The Center for Literate Values ~ Defending the Western tradition of responsible individualism, disciplined freedom, tasteful creativity, common sense, and faith in a supreme moral being.
P R A E S I D I U M
A Common-Sense Journal of Literary and Cultural Analysis
14.3 (Summer 2014)
A Quarterly Publication of the Center for Literate Values
All contents of this journal are copyrighted by The Center for Literate Values of Tyler, Texas (2014), and may not be cited at length or reproduced without The Center’s express permission.
John R. Harris, Ph.D.
University of Texas, Tyler
Thomas F. Bertonneau, Ph.D.
Helen R. Andretta, Ph.D.
Michael H. Lythgoe
Lt. Col. USAF (Retd.)
Contents of This Issue
Wordsworth’s View of Imagination: The Essential Building-Block of Morality Wesley Ross Harris
Perhaps the most beloved English Romantic poet of them all reminds us that goodness is a product of free will, that free will chooses among possible actions, and that a vibrant imagination is essential to the conceiving of possibilities.
Academe in Decay
As this author’s institution struggles to defend its contribution to the curriculum, he discovers that the usual lines of defense have been strangely turned upon each other by the electronic age.
Erchomenology: The Study of Things to Come John R. Harris
An academic ought to be able to project the future better than anyone after having spent so much time studying history, culture, the economy… everything, apparently, but human nature. That single omission turns out to account for a miserable ineptitude at prognostication.
The Polis vs. Progress
Genres like science fiction and fantasy are usually considered anything but traditional—and, indeed, the most celebrated authors of this sort are often political progressives. Yet their work, perhaps in spite of itself, tends to have many nostalgic or conservative qualities.
Slavery by Any Other Name John R. Harris
A collection of slave narratives amassed by Roosevelt’s WPA reveals that the South’s “peculiar institution” had many aspects never mentioned in today’s popular culture—and that, unfortunately, the desire to be “cared after” lingers.
Faith & Cultural Meltdown
Human Free Will vs. Modern Science’s Will to Power John R. Harris
A major reason for the distressful schism between religious faith and modern science is the latter’s supercilious dismissal of free will. This misplaced confidence that all can be explained mechanically has contributed much to the dehumanization of our living patterns.
Voyage to the Moon (excerpts), by Cyrano de Bergerac based on A. Lovell’s translation
The flamboyant Cyrano de Bergerac penned an extraordinary little burlesque novel in the middle of the seventeenth century that deserves to be much better known. Its English translation from the same period is available online free of charge.
The Apprentice David Z. Crookes
This delightful celebration of “dilettantism” will make any reader want to run for paper, watercolors, and perhaps a turtle or an electric fan.
Chaotic Times in Rhythmic Seasons Michael H. Lythgoe
With Memorial Day and the D-Day anniversary recently past, and with so many time-bombs ticking around the globe, Col. Lythgoe’s poems seem even more relevant than usual–especially, perhaps, in their reminder that life continues despite the times.
Humor and Satire
Linguistic Death Watch Staff
“By not medaling in other affairs doesn’t initial living on your own aisle.” Translation, please?