This is so astonishingly unfounded and rude that it cannot be ignored.
Although there is a great deal more to "Western Civilization" than
military violence, that violence is genuinely part of it. It is simply
part of history.
Moreover, there is no contradiction whatever between critiqueing the
violence and accepting the technology and the enlightenment inheritance
of "free speech" as an ideal.
Nor is there any remote connection between that critique and a desire to
have enslaved women.
Nor is it at all certain that the United States would be in existence to
allow all this embarassing chauvinism had not France supported us and
helped us in the Revolutionary War. Nor would all that Enlightenment
philosophy about individual rights and freedoms have been so powerful
had not the French thought up a good deal of it--despite the bloody
outcome in their own revolution.
It is difficult to determine which of these responses is more misguided
or less aware of history.
Why cannot we discuss Eliot on this since "Tradition and the Individual
Talent" is a key text in this notion of a European "mind" and certainly
France is a central part of it? If you read Eliot, how can you not
notice his extreme reliance on French poetry in his early work?
Whatever else he was, he was not provincial. Why do you think he went
to Paris over and over? Why do you think so many Americans in the early
20th C went to live in Paris?
"You know nothing? Do you [read] nothing? Do you remember
I note some names from a text in "Readings in Western Civilization":
Rousseau, Corneille, Voltaire, Condorcet.
Condorcet's "The Progress of the Human Mind" is described by the editor
(I make no claim to French scholarship): "A great monument of liberal
thought, it is a summary of the major ideas of the Enlightenment, ideas
that have exerted a dominating influence on Western thought in the 19th
and 20th centuries."
It is not a recent textbook, but none of those names has ceased to
matter. Can we not have civilized discussions based in some actual text
and history? Words like "moron" and "stupid" and assumptions like the
idea that France is not an absolutely central part of Western
philosophy, literature, art, and culture simply waste words for the
purpose of--of what? Gratuitous meanness?
>>> [log in to unmask] 11/13/04 7:10 PM >>>
No doubt Carrol realizes this fact. And, he even puts down France as a
of Western Civilization. I wonder then, does he want us to live like
in Arab countries, led by a Shah, a King or the like, where there is not
education to be had outside of the very basics and the study of Islam,
the women cannot work, drive or choose their own husbands in some cases,
the majority of people are poorer than we can imagine. The explantion
Carrol may be that he dreams of harems.
In a message dated 11/13/2004 4:53:44 PM Eastern Standard Time,
[log in to unmask] writes:
Jacek Niecko wrote:
> Hasn't it occurred to you, you moron, that it is because of the
> civilization" for which you have so much stupid contempt, that today
> able to transmit such stupid garbage.
> Jacek Niecko
> Washington DC
Temper temper. Better check your blood pressure. :-)