Machiavelli’s “Prince” & Tomasi di Lampedusa’s “The Leopard”

By |2020-05-28T14:04:16-05:00May 26th, 2020|Categories: Books, Government, History, Imagination, Revolution, Western Civilization|

Tomasi di Lampedusa’s “The Leopard” provides invaluable insight into 19th-century Italian history while creating a compelling story, allowing readers to relive an unfamiliar age of revolution and a fading nobility. Time under quarantine has been an excuse to revisit a personal favorite book and to explore its history, controversy, and literary value. I can [...]

Confronting the Heart of Darkness

By |2020-05-25T11:20:22-05:00May 19th, 2020|Categories: Books, Christian Living, Christianity, Dwight Longenecker, Imagination, Joseph Pearce, Literature, Religion, Senior Contributors, War|

Immortal Combat: Confronting the Heart of Darkness, by Dwight Longenecker (160 pages, Sophia Institute Press, 2020) It was, I believe, C.S. Lewis who said, speaking of the mediaeval mind and culture, that “the very air was thick with angels.” If, however, angels are real and not merely figments of the imagination, mediaeval or otherwise, [...]

“For the Journey”

By |2020-05-17T01:05:02-05:00May 17th, 2020|Categories: Catholicism, Imagination, Poetry, Religion|

When my father was in World War II, after which he received orders for other assignments that took him away from home for long periods of time, I resided with my maternal grandmother. She had emigrated from Sicily and lived in this country for over 60 years (but refused to learn English, considering it [...]

Modern Plagues and the Prescience of Ray Bradbury

By |2020-05-14T19:42:56-05:00May 14th, 2020|Categories: Christine Norvell, Fiction, Imagination, Literature, Modernity, Ray Bradbury, Senior Contributors, Technology, Television|

Little did Ray Bradbury know of his prescience in 1951, as he criticized society’s obsession with screens and the far-ranging effects of technology. Could television supersede community? Could it control us to the point of isolation and loneliness? Bradbury’s writing gives us much to think about. I am haunted by a lonely man. At [...]

“Bleak House” and Original Sin

By |2020-05-09T10:30:28-05:00May 9th, 2020|Categories: Books, Charles Dickens, Christianity, Evil, Fiction, Imagination, Literature|

Charles Dickens’ Bleak House is considered by most contemporary critics to be his best novel and, although the postmodernist intellectual community should be navigated with caution, I am inclined to agree. It’s richly complex with an eclectic array of subplots, characters, and themes, and concludes with a bitter-sweet ending that is, unlike many contemporary [...]

“Dog Dreams”

By |2020-05-09T10:38:02-05:00May 9th, 2020|Categories: Imagination, Poetry|

I Sometimes I imagine that I am still young, Like an old sleeping dog in his dreams; His legs move, and he pants at the air with his tongue, As he chases an object which seems To embody the world of his hopes and desires, And all that he ever could be— For that vision [...]

Science Fiction and the University of Chicago

By |2020-05-08T19:05:51-05:00May 8th, 2020|Categories: Books, Bradley J. Birzer, Fiction, Imagination, Literature, Science, Senior Contributors|

During the spring semester of 1957, the University of Chicago invited a number of distinguished speakers to campus to lecture on the meaning and significance of science fiction as a genre. Robert Heinlein, C.M. Kornbluth, Robert Bloch, and Alfred Bester each gave insightful speeches, all of which were collected by Basil Davenport and published [...]

A Child’s Imaginative Conservative: Tomie dePaola, 1934-2020

By |2020-05-01T23:22:57-05:00May 1st, 2020|Categories: Books, David Deavel, Imagination, Senior Contributors|

Tomie dePaola understood that life is difficult and yet redemption is possible. What marks him out ultimately as a conservative of the imaginative variety is that his understanding of childhood includes not only the child-protagonist’s sense of self, but also the sense of self of the other children and indeed the adults in the [...]

“Dark Black” by Sam Weller

By |2020-04-29T17:03:09-05:00April 29th, 2020|Categories: Books, Bradley J. Birzer, Fiction, Imagination, Senior Contributors|

With twenty stories, accompanied by lush but tenebrous full-page images, Sam Weller’s “Dark Black” is a thing of haunting beauty and voluptuous terrors. Dark Black, by Sam Weller (254 pages, Hat & Beard Press, 2020) Most readers of The Imaginative Conservative know Sam Weller as the extraordinary biographer of Ray Bradbury and as the [...]

Robert Penn Warren’s “All the King’s Men”: The Agony of Will

By |2020-04-28T15:10:12-05:00April 27th, 2020|Categories: Books, Imagination, Literature, Morality|

All the King’s Men (1946): It’s as if Robert Penn Warren (1905-1989) wrote this classic American tale principally for college and university students. With a solid foundation in the liberal arts, they will recognize the philosophical and psychological theories that a central character, Jack Burden, has in mind when he transforms them into excuses [...]

Shakespeare’s Sonnets: The Secret to Immortality

By |2020-04-24T19:04:26-05:00April 25th, 2020|Categories: Imagination, Literature, Poetry, William Shakespeare|

William Shakespeare (baptized April 26, 1564, died April 23, 1616) is arguably the greatest writer in any language. Shakespeare’s classical poetry is not only one of the most exalted examples of what an immortal sense of creative identity can accomplish, it is a symbol of the artist’s immortality, and timelessness itself. As today’s coronavirus [...]