Political Illiteracy: Jim Wallis and “God’s Politics”

By |2019-11-08T16:01:14-06:00January 25th, 2019|Categories: Abortion, Benjamin Lockerd, Liberalism, Politics, Religion, Theology|

Jim Wallis is an intelligent and sincere person, someone worth listening to on serious subjects. But he appears to be politically illiterate. There is simply no engagement with serious conservative political writers—no hint that he knows such people even exist. This is typical of many intelligent and well-informed people on the Left... One of my [...]

The New Face of the Democratic Donkey: Eeyore

By |2018-11-09T12:12:10-06:00November 4th, 2018|Categories: Benjamin Lockerd, Government, Liberalism, Politics, Senior Contributors|

I have noticed that my liberal friends have been very depressed lately. I used to think that my conservative pals and I were the ones who were constantly bemoaning the decline of Western civilization, but we just can’t match the moaning of our left-wing acquaintances in the time of Trump. […]

The Road to Unfreedom

By |2020-07-07T10:14:11-05:00October 10th, 2018|Categories: American Republic, Benjamin Lockerd, Books, Government, Ideology, Political Philosophy, Senior Contributors|

After the shock of the 2016 election, liberals got a civics lesson on the electoral college established by the Constitution, and they didn’t like it. In "The Road to Unfreedom," Timothy Snyder speaks for them in bemoaning the fact that the founders created not a direct democracy but a republic. The Road to Unfreedom: Russia, [...]

Enemies of the Permanent Things

By |2019-05-23T13:01:00-05:00January 14th, 2018|Categories: Benjamin Lockerd, Books, Civil Society, Conservatism, Culture, History, Literature, Permanent Things, Russell Kirk, T.S. Eliot, Tradition|

The necessity of personal morality in a thriving community is denied by the enemies of the permanent things, who do not believe that there are permanent standards of behavior or indeed an unchanging human nature, and who seek to create political systems that will make everyone happy without much effort… Enemies of the Permanent Things: [...]

A People Without History: T.S. Eliot’s Critique of Evolutionary History

By |2019-07-18T15:24:00-05:00August 4th, 2016|Categories: Benjamin Lockerd, G.K. Chesterton, Hilaire Belloc, History, Poetry, Senior Contributors, T.S. Eliot, The Imaginative Conservative|

While T.S. Eliot never made any comments critical of Charles Darwin or his theory of the evolution of species, he was quite critical of various popularized versions of Darwin’s theory that exaggerated its explanatory power and extrapolated from it into metaphysical, moral, historical, and socio-political spheres where, in his view, it had no authority. Two [...]

The Truth of Beauty: Educating the Moral Imagination

By |2017-06-01T15:22:05-05:00July 5th, 2016|Categories: Beauty, Benjamin Lockerd, C.S. Lewis, Russell Kirk, Senior Contributors, T.S. Eliot, Truth|

Beauty is truth, truth beauty,—that is all Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know. —Keats, “Ode on a Grecian Urn” These famous lines of Keats have charmed and delighted readers for two centuries, but skeptics have scoffed at his claim, especially as beauty is well known to be wholly subjective, a value [...]

Educating the Moral Imagination: The Truth of Beauty

By |2021-04-21T15:06:01-05:00November 30th, 2015|Categories: Beauty, Benjamin Lockerd, Essential, Imagination, Literature, Moral Imagination, Poetry, Timeless Essays|

Moral imagination is capable of grasping truth and goodness in ways that move us passionately to live in those objective realities. The answers to the errors of modern times need to be given in philosophy and theology, but it is essential that we also experience the truth imaginatively. Beauty is truth, truth beauty — that [...]

Liberal Education and Politics: The Case of “The Tempest”

By |2019-12-12T13:30:55-06:00November 20th, 2014|Categories: Benjamin Lockerd, Education, Featured, Liberal Learning, Politics, William Shakespeare|

Everything is Political Just as I began my college teaching career thirty years ago, the whole academy seemed to have accepted as axiomatic the assertion that “Everything is Political.” This self-evident universal truth (curiously, my relativistic colleagues have quite a few absolutes) came to be uttered frequently in response to complaints from a few recalcitrant [...]

Poison Pill

By |2014-10-24T16:00:14-05:00October 25th, 2014|Categories: Benjamin Lockerd, Catholicism, Sexuality|

A synod of Catholic bishops recently discussed ways of giving pastoral support to lay people as they struggle to live out the Church’s perennial teachings regarding sexuality. Meanwhile, a new book has appeared on The Birth of the Pill by Jonathan Eig. A review of this book by Henry Allen (in The Wall Street Journal) [...]

T.S. Eliot: The Light Invisible

By |2015-04-25T23:44:32-05:00August 21st, 2012|Categories: Benjamin Lockerd, Books, Featured, Literature, T.S. Eliot|Tags: |

T. S. Eliot
 (Longman Critical Readers Series) 
edited and introduced by Harriet Davidson.

) The current dominance of postmodern literary theory in the Academy may be illustrated by an experience of mine at the relatively conservative institution where I teach. Some years ago, I was examining the course materials of a new colleague who was undergoing [...]

Permanent Things: T. S. Eliot’s Conservatism

By |2019-12-28T13:17:52-06:00June 13th, 2012|Categories: Benjamin Lockerd, Conservatism, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Russell Kirk, T.S. Eliot|

I want to thank Winston Elliott and the The Imaginative Conservative for giving me this opportunity to expatiate on a topic that has been much on my mind for many years, but which I have never addressed directly. Let me also say at the outset that I will be following the lead of Russell Kirk throughout this talk. Dr. [...]

Educating the Moral Imagination: The Truth of Beauty

By |2016-07-17T09:41:31-05:00May 18th, 2012|Categories: Beauty, Benjamin Lockerd, Featured, Liberal Learning, Moral Imagination, Pope Benedict XVI, Russell Kirk, T.S. Eliot|

Beauty is truth, truth beauty, — that is all Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know. (Keats, “Ode on a Grecian Urn”) These famous lines of Keats have charmed and delighted readers for nearly two centuries, but skeptics have scoffed at his claim, especially as beauty is well known to be wholly [...]

Elements in T.S. Eliot

By |2016-02-14T16:01:09-06:00February 11th, 2012|Categories: Benjamin Lockerd, Communio, Liberal Learning, Stratford Caldecott, T.S. Eliot|Tags: |

An important book by Benjamin G. Lockerd Jr, Aethereal Rumours: T.S. Eliot's Physics and Poetics, does for The Waste Land and the Four Quartets something of what Michael Ward does for the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis in Planet Narnia. In his book, Michael Ward shows that each of the seven tales of Narnia was intended [...]

T.S. Eliot and Christopher Dawson on Religion and Culture

By |2016-02-18T18:24:37-06:00November 21st, 2011|Categories: Benjamin Lockerd, Christian Humanism, Christianity, Christopher Dawson, Culture, Featured, T.S. Eliot|

“Eliot’s reputation as a critic of society has been worse than his record”—so wrote Roger Kojecký at the beginning of his 1971 book, T. S. Eliot’s Social Criticism.[1] Thirty-five years later, the situation has not changed, for T. S. Eliot’s cultural criticism continues to be more maligned than studied. A speaker at a recent conference, for [...]

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