Carl Schmitt’s “Political Theology”

Carl Schmitt is one of the most controversial and influential political philosophers and political jurists of the 20th century.  His works have influenced everyone from the New Left, including the likes of Derrida and Foucault, and those on the Right, most notably Leo Strauss.  Schmitt, among other things, is generally credited with establishing the sub-discipline of … Continue reading Carl Schmitt’s “Political Theology”

Carl Schmitt and the Concept of Sovereignty

Carl Schmitt begins his essay on political theology by discussing sovereignty.  As he famously opens, “Sovereign is he who decides on the exception.”  What exactly does this all entail? Schmitt’s definition that the sovereign is he who decides on the exception is one of the most famous sentences of all modern political philosophy.  In fact, the last … Continue reading Carl Schmitt and the Concept of Sovereignty

The Erotic Cosmos of John Milton’s “Paradise Lost”

Is John Milton a man for our time or all time? The blind and pugnacious, indeed, radical, English poet arguably wrote the greatest epic in the English language. While claiming to “justify the ways of God to men,” Milton’s remarkable poem is not only a window into the battles of early modern English civilization, it … Continue reading The Erotic Cosmos of John Milton’s “Paradise Lost”

Dante’s Inferno: Understanding Hell

Dante’s three-part epic poem the Divine Comedy, or Commedia, is one of the most influential and dense works of poetic literature in the Western tradition.  Building off Homer and Virgil, and influencing the likes of Chaucer, Milton, Blake, and Tennyson, as well as bringing to popular consciousness and form the modern Italian language, Dante’s epic delves into … Continue reading Dante’s Inferno: Understanding Hell

Science Fiction Fears, Fantasies, and Symbolism

Deep in the wellspring of science fiction is the ongoing struggle between mechanical monsters and holistic heroes. From bleak and dour tales of extermination and human destruction, to optimistic but nevertheless struggling and pathological battles to save life, science fiction has been battling with our modern monsters from the id boiling up inside of us … Continue reading Science Fiction Fears, Fantasies, and Symbolism

Literary Tales Ep. 7: Gulliver’s Travels and the Art of Philosophical Satire

In this episode of Literary Tales we examine Jonathan Swift's incredible mock and satirical travel work, Gulliver's Travels. In this lecture we explore the work as principally a philosophical satire through Gulliver's journeys leading to his insanity and dehumanization. Ruminations on philosophy, theology, and John Milton are included. This lecture is based off my essay, … Continue reading Literary Tales Ep. 7: Gulliver’s Travels and the Art of Philosophical Satire

Literary Tales Ep. 3: Greek Theogony and Theodicy

In this episode of Literary Tales, we examine the dialectical development of Greek theogony and theodicy from Hesiod and Homer down through Pseudo-Apollodorus with concluding remarks on this tradition's supersession by Virgil. In starting from Hesiod's Theogony and exploring the role of the gods, their birth and divine decrees, through Homer and the Bibliotheca, I … Continue reading Literary Tales Ep. 3: Greek Theogony and Theodicy