Month: February 2018

  • Who was Henry Shoemaker?

    Who was Henry Shoemaker?

    In speaking to Penn State students earlier this month on “Inspiriting Mount Nittany,” I mentioned Henry W. Shoemaker, Pennsylvania’s first folklorist. I thought I’d share a bit more about him, because his life was remarkable not only in Pennsylvania history, but for its lessons about the value of human beings sharing stories with one another […]

  • American moral consensus

    David Carlin writes that strong societies used to require a common religion: Once upon a time, everybody believed that if a society was to cohere it had to have a common religion. And thus kings and other rulers had little choice but to persecute heretics; for heretics, like criminals and political rebels, were great disturbers of…

  • Janmot’s soulful eulogy

    Louis Janmot’s “The Poem of the Soul” series is incredible. I discovered it after first encountering “The Wrong Path”: What did Janmot paint this series, and what is he trying to convey in this arresting and ominous scene? In short, he was responding as a Christian to the dechristening of 19th century France: Janmot has…

  • ‘Unfinished justice’ and charity

    Bradley J. Birzer’s on Russell Kirk’s “unfinished justice”: When Russell Amos Augustine Kirk passed away in April 1994, he had begun what would have become, most likely, a rather large book. While it might not have joined the ranks of The Conservative Mind or The Roots of American Order in size, it almost certainly would…

  • What’s a ‘smart’ city?

    Bruce Sterling writes on “smart cities”: Rome and London are two huge, sluggish beasts of cities that have outlived millennia of eager reformers. They share a world where half the people already live in cities and another couple billion are on their way into town. The population is aging quickly, the current infrastructure must crumble…