Going to Purgatory With J.R.R. Tolkien

By |2020-09-03T15:27:03-05:00September 6th, 2020|Categories: Art, Christian Humanism, Christianity, Fiction, Imagination, J.R.R. Tolkien, Joseph Pearce, Literature, Senior Contributors|

In his short story, “Leaf by Niggle,” J.R.R. Tolkien provides a much more colourful and comforting purgatorial vision than that afforded by Dante. Niggle, a personification of the Artist, recognizes the landscape as the perfect, living form of which his painting was but a shadow or a foreshadowing. J.R.R. Tolkien expressed a dislike for [...]

The Forgotten “Freddy the Pig”

By |2020-08-07T16:07:51-05:00August 7th, 2020|Categories: Books, Humor, Imagination, Literature|

Even though Walter R. Brooks’ “Freddy the Pig” series doesn’t aim to teach a moral story, deliver great epiphanies, or grapple directly with universal human themes, the books are refreshingly unself-conscious and yet still make a considerable contribution to American literature in the same way the works of P.G. Wodehouse have done for English [...]

America’s “Logres”: The Mythology of a Nation

By |2020-08-10T16:01:28-05:00August 6th, 2020|Categories: American Republic, C.S. Lewis, Culture, Flannery O'Connor, Imagination, Literature, Myth|

C.S. Lewis believed that every nation possesses what he called a “haunting,” a “Logres,” which baptizes it with a unique inner life. What, or where, is America’s Logres? Who is the mythological hero that could guide the American identity the way Arthur guided Britain and inspired generations of English poets and artists? During my [...]

“Advent of the Eskaton”

By |2020-07-25T12:10:18-05:00July 25th, 2020|Categories: Christianity, Evil, Imagination, Poetry|

‘You may say this to Théoden son of Thengel: open war lies before him, with Sauron or against him. None may live now as they have lived, and few shall keep what they call their own. —J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings ‘Ware, ‘ware! in the watches of the night; for the devil reigns in darkness [...]

Ernst Jünger’s “The Forest Passage” and the Conservative Mind

By |2020-07-20T13:42:50-05:00July 21st, 2020|Categories: Books, Conservatism, Freedom, Imagination, Literature, Myth, Nature|

Written in the shadow of the Second World War, Ernst Jünger’s “The Forest Passage” reimagines the forest as a symbol of freedom in an age where the “Leviathan,” or all-encompassing totalitarian state, threatens to encroach on liberty and free space. Yet as long as the “forest rebel” has access to the domains of art, [...]

Joseph Conrad’s Imagination

By |2020-07-16T17:04:49-05:00July 15th, 2020|Categories: Books, George A. Panichas, Great Books, Imagination, Literature, Moral Imagination|

For Joseph Conrad, the struggle between good and evil in the human soul was a permanent reality, a reality one might prefer to avoid, or try to sublimate, but one that nobody who has lived long can absolutely deny. Joseph Conrad: His Moral Vision, by George A. Panichas (165 pages, Mercer University Press, 2005) [...]

“Hungary”

By |2020-06-28T19:53:00-05:00June 26th, 2020|Categories: Character, Christianity, Fiction, History, Imagination, Religion|

History’s tyrants and thieves remain with us, and if things get very dark sometimes, then my best hope is to do the right thing in the light of His Grace. That’s all I can hope to do, passing on that Grace whenever I can. It’s strange how I can’t remember this guy’s whole name [...]

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 [...]

“Waves”

By |2020-06-11T18:19:15-05:00June 13th, 2020|Categories: Imagination, Poetry|

Turquoise waves on shell-white sand Rush forth – crashing, crashing, crashing – Dying gladly as they land, Surging, breaking, foaming, splashing. […]

“Notes from Underground” in Lockdown and Isolation

By |2020-06-10T22:57:21-05:00June 10th, 2020|Categories: Books, Civil Society, Coronavirus, Fiction, Fyodor Dostoevsky, Imagination, Literature|

The fear of the coronavirus allows our governing bodies to keep us in isolation and the consequences of our permitting this act are more pernicious than we can imagine. Fyodor Dostoevsky’s “Notes from Underground” has never appeared less fictional. And why are you so firmly, so triumphantly, convinced that only the normal and the [...]

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