Kirk’s lectures are masterpieces innprinted form, the reader can easilynrecognize they were intended for a livenaudience. Like his previous collectionnof Heritage lectures, Reclaiming a Patrimony,nthis assemblage has a theme:nall is not lost. Departing from the viewnof his old friend Richard M. Weaver,nKirk holds that in the dark tunnel,nsome light glimmers, however dim.nThrough his many seminars at hisnhome in the hamlet of Mecosta, ancoterie of former assistants, and lectureships,nKirk has instilled the value ofnredemption. Even as the weary wallsnbegin to crack, renewal may come.nKirk, like Joad and others, believes thenWest is growing more decadent day bynday, and that we have “lost the object.”nOur appointed civilizing mission,nfatum, has exerted less and less influence,nand like Rome, our populationnand prosperity could disappear andnfrustration would replace national confidence.nIn the first three essays in this collectionnKirk attempts to offer a vision ofnhope—specifically, a refining of thenidea of America’s mission and an examinationnof the prospects for annAmerican Augustan age. He demonstratesnthe need to recover this mission,nbut not as it has been interpreted bynthe neoconservative forces that aboundnin the Department of State and innnumerous think tanks. Kirk accepts thenBoorstinian perspective that the AmericannConstitution cannot be exported,nas it grew out of a special intellectualnand historical experience. The legionsnof neoconservatives have made it appearnas if conservatives endorse unabashednworldwide plebiscitarian democracynaccompanied by a Novakianneconomic order; Kirk counters by repeatingnSir Herbert Butterfield’s warningnagainst national self-righteousnessn— “the cardinal error in diplomacy.”nThe American mission, according tonKirk, is to “reconcile liberty with law.”nA Pax Americana could be producednnot by promoting a pale hegemony,nbut presenting an example of orderednfreedom.nFive of the 11 sections deal withneducational processes; however, theynare too eclectic to be united by annoverall theme. The essays range from anseminal essay on the needed coexistencenof order and freedom in thenuniversity to a rather acerbic attackndetaiHng how computers limit the moralnimagination. This reviewer, knowingnKirk’s environs well, finds the tone ofnthis particular essay overly stringent,nespecially since Kirk has succumbednrecently to the use of electric typewriters.nBut the point he makes is important:nthe Knowledge Society will benreplaced by an Information Societynand the “tested tools of learning” willnbe discarded. The panaceas proposednby educationalists all too often becomentheir own worst nightmares.nRussell Kirk’s many lectures on virtue,nincluding the one offered in thisnvolume entitled, “Can Virtue BenTaught?” have not gone unnoticed bynthe able souls attempting to regain theneducational high ground. Endeavoringnto prove that virtue can be perpetuated,nKirk sides with Aristophanes instead ofnSocrates. The great hero-poet believednvirtue, as the greatness of the soul,ncould not be acquired by pampering orntutorials, but was a natural phenomenon.nThe source of virtue, accordingnto this argument, is the family; thenrecovery of virtue in America dependsnon our revival of this institution.nThe remaining three essays addressnthe problem of the family, the movementntowards an age of sentiments andna concluding essay bearing the book’sntitle. Once again Kirk encounters thenaffliction of decline. Unlike Goethe,nKirk does not believe “the currentntimes are the worst of times” andnrefuses to submit to the twin vices ofnservitude and boredom. Kirk elegantlyndefends the concept of the moral imagination,ninitially espoused by EdmundnBurke in his Reflections. Through thenmoral imagination we realize that wenare simply on the shoulders of thosengenerations—part of a “folk chain” —nthat passed before us; we are, in part, anproduct of intuition. As the essay notes,nideology is the major obstacle to anrevival of the moral imagination. Ideologyncan be countered, relying in nonsmall part on the American disdain forndogma; three-quarters of a century agonSantayana wrote that it would takenmuch hammering to drive an ideologyninto America.nWise Men will serve as a remindernto those of a conservative cast to continuenthe effort to defend the civilnsocial order against its many enemies.nThe lectures presented here were givennover a broad span of time and therennnis a good bit of redundancy. Some ofnKirk’s suggestions concerning educationnwere originally espoused in hisnDecadence and Renewal a decade ago.nHis frequent references to Newman’snconcept of the “habit of mind” willnalso strike some readers as repetitive.nYet, at the end of the day. Wise Men isnanother valiant effort by Kirk to help usnbring ourselves out of our currentndisorder and “refute the prophecies ofndecadence.”nH. Lee Cheek is pursuing his Ph.D.nin political science at the CatholicnUniversity of America.nPrincelings of Peacenby WiUiam R. HawkinsnPeace & Revolution: The MoralnCrisis of American PaciGsm bynGuenter Lewy, Grand Rapids, MI:nWilliam B. Eerdmans Publishing.n”While at one time pacifists werensingle-mindedly devoted to the principlesnof nonviolence and reconciliation,ntoday most pacifist groups defend thenmoral legitimacy of armed struggle andnguerrilla warfare, and they praise andnsupport the communist regimes emergingnfrom such conflicts.” This is thenthesis of Guenter Lewy’s study of thenmost enduring and successful segmentnof the radical left, the so-called “peacenmovement.” Lewy concentrates onnfour organizations: the AmericannFriends Service Committee (AFSC,nfounded 1917), the Fellowship of Reconciliationn(FOR, founded 1914), thenWomen’s International League fornPeace and Freedom (WILPF, foundedn1915), and the War Resisters Leaguen(WRL, founded 1923). By examiningnOld Left groups, Lewy chronicles hownthe New Left gained power during then1960’s and how it has held it ever since.nLewy presents a large cast of characters,nbut if one stands out it is StewartnMeacham, a one-time Presbyteriannminister who joined the AFSC in then1950’s and headed its peace educationndivision during the Vietnam War. ThenAFSC had decided in the early 1930’snnot to join Communist front groups ornallow their officers to lend their namesnDECEMBER 1988131n