Eric Voegelin (January 2, 1901 – January 19, 1985) was born in Germany and lived there until he fled to the United States with his wife during the Nazi invasion. He spent much of his career at Louisiana State University, the University of Munich, and the Hoover Institution at Stanford University. He wrote many books including Science, Politics, and Gnosticism (1968), The Science of New Politics (1952) and his great 5 volume work entitled Order and History.

Measuring the Influence of Russell Kirk and Other Conservative Authors

By |2019-05-17T10:22:05-05:00May 12th, 2019|Categories: Christopher Dawson, Conservatism, Culture, Eric Voegelin, Irving Babbitt, Robert Nisbet, Russell Kirk|

By using Google’s Ngram Viewer, we find that Russell Kirk’s reputation hit its highpoint in 1964, and then began a painful decline that remained unabated until his death in 1994. What does Ngram tell us about other conservative authors, like Robert Nisbet, Leo Strauss, Eric Voegelin, and Christopher Dawson? While I would never consider [...]

Understanding Voegelin’s Critique of Locke

By |2018-11-30T21:59:17-05:00November 30th, 2018|Categories: American Republic, Books, Democracy, Eric Voegelin, John Locke, Philosophy, Political Philosophy|

Eric Voegelin No matter how conservative intellectuals try, they just do not seem able to escape John Locke. Jonah Goldberg’s well-received Suicide of the West proudly called America’s Declaration of Independence “echoes of” the great English Enlightenment philosopher John Locke, saying U.S. history was “more Locke than anything Locke imagined.”  He inspired “a government but not [...]

René Girard’s Challenge to Fusionism

By |2019-05-23T12:45:04-05:00May 23rd, 2018|Categories: Civilization, Conservatism, Culture, Eric Voegelin, Politics, Western Civilization|

At a minimum, a restoration of conservative thought requires paying attention to primitive history and to what it might tell us about the things that fusionism has long assumed are most important about tradition—as well as what this new knowledge reveals about the viability of freedom… Modern American conservatism rose in the 1950s under [...]

Intelligent Piety: The Christian Humanism of Flannery O’Connor

By |2018-10-08T13:14:19-05:00February 21st, 2018|Categories: Books, Bradley J. Birzer, Catholicism, Christian Humanism, Christianity, Eric Voegelin, Featured, Flannery O'Connor, Romano Guardini, Russell Kirk|

Not only was Flannery O’Connor one of the most important Christian Humanists of the twentieth century, but she also well understood what made Christian Humanism what it was. While it might very well be conservative, it was always imaginative, allowing one to imagine what must be conserved… The Presence of Grace by Flannery O’Connor (192 [...]

The Elements of Leadership: Might, Measure, & Meaning

By |2018-08-25T01:26:26-05:00January 17th, 2018|Categories: Eric Voegelin, Featured, Leadership, Political Philosophy|Tags: |

Not only is a leader an agent of force and something of a philosopher, but he must also be a kind of corporate prophet… The philosopher Eric Voegelin labored for many years in relative obscurity until his death in 1985. Even now his disciples are drawn largely from conservative academe, which is so marginal [...]

A Thinker You Should Know: Eric Voegelin

By |2017-12-27T10:34:20-05:00December 27th, 2017|Categories: Conservatism, Eric Voegelin, History, Philosophy, Western Tradition|

Eric Voegelin’s philosophical framework attempted to break down the ideological barriers to the search for order and the recovery of transcendent consciousness… Eric Voegelin’s work is not well known outside a relatively small group of academics and their students. Yet within this domain Voegelin’s influence is impressive. His work has inspired a growing secondary literature [...]

The American Experience

By |2019-01-04T11:39:52-05:00December 13th, 2017|Categories: American Republic, Conservatism, Culture, Eric Voegelin, Europe, Philosophy, The Imaginative Conservative|

America was a world in which this other world that I had grown up in was intellectually, morally, and spiritually irrelevant. That there should be such a plurality of worlds had a devastating effect on me. The experience broke for good my provincialism of a Central European or generally European kind without letting me [...]

On Debate and Existence

By |2019-04-04T11:22:41-05:00May 18th, 2017|Categories: Eric Voegelin, Ideology, Philosophy, Plato, Politics, St. Augustine, St. Thomas Aquinas|Tags: |

The speculations of classic and scholastic metaphysics are edifices of reason erected on the experiential basis of existence in truth. We cannot withdraw into these edifices and let the world go by, for in that case we would be remiss in our duty of “debate”… In our capacity as political scientists, historians, or philosophers [...]

Friedrich Nietzsche’s “Last Man”

By |2017-05-10T13:42:28-05:00May 10th, 2017|Categories: Eric Voegelin, Quotation|

Editor's Note: In his essay “Nietzsche, the Crisis, and the War,” Eric Voegelin summarizes Friedrich Nietzsche’s disturbing description of "The Last Man”: Zarathustra preaches the gospel of the superman to the people, and the people are silent. He then tries to arouse them by an appeal to their pride and draws the picture of the most contemptible, [...]

Ten Books That Shaped America’s Conservative Renaissance

By |2018-11-27T14:21:30-05:00March 12th, 2017|Categories: Conservatism, Economics, Edmund Burke, Eric Voegelin, Featured, Friedrich Hayek, George Nash, Ludwig von Mises, M. E. Bradford, Robert Nisbet, Russell Kirk, T.S. Eliot, The Conservative Mind, The Imaginative Conservative, Timeless Essays, Wilhelm Roepke, William F. Buckley Jr.|

Today’s offering in our Timeless Essay series affords readers the opportunity to join Jeffrey O. Nelson as he explores the books and thinkers who shaped America’s Conservative Renaissance. —W. Winston Elliott III, Publisher If a conservative order is indeed to return, we ought to know the tradition which is attached to it, so that we [...]

How Should Conservatives Respond to President Trump’s Nationalism?

By |2017-02-01T10:11:19-05:00January 30th, 2017|Categories: Donald Trump, Eric Voegelin, Leo Strauss|

Whether or not President Trump is successful with a principled nationalistic agenda or with a more pragmatic one, more traditionally-oriented conservative intellectuals must do some serious thinking, either acceding to nationalism or pragmatism or finding a new story… Donald Trump is nothing if he is not forthright. In his Inaugural Address, the President could [...]

On Classical Studies

By |2016-12-21T09:29:48-05:00October 16th, 2016|Categories: Classical Education, Classics, Eric Voegelin, Featured, Liberal Learning, The Imaginative Conservative, Timeless Essays|

Today’s offering in our Timeless Essay series affords readers the opportunity to join Eric Voegelin as he explores the importance of studying the classics. —W. Winston Elliott III, Publisher A reflection on classical studies, their purpose and prospects, will properly start from Wolf’s definition of classic philology as the study of man’s nature as it has [...]

The Restoration of Tradition

By |2016-09-05T20:04:08-05:00September 5th, 2016|Categories: Civilization, Eric Voegelin, Philosophy, Tradition|

The position this paper will attempt to illustrate, if not demonstrate, is that once lost or weakened the tradition of a society can be restored only by a creative and even radical reconstruction of the tradition itself. The problem to which we address our­selves is as complex as it is profound. And clear thought about [...]