The Tragic South

By |2020-05-26T15:31:23-05:00May 20th, 2016|Categories: Civil War, Joseph Pearce, South, Tragedy|

The tragedy is that the South’s tragic flaw—its defense of slavery—led to the defeat of its just demand for states’ rights and the consequent rise of the Federal Government, so that the original concept of the nation has been entirely lost. Recently, whilst staying with friends in Dickson, Tennessee, I came across an article [...]

Is “Anna Karenina” the Russian “Republic”?

By |2016-08-28T09:21:52-05:00April 19th, 2016|Categories: Books, Featured, Great Books, Philosophy, Plato, Tragedy, Wyoming Catholic College|

In Plato’s Republic, we find that there is one ‘natural’ or ‘healthy’ state based on justice, one kind of healthy, just soul, but there are many degenerate forms of state and soul (Rep.,445c). Because justice is the state of balance and virtue in which a soul, or a state, lives according to the Good, according [...]

Reading the Signs of the Times Without Surrender

By |2019-09-05T11:55:07-05:00September 10th, 2015|Categories: Art, Christopher Morrissey, Culture, Great Books, Tragedy|

René Girard’s mimetic theory has described how mimesis leads to collective violence. His readings of Greek and Shakespearean tragedy argue that tragedy reveals the origins of violent mimesis in its own mimetic representations. In tragedy, the dramatic representation becomes definitively “tragic” (thereby shaping our subsequent meaning of the word) because what is represented is [...]

Hans Urs von Balthasar & the Dramatic Project of Theology

By |2015-09-01T23:55:47-05:00September 2nd, 2015|Categories: Christopher Morrissey, Hans Urs von Balthasar, Tragedy|

Hans Urs von Balthasar, in Volume IV (The Action) of Theo-Drama, arguably his most innovative theological work, contains a very brief discussion of the work of René Girard. But what von Balthasar says there about Girard, theology, and drama is especially revealing: “Girard’s is surely the most dramatic project to be undertaken today in the [...]

Aspects of Tragedy: Ancient and Modern

By |2019-06-27T12:48:27-05:00July 12th, 2014|Categories: Classics, Featured, George A. Panichas, Great Books, Greek Epic Poetry, Tragedy|Tags: |

In the ancient world the perimeters of tragic vision and experience were clearly established and recognized. One could be quite clear as to the meaning of tragedy and the manifestations of tragic experience and tragic heroism. One could readily comprehend the noble stature and the transcendent realm of tragedy. One could, in short, measure [...]

The Tragic Conservative

By |2019-06-13T11:31:04-05:00December 19th, 2013|Categories: Christianity, Conservatism, Tragedy|

Earlier this year, Yuval Levin spoke eloquently on the centrality of gratitude in conservatism. “Conservatives,” he said, “tend to begin from gratitude for what is good … and then strive to build on it.” Surely he is on to something, and his vision of a warm conservatism is heartening. And yet if we plumb [...]

Breaking Bad: A Contemporary Tragedy

By |2016-07-06T15:13:34-05:00August 13th, 2013|Categories: Television, Tragedy|

The final eight episodes of Breaking Bad have come and gone. If you didn’t follow the series, you missed what many media critics called the best show on television and one of the best of all time. Perhaps so. For many, it has been a five year guilty pleasure. The writing is quite good, and [...]

“Poetry” as Political Concern: Aristotelian Tragedy

By |2019-11-08T16:01:20-06:00May 24th, 2013|Categories: Aristotle, Classics, Daniel McInerny, Philosophy, Tragedy|

Greek tragedy grew up and was cultivated within the context of religious festival, but these play-festivals of Dionysus, as Paul Cartledge has written in The Cambridge Companion to Greek Tragedy, “served further as a device for defining Athenian civic identity…exploring and confirming but also questioning what it was to be a citizen of a [...]

Signifying Nothing: Mass Murder in Connecticut

By |2014-01-15T22:21:51-06:00December 19th, 2012|Categories: Christianity, Tragedy|Tags: |

Last week’s mass murder in Connecticut was so appalling that we find ourselves trying to fit it into a theory, to blunt its emotional impact with rational gauze. That, more than cynical posturing, explains why people are so quick to spin interpretations. And they come thick and fast: This sort of thing is what happens [...]