Walker Percy’s “The Second Coming”

By |2020-06-19T11:29:29-05:00June 24th, 2020|Categories: Books, Culture, Fiction, Literature, Walker Percy|

During the last third of the twentieth century, Walker Percy was a force to be reckoned with, as essayist, philosopher, vocal Catholic, and, especially, as a prize-winning novelist, often best-selling. (He was considered a first-class stylist.) Describable, I think, as “psychological gothic” (and Southern, though he came to hold no truck with Faulkner), those [...]

“Maria Theresia” Symphony

By |2020-06-24T22:53:02-05:00June 24th, 2020|Categories: Audio/Video, Joseph Haydn, Music|

The Symphony No. 48 in C major, Hoboken I/48, is a symphony by Joseph Haydn written in 1768 or 1769. The work has the nickname "Maria Theresia" as it was long thought to have been composed for a visit by the Holy Roman Empress, Maria Theresa of Austria in 1773. An earlier copy dated 1769 [...]

Edgar Allan Poe’s Metaphysics: Rediscovering “Eureka”

By |2020-06-24T09:57:31-05:00June 23rd, 2020|Categories: Art, Beauty, Books, Edgar Allan Poe, Imagination, Literature, Reason|

Many details of Edgar Allan Poe’s scientific treatment of the universe in “Eureka” has flaws which we may today see as errors. However, the value of this masterpiece lies primarily in the concise method of fruitful thinking showcased throughout and the broad universal principles of order, beauty, goodness, and creativity which Poe makes intelligible [...]

“Stand Watie”

By |2020-06-23T17:32:54-05:00June 23rd, 2020|Categories: Audio/Video, Civil War, Music|

Stand Watie (Cherokee: ᏕᎦᏔᎦ, romanized: Degataga, lit. 'Stand firm') (December 12, 1806 – September 9, 1871), also known as Standhope Uwatie, Tawkertawker, and Isaac S. Watie, was a leader of the Cherokee Nation. They allied with the Confederacy, and he was the only Native American to attain a general's rank in the Civil War, Confederacy [...]

Why Is Beethoven So Popular?

By |2020-08-01T23:58:54-05:00June 22nd, 2020|Categories: Beethoven 250, Ludwig van Beethoven, Michael De Sapio, Music|

It is Beethoven—not Bach or Mozart—who is the most universally popular composer in the classical canon. Why is this? Some authors have posited his democratic social beliefs or his personal story of victory over deafness. These are all certainly factors, but I prefer to look first at the aesthetic qualities of the music itself. Johann [...]

In Praise of Libraries

By |2020-06-22T11:43:00-05:00June 22nd, 2020|Categories: Books, Bradley J. Birzer, Culture, Libraries, Senior Contributors|

May God bless the librarians of the world. Unrecognized as such, they are the keepers and preserves of culture, and of our sanctuary islands in the maelstrom of turbulent modernity. My earliest memory of entering a library was sometime during my first few days at Wiley Elementary School in Hutchinson, Kansas. It was the [...]

Music in a Time of Terror

By |2020-06-19T14:07:23-05:00June 21st, 2020|Categories: Culture, Joseph Pearce, Music, Politics, Senior Contributors|

At eminent universities, Europhobic cultural Marxism is taught to succeeding generations of music majors, prejudicing each generation against the canon of great music that Europe has produced, not because it is bad or lacking in beauty but simply because it is deemed politically incorrect for no other reason but that anything European must be [...]

The Catholic School in the Pluralist Polis

By |2020-06-20T16:52:04-05:00June 20th, 2020|Categories: Catholicism, Culture, Education, Modernity, Religion, Truth, Worldview|

A traditional liberal arts curriculum elevates the tastes, ennobles the sentiments, and orders the mind to truth: Socratic questioning forces critical reflection on the content and coherency of one’s ideas; a vigorous and integrated life of grace and prayer keeps the mind and heart strong, pure, integrated, and focused on Jesus Christ. Yet to [...]

Poetry as a Form of Life

By |2020-06-19T14:19:42-05:00June 19th, 2020|Categories: Art, Beauty, Culture, Literature, Modernity, Poetry, Virtue, Writing|

The poet’s power is a power to disclose, extol, and communicate the sanctity of experience, protecting it from the ordinary disorientation of the quotidian. The poet calls attention to the ordinary patterns of human life, and is a call to contentment, that rarest of achievements. To attribute to poetry such power is to ascribe [...]

Myth: The Door to the Transcendent

By |2020-06-19T14:09:02-05:00June 19th, 2020|Categories: Art, Culture, Fiction, Modernity, Myth|

Throughout history, cultures have always developed fantastical tales of heroes and gods and monsters and demons. Whether they are tales of the Greek Pantheon, Norse gods, or modern-day superheroes, these tales grasp the imagination and transport the hearer to a different realm full of possibility. The question then arises in my mind: Are these [...]

“Farewell, Proud City”: Dido’s Lament For Carthage

By |2020-06-19T11:29:32-05:00June 19th, 2020|Categories: Audio/Video, Hector Berlioz, Music|

When Berlioz's "Trojans" reaches its last half-an-hour, with Dido’s rage, misery, and then calm acceptance of utter loss amid the final doomed realization of Rome’s triumph—one finds oneself on a level that shuns most other opera’s attempts at classical transcendence. Based on Virgil’s epic poem the Aeneid, Hector Berlioz composed his four-hour Les Troyens in the style [...]

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