provingly Lee Edwards’ claim that tliernHeritage Foundation “rests securely onrnthe ideas of Kirk, Hayek and Weaver.” 1rnam not sure which of Kirk’s ideas Edwardsrnhas in mind: I can’t think of manyrnto which the policy analysts at Heritagernconsistently appeal.rnIn any event, Russell Kirk’s achievementrncannot be measured by his influencernon transient policy issues. Kirkrnwill —or should —be remembered forrnchampioning those endming norms ofrnsocial interaction without which civilizedrnexistence is rendered impossible.rnWithout the guidance of these “permanentrnthings” (a favorite phrase of Kirk’s),rnorder in the soul and in the commonwealthrnquickly evaporates. He remindsrnus that, if conscrvahsm is to survive at all,rnconservatives need to think about what itrnis they are trying to conserve. Person’srnbook provides a readable introduction torna man of extraordinary imagination, insight,rngrace, and character.rnW. Wesley McDonald teaches politicalrnscience at Elizahethtown College inrnElizabethtown, Pennsylvania.rnReflections in Printrnby John AttarianrnPerfect Sowing:rnReflections of a Bookmanrnby Henry RegneryrnEdited by Jeffrey NelsonrnWilmington, DE: ISl Books;rn394 pp., $24.95rnHenry Regnery (1912-1996), as JeffreyrnNelson observes in his introducHon,rnwas “one of the unsung heroesrnof the last half-century of American culturalrnlife.” Henry Regnery Companyrn(now Regnery Publishing, Inc.), whichrnhe founded in 1947, gave America’srnnascent conservative movement a beachheadrnin the monolithicallv liberal publishingrnworld: The breakthrough was thernpublication of Russell Kirk’s The ConservativernMind, which Regnerv deemedrn”the high point of my publishing career.”rnHe also published James Burnham,rnRichard Weaver, and other conservativerngiants. As the leading publisher of revisionistrnhistories of World War II, Regnervrneffectively disputed liberalism’s effort tornprune truth into a self-serving “official”rnversion of events. Defending civilizationrnon another front, he published manyrnworks of classical and Catholic thought.rnAs this second posthumous collectionrnof his writings (the first, A Few ReasonablernWords, was published by the IntercollegiaternStudies Institute in 1996) remindsrnus, there was another side tornHenry Regnery: the accomplished essayistrnand reviewer. These pieces—many ofrnthem originally published in ModernrnAge, others making a first appearancernhere —reveal the quality of Regnery’srnprose style (lucid, vigorous, but never strident)rnas well as the depth and breadth ofrnhis mind. Spanning the period fromrn1969 to 1994, their subjects range fromrnmemoirs of his father and his upbringingrnto books and authors (some of whom hernpublished); higher education in Americarnand Germany; major contributors to culturernin Chicago, such as University ofrnChicago president Robert M. Hutchinsrnand architect Louis Sullivan; philosophyrnand religion; and publishing.rnReflecting the book’s title, kernels ofrndiscernment and wisdom lie thick on thernpages. Regnery traces the decline ofrnhigher education to liberals’ presumptionrnin turning universities into society’srnproblem-solvers. Regarding the contemporaryrnmoral climate, he observes that “licentiousnessrnis only a sign of a muchrndeeper disorder, a loss of fiith”; the staternof modern literature he attributes to thernfact that many modern novels “are writtenrnfor people whose mental horizons arernstrongly influenced, if not determined,rnby television.” His account of his innocentrnupbringing, close-knit neighborhood,rnand demanding education inrnHinsdale, Illinois, reveals how muchrnimerica has lost since then—that “changernis not always progress, nor greater conveniencernnecessarily an improvement inrnthe himian condition.” Regnery offersrnconcise but richly informative introductionsrnto the thought of Wyndham Lewis,rnWliittaker Chambers, and Catholic theologianrnRomano Guardini, and to thernlife and work of poet Roy Campbell.rnThis superb collection is no mere miscellany;rnunifying themes and patternsrnemerge. One is Regnery’s celebration ofrnexemplars of heroic, civilized men —rnmen combining vitality and integrity,rnwho stood by their beliefs, grappled robustlyrnwith life, loved it dearly, and livedrnit fully, making the most of their situationsrnand meeting adversity manfidly.rnHe gives us his father William, “a disciplined,rnmature man” before he was 20,rnthen a keen businessman, principled employer,rnand wonderful father; young RussellrnKirk, seizing every chance to writernand publish; Lewis, “who lived in hisrntime with all the intensity of his mindrnand personality” while battling those whornset its trend and tone, standing firm despiternunpopularit)’, blindness, and poverty.rnRegnery lauds Sullivan’s autobiographyrnfor “the sense it conveys of [thernauthor’s] having lived his life to the full,rnof having taken advantage of its opportunities,rnand met its challenges,” andrnsalutes Campbell for his willingness tornrisk his life and reputation for causes inrnwhich he believed.rnRegnery’s abiding, penetrating concernrnwas for publishing and its impact onrnsociety for good or evil. The publisher’srnpower to select manuscripts, Regneryrnkeenly observes, enables him to influencernwhat is read, hence to affect hisrntime’s ideas and literary standards. Simultaneously,rnhe must be a savvy businessman.rnThe serious publisher “walks arnnarrow path: if he ignores the demands ofrnthe market he risks bankruptcy, and if hernsuccumbs to them entirely he sacrificesrnhis own integrity.” In the past, publishersrnhave made superb contributions — suchrnas the Folio Edition of Shakespeare’srnplays—to literature. Today, by contrast,rnwe see “the publisher at his destructivernworst,” bombarding the public withrnsmutty books. For this, Regnery rightlyrnholds the industry ultimately responsiblern—although it is abetted, as he pointsrnout, bv the book-reviewing establishmentrnand affiliated institutions such as thernBook of the Month Club.rnWhile keenly critical of modernity andrnthe liberal errors driving it, Henry Regneryrnrefuses to despair. Having given arnchilling account of liberalism’s power tornshape public opinion, he looks hopefullyrnto a new generation perhaps more awarernof liberalism’s flaws. History’s course,rnRegnery reminds us, “is determined byrnpeople, by men and women of flesh andrnblood. If we don’t like the present state ofrnaffairs, it is within our power to changernit.” To Lewis’s warning in 1947 of thern”threat of extinction” to the Western tradition,rnhe adds:rnThe threat of extinction is nowrnmuch greater than it was then:rnthose bent on destroying civilizationrnare better organized, and therndefenses are weaker. To do what isrn30/CHRONICLESrnrnrn