Reading “War and Peace”: The Tyranny of Historicism and Tolstoy’s Philosophical Reflections

Philosophy of History is a major sub-theme that runs through the work; it begins to appear more readily in the second half of the story and a dedicated second epilogue by Tolstoy is nothing more than reflections on the philosophy of history. War and Peace, therefore, is more than just a story, more than a … Continue reading Reading “War and Peace”: The Tyranny of Historicism and Tolstoy’s Philosophical Reflections

Reading “War and Peace”: Kutuzov and Napoleon

There are many “great men,” or historical figures, who appear throughout Tolstoy’s work. Many have single appearances, like the Austrian general Karl von Mack. Others appear repeatedly; their shadow sort of hanging over the principal characters. Two such great men stand out, and both are dialectically contrasted with each other: The French Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte, … Continue reading Reading “War and Peace”: Kutuzov and Napoleon

Reading “War and Peace”: Natasha and Helene

The two of the most prominent female characters in War and Peace are Natasha and Helene. The two women couldn’t be more starkly contrasted with each other. And in their stark contrasts, the two move toward different destinies like the two unfolding cities in St. Augustine’s masterpiece The City of God. Like Andrei and Pierre, … Continue reading Reading “War and Peace”: Natasha and Helene

Introduction to Plato: Foreshadowing and Prefiguring

Plato is probably the first author to develop the literary notion of foreshadowing. Foreshadowing is contained in the very opening of his most famous work, The Republic. I want to explore, and explain, Plato’s foreshadowing and why it’s such a clever tactic and one that, when recognized by the reader, enriches the reading of Plato … Continue reading Introduction to Plato: Foreshadowing and Prefiguring

The Spectacular Violence of the Greek Gods: Hesiod, Homer, and Greek Theodic Tradition

The decline of cultural Christianity, along with intellectual Christianity, has brought with it a debased Atheism without consciousness, inspiration, or stories. It has also been met by a renewed and vigorous neo-“paganism.” The romantic mind of these new pagans, many associated with the so-called Alt-Right, present the portrait of a redeemed paganism that was—ironically—the product … Continue reading The Spectacular Violence of the Greek Gods: Hesiod, Homer, and Greek Theodic Tradition

Redeeming the Chariot: The War in Heaven in “Paradise Lost”

John Milton’s Paradise Lost is, without argue, one of the triumphs of the Christian imagination. Taking the story of the War in Heaven and giving it detail, especially in Book VI, Milton also makes constant usage of classical and biblical imagery and references to bolster his lively and imaginative retelling. As Raphael tells the story … Continue reading Redeeming the Chariot: The War in Heaven in “Paradise Lost”