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
17.4 (Fall 2017)
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 (2016), 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
Literacy vs. Post-Modernity
Reviewing why the Center for Literate Values failed elicits from its founder not so much nostalgia over times past as as regret over his own ineptitude; but even more than any one person’s ineptitude, this failure indicts our time’s downward-trending cultural vectors.
From science-fiction classics of the Fifties to “cyberpunk” games of the present century, the emerging picture in our pop-culture of a dystopic future conceals implies a veiled but deep mistrust of the progressive vision.
The Literary Heritage
In this final edition of Praesidium, it is exquisitely fitting that one of our contributors should revisit J.R.R. Tolkien’s brilliantly imaginative defense of Europe’s pre-Renaissance traditions, and especially of Christendom.
The E-World vs. Free Speech
Repost, Retweet Culture Wesley Ross Harris
Whether or not the First Amendment escapes a haircut will prove largely irrelevant if “retweet culture” conditions us to file like cattle down narrow chutes of intellectual activity.
Faith vs. Cultural Meltdown
Linear Time and Real Time: Time to Consider the Difference John R. Harris
The human mind is hard-wired to arrange events in linear time; but the ultimate truth may be otherwise, and a morally responsible spirituality will require at some point that we entertain other possibilities.
Fiction & Poetry
Pseudo-Artificial Intelligence Ivor Davies
In his final burlesque of our chaotic academic scene, Davies shows a beleaguered instructor on a futuristic campus using “pseudo-artificial” intelligence as his “get out of jail” card.
Alternative Idiots: A Politically Radioactive Fable Peter Singleton
What makes an animal fable “politically radioactive”? Nothing, if you’re not paying attention to current events.
Eventually, It All Gets Used John R. Harris
A farewell poem to the Center’s ambitious project and, indeed, to youth and its naiveté, this poem nevertheless offers one overarching hope about our lives: though our preparation doesn’t go the way we’d planned, “eventually, it all gets used.”