Michael Oakeshott on the Tensions Between Political Theory and Practice

By |2020-08-19T13:42:20-05:00August 19th, 2020|Categories: Civilization, History, Liberal Arts, Michael Oakeshott, Political Philosophy, Politics|

Political theory sets out to consider the kind of knowledge involved in political activity and the appropriate form of education that will continue to inculcate this knowledge and the value in sustaining such knowledge to society. Political theory may not be so theoretical, after all. Within political theory, there is a pressure to operate in [...]

Michael Oakeshott vs. Irving Kristol

By |2019-03-11T15:33:24-05:00May 1st, 2018|Categories: Conservatism, Ideology, Michael Oakeshott|Tags: |

Michael Oakeshott’s conception of conservatism was not without its critics. Among them was the American intellectual and self-avowed conservative, Irving Kristol… In 1956, the English philosopher Michael Oakeshott published “On Being Conservative,”[1] a statement of “the conservative disposition” as he conceived it. Although largely well received, Oakeshott’s conception of conservatism was not without its critics. [...]

Counterfeiting Conservatism

By |2013-10-25T11:02:24-05:00October 19th, 2013|Categories: Conservatism, Michael Oakeshott|Tags: , |

Michael Oakeshott Conservatism is the “ism” that came into being to resist the existence of “isms.” This makes for potentially insurmountable challenges: How to evince a political belief that avoids the rigidity of ideology? Can one take a political position without becoming a political program? Can the principled stand against a politics based [...]

Michael Oakeshott and Conservatism

By |2018-11-09T13:02:27-06:00June 30th, 2012|Categories: Conservatism, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Michael Oakeshott, Politics|Tags: |

Rationalism in Politics and Other Essays, by Michael Oakeshott. New York: Basic Books, 1962. 333 pp. [rev ed. Liberty Fund, 1991] It is a pleasure to have Professor Oakeshott on my side, even though there are moments when I have trouble in understanding just where his verbal missile is directed. Curiously, his address in Madrid [...]

The New Classical Education

By |2015-04-29T07:45:15-05:00June 29th, 2012|Categories: Classical Education, Classical Learning, Liberal Learning, Michael Oakeshott|Tags: |

In September 1974, the English philosopher Michael Oakeshott delivered the Abbott Memorial Lecture at Colorado College. Entitled “A Place for Learning,” Oakeshott’s lecture attacked the dominant model of education, a model predicated on the theories of the American educationist John Dewey. Learning, Oakeshott observed, should take place under “conditions of direction and restraint designed to [...]

To Be Conservative is to Prefer the Familiar to the Unknown

By |2017-06-26T16:14:00-05:00February 19th, 2011|Categories: Michael Oakeshott, Quotation|

Michael Oakeshott To be conservative, then is to prefer the familiar to the unknown, to prefer the tried to the untried, fact to mystery, the actual to the possible, the limited to the unbounded, the near to the distant, the sufficient to the superabundant, the convenient to the perfect, present laughter to utopian bliss. [...]

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