Thomas Stearns Eliot (26 September 1888 – 4 January 1965) was an essayist, publisher, playwright, literary and social critic and “one of the twentieth century’s major poets.” Born in St. Louis, Missouri in the United States, he moved to the United Kingdom in 1914 and was naturalised as a British subject in 1927.

Grace in the Garden: The Fall of Man & the British Pastoral Tradition

By |2019-06-12T16:09:14-05:00November 17th, 2018|Categories: Books, Featured, John Milton, Literature, Poetry, Russell Kirk, T.S. Eliot|

The transcendent ‘overcoming’ or reconciliation of the Fall of Man—that symbol of the cause of the disorder that we would wish re-ordered, of the return to the garden—is what great poetry graciously asks of us. “An intermediate nature... prevents the universe falling into two separate halves.” —Plato, Symposium (203b). Almost from the beginning of when human [...]

Lewis, Letters, and Love

By |2018-09-05T22:16:55-05:00September 5th, 2018|Categories: Bradley J. Birzer, C.S. Lewis, Christian Humanism, Love, Paul Elmer More, T.S. Eliot|

Real, actual letters are a gift, an insight into our best and our worst selves. Unlike the present world of the ephemeral email and hatchet posts on social media, letters of the pre-internet era could be gorgeous works of art. In them, the writer shares just a bit of his soul, preserving it for time, [...]

T.S. Eliot’s “Dry Salvages” & the Christian Philosophy of A.E. Taylor

By |2019-05-30T11:09:26-05:00July 27th, 2018|Categories: Books, Christianity, Conservatism, Great Books, History, Inklings, Plato, Poetry, T.S. Eliot|

Jesus saved a hurting T.S. Eliot. And Eliot, the greatest poet of the twentieth century, thought Jesus could save us as well. A person can hate the conclusion, but if English is your mother tongue, then you cannot ignore Eliot or his ideas. He shaped the twentieth-century imagination through his poetry and use of language. [...]

The Importance of Cultural Freedom

By |2018-06-26T23:20:46-05:00June 26th, 2018|Categories: Art, Culture, Poetry, Richard Weaver, T.S. Eliot, The Imaginative Conservative|

Culture by its very nature tends to be centripetal, or to aspire toward some unity in its representational modes. The reason for this is that every culture polarizes around some animating idea, figment, or value, toward which everything that it produces bears some discoverable relation… Culture in its formal definition is one of the [...]

On Being Conservative

By |2019-09-19T14:33:33-05:00March 28th, 2018|Categories: Conservatism, Edmund Burke, Family, Jane Austen, Marriage, Philosophy, Robert Nisbet, T.S. Eliot|

To be a conservative is first and foremost to defend or to conserve something good: to protect family, neighborhood, local community, and region… Of the many attempts to define conservatism in recent decades, one of the most compelling is Robert Nisbet’s: “The essence of this body of ideas is the protection of the social order—family, [...]

T.S. Eliot: Culture and Anarchy

By |2018-11-17T08:35:04-06:00February 26th, 2018|Categories: Christianity, Culture, Featured, History, T.S. Eliot, Timeless Essays|

If we take a careful look at T.S. Eliot, we shall see a born conservative, attached to certain austere traditions of previous ages, and yet one who saw clearly that those traditions had worn thin—they had grown conventional and insincere because no one had bothered to establish convincingly why they were important… Today’s offering [...]

Earning the Tradition

By |2019-04-11T11:26:34-05:00February 7th, 2018|Categories: Catholicism, Christianity, Dante, Featured, Glenn Arbery, History, Liberal Learning, T.S. Eliot, Tradition, Virgil, Wyoming Catholic College|

Tradition in action gives rise to new work, and the new work changes the tradition… At a gathering of Wyoming Catholic College faculty and staff on Monday morning, I had occasion to mention T.S. Eliot’s seminal essay “Tradition and the Individual Talent.” Eliot still had an overwhelming ascendancy in literary circles even in the 1960s and [...]

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 [...]

The Conservatism of Robert Nisbet

By |2019-09-03T18:31:58-05:00January 7th, 2018|Categories: Bradley J. Birzer, Christopher Dawson, Conservatism, Culture, Edmund Burke, History, Imagination, Irving Babbitt, Religion, Robert Nisbet, Romano Guardini, Russell Kirk, T.S. Eliot, Tradition|

Robert Nisbet, in direct contrast to Russell Kirk, argued that conservatism was purely a modern ideology. For Nisbet, the entire history of conservatism began as a reaction to the French Revolution… When it came to the history of conservatism, the grand sociologist and man of letters, Robert Nisbet, disagreed with the mighty founder of [...]

John Paul II, T.S. Eliot, and the Culture of Life

By |2019-05-21T14:17:53-05:00January 3rd, 2018|Categories: Catholicism, Christianity, Conservatism, Culture, Culture War, Death, Poetry, St. John Paul II, T.S. Eliot|

Both John Paul II and T.S. Eliot give people something to hope for: Blessed John Paul speaks of a new springtime on the horizon signaling the emergence of a culture of life, and Eliot ends “The Waste Land” on a hopeful, if cryptic, note… We are all familiar with Blessed John Paul II’s description [...]

Beauty Will Save the World

By |2018-05-29T16:19:43-05:00December 10th, 2017|Categories: Art, Beauty, Books, Christianity, Conservatism, Culture, Imagination, Modernity, Religion, Richard Weaver, Russell Kirk, T.S. Eliot, The Imaginative Conservative, Timeless Essays|

If art cannot save our souls, it can do much to redeem the time, to give us a true image of ourselves, both in the horror and the boredom to which we can descend, and in the glory which we may, in rare moments, be privileged to glimpse… Today’s offering in our Timeless Essay [...]

Irving Babbitt’s Higher Will

By |2019-06-24T16:36:46-05:00September 18th, 2017|Categories: Bradley J. Birzer, Christian Humanism, Conservatism, Featured, Irving Babbitt, Paul Elmer More, Religion, T.S. Eliot|

Irving Babbitt believed that man defined himself not by his rights, but by his duties, and particularly how willing he was to restrain his darker impulses and sacrifice himself for another… Famously, when Paul Elmer More and Irving Babbitt were debating one another while on a walk, the former, exasperated, asked: “Good God, man. [...]