist. It is increasingly clear

Ancient Texts and Modern Readers
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Ancient Texts and Modern Readers

“Begin at the beginning,” was the King’s suggestion to Alice. “Go on to the end. Then stop.” Kurt and Barbara Aland of the Institute for New Testament Textual Research in Münster, Westphalia, Germany, begin their book on the New Testament

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Roman Reflections of America

William L. Vance, of Boston University, had the brilliant idea of describing the relationship of citizens of a new nation to the civilization of a very old city. In the first volume, Vance concentrates on Americans’ reactions in literature and

Dance to the Music of Time
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Dance to the Music of Time

The struggle to keep poetry alive is a game of tag-team wrestling, and the greatest poets play their matches with the poets of ancient Greece and Rome. We all know it for Latin. Plautus and Vergil are centones of Greek

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Passion and Pedantry

“Lord, what would they say Did their Catullus walk this way?”
—W.B. Yeats

William Butler Yeats’s picture of the scholar is not a pretty one (“All cough in ink. All wear the carpet with their shoes.”) and literature does not

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Raising a Ruckus

I remember sitting in an airport bar with a few bemused travelers listening to the ads on TV. “America’s ignored crisis,” Tom Brokaw blared at us. “Children in poverty. Most people below the poverty line are children.” First one of

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The Ethos of Freedom

“That’s just rhetoric!” So we dismiss statements we have little respect for. Readers of Tacitus’ Dialogue on Orators will remember that the Roman historians thought that eloquence is a sign of a free state. There was a time when the

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A Free-For-All

A lot of Americans are worried about the way universities are teaching our children. During the second weekend of November 1988, equally concerned members of the National Association of Scholars gathered at the old Roosevelt Hotel in New York City.

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Pax Through Strength

In the general collapse of humane studies that marks the declining decades of the 20th century, a few areas continue to produce important scholarship. One of those fields is Roman history, especially the history of the Roman Republic. Emilio Gabba