The Durable Mr. Albert Jay Nock

By |2020-10-13T11:40:30-05:00April 18th, 2018|Categories: Civil Society, Conservatism, Economics, History, Tradition|Tags: , |

Some sound instinct kept Albert Jay Nock from ever becoming a reformer, in the usual sense. He was never a tub-thumper for some system; never an organization man. He was, to the contrary, a lifelong learner. Albert Jay Nock died too soon, but not before he had nailed to the mast several of the paradoxes [...]

A Stroll With Albert Jay Nock

By |2020-10-12T08:06:18-05:00February 22nd, 2018|Categories: Civil Society, Community, Conservatism, Culture, Education, History, Politics|Tags: , |

The trouble with our civilization, Albert Jay Nock declared, is that it makes exceedingly limited demands on the human spirit and the qualities that are distinctly and properly humane. We have been trying to live by mechanics alone, the mechanics of pedagogy, politics, industry, commerce. Instead of experiencing a change of heart, we bend our [...]

The Counsel of Despair? Albert Jay Nock on Self-Government

By |2020-08-18T16:42:09-05:00September 22nd, 2016|Categories: Economics, Featured, Free Markets, Libertarianism|Tags: |

Albert Jay Nock believed that the Jeffersonian project depended on the improvability of citizens through education, but that the ordinary mass of humans simply could not be so improved. In Zen Buddhism, the lineage of student to master is extremely important—it is the channel through which the Dharma is transmitted. There is a story of [...]

On Albert Jay Nock and the Russian Roots of a Gentleman Anarchist

By |2015-04-28T01:30:51-05:00July 17th, 2014|Categories: Conservatism, Glenn Davis, Russia|Tags: , |

Episcopal priest, professional baseball player, college instructor, lecturer, and prolific writer, Albert Jay Nock (1872-1945) had a varied life and a profound effect on the nascent American conservative movement in the decades preceding World War II. Largely known by libertarians as the first editor of The Freeman and the author of Our Enemy, the State [...]

Your Friend, the State

By |2013-11-16T22:55:40-06:00July 24th, 2012|Categories: Books, Joe Sobran, Politics|Tags: |

Albert Jay Nock, an excellent but largely forgotten writer, once wrote a little book titled Our Enemy, the State. I still reread it when I’m groggy from absorption in the daily events of politics. It revives me like a slap in the face. If I were a pagan, I might fancy I heard the Olympian laughter [...]

Albert Jay Nock: The Impossibility of a Return to the Liberal Arts?

By |2018-10-06T16:35:14-05:00August 2nd, 2011|Categories: Bradley J. Birzer, Liberal Learning, Traditional Conservatives and Libertarians|Tags: , |

One of the greatest intellectual pleasures of my summer has been the discovery of the writings of Albert Jay Nock. 

Well, really, the re-discovery. 

I had twice read Nock’s Our Enemy, the State, but I’d never found it compelling. In fact, if anything, at the times I read it, I found it rather repulsive. It [...]

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