Recently I selected two books - independently of one another - authored by a Victor Davis Hanson (website). Sometime later, going about my normal reading and research, I discovered that - what do you know - he's blogging for Pajamas Media.
Victor Davis Hanson, or V.D.H. as he is called, is a professor and military historian who grows raisins in California's central valley. That last enterprise (the raisins) is important: I have a spontaneous appreciation for intellectuals who include a little dirt in their diet, and though I'm sure I differ with Hanson significantly on many points, I respect his commitment to anchor himself in something tangible. That is valuable.
Hanson is an advocate of classical education, a supporter of the Iraq war, and a disillusioned Democrat. He writes prolifically, concentrating mainly on the historical interplay between war and culture: a significant discussion, to be sure.
At this level, this is not about agreement or disagreement: it's just about putting people on the map. I do not read classic literature because I agree with it, I read it in order to know what it says.
In a complex novel, it takes a few chapters before you're able to get the characters straightened out and start following the plot. The world is like that. It takes some time to begin to understand the plethora of essential personalities who have figured a part in the literary, technological, military, and philosophical history that has shaped - and is shaping - our world.
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