the imaginative conservative logo

Great Books

0 623

Homer is universally allowed to have had the greatest invention of any writer whatever. The praise of judgment Virgil has justly contested with him, and others may have their pretensions as to particular excellences; but his invention remains yet unrivalled... Editorial Note: This essay was originally...
3 1119

The end of liberal education is not the learning of settled truths, and the inculcation of useful habits for obtaining useful goods, but the perfection of the human as human, not, primarily, as worker, citizen, or even believer...

Soft totalitarianism aims to destroy communities and undermine the character of the people. The next stage in human degradation is mere savagery... Today’s offering in our Timeless Essay series affords our readers the opportunity to join Bruce Frohnen as he explores whether or not present-day America...
0 1086

If we are indeed witnessing the nadir of American politics—or at least its accelerating decline—we should listen closely to Augustine. The “Augustine Option,” meaning a life lived in the final years of Rome, can offer key insights into how we should understand and address these tumultuous times...
1 907

The Great Tradition patiently endures, ready to speak on its own behalf, ready to challenge narrow prejudices, ready to examine those with the courage to be interrogated by it, ready to teach those who are willing to be made unfit for the modern world... The...
0 642

Jane Austen’s heroines live, choose, and marry according to the highest wisdom about love that is ruled by principle, not convention—by the prudent mind, pure heart, and informed conscience rather than by the false prudence of the world preoccupied by money, image, lust, or self-interest...
1 520

Those who truly seek to bring about the good also have to be ambitious for power, just not for their personal satisfaction, but for the greater good; they need to “baptize” their strong personal drive and accept power when it comes so that they can root out...
0 608

Applying imagination to politics can lead to political wish-fulfillment fantasies or to the enlivening of real communities from within... The topic "Politics and the Imagination" is at once larger and more restricted than "Politics and the Arts,"...
2 611

In Samuel Johnson's novel Rasselas, the eponymous character discovers that happiness does not derive from a beautiful place, luxurious palace, or constant entertainment, but depends upon a composed state of mind in possession of truth... Throughout the...
4 889

There's a pace to reading that corresponds to walking, and probably to thought itself; the followers of Aristotle are called the “peripatetics,” a word that means “those who walk to and fro”... At the end of this...

Our world drowns in information, facts, bites, noise, opinions, and other particulars. Yet, even the best of our students have the most difficult time connecting one thing to another. It is myth that allows us to transcend the immediate and the ephemeral...
0 987

Despite the number of times the witches repeat “Fair is foul, and foul is fair,” Macbeth testifies to the objectivity of natural law and universal knowledge of good and evil known to conscience and written on the heart and mind of all persons...
1 975

The hedonism of reading good books makes its mark on the meaning of a life, infusing it with a richness that can be had at no dearer a price than that of a library card—which is to say, it can be had for free by anyone who...
0 996

There is a sickness, traditionally called melancholy, which is particularly at home in communities of learning such as ours. Its visible form can be seen in the engraving by Duerer called Melencolia Prima. Amidst the signs and symbols of...