The West
A Tribute to Ideas that Make Us

In Defense of the West

In Defense of the West

By KATHARINE SAVAGE Where I live, mention the Great Books or the Western tradition, and you are likely given a polite sneer, at best. At worst, you’ll hear the all too familiar string of adjectives: “racist,” “post-colonial,” “bigoted.” And this is a real conundrum...

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Powerful and Dangerous: Men Are Not Angels

Powerful and Dangerous: Men Are Not Angels

Men are not Angels Thomas Hobbes, describing a condition without government called the “state of nature,” said that the life of man without authority is “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short.” Human beings are naturally ambitious, greedy, interested in their own...

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Kings Who are Subjects and Subjects Who are Kings

Kings Who are Subjects and Subjects Who are Kings

In the year 410 AD, a new “order” for governing nations emerged, not from a king, but from a theologian. His idea remained with us into the twentieth century. Its slow loss threatens our freedom in the twenty-first. The sacking of Rome by Aleric the Visigoth inspired...

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Luther’s Transformation of Western Civilization

Luther’s Transformation of Western Civilization

"EVERYONE IS RESPONSIBLE FOR HIS OWN FAITH, AND HE MUST SEE TO IT FOR HIMSELF THAT HE BELIEVES RIGHTLY.” --Martin Luther Literacy in the West From the start of the reformation in 1519, literacy rates across the West skyrocketed. See the interactive literacy rate chart...

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The Formation of the First “University”

The Formation of the First “University”

By ANTHONY M. ESOLEN The first time I visited the Sistine Chapel, I didn’t know much about Christian painting.  I did know a lot about the faith, though now I see that I was just starting on that journey.  I remember there were crowded lines down the stairs, and...

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Christ, the Crux of Human History

Christ, the Crux of Human History

By DR. BRIAN A. WILLIAMS “Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? … For Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, but to those who are called, both Jews and...

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IN THE BEGINNING WAS THE WORD—A REVOLUTIONARY IDEA LOST

IN THE BEGINNING WAS THE WORD—A REVOLUTIONARY IDEA LOST

By LOUIS MARKOS Plato's Idea of Standards “Behold,” wrote the ancient Greek philosopher Plato some 2400 years ago, “we are deceived about the very nature of the world in which we live. We are like men who have been imprisoned since birth in the deep belly of a cave....

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First University

First University

Google the question, “What is the oldest university,” and a small but emphatic contingent will name the University of Al-Quaraouiyine in Fez, Morocco. Does the term “university” apply to this school? According to many websites, Al-Qarawiyyin itself didn’t...

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Nicene Creed

Nicene Creed

Shown above: Icon depicting the Emperor Constantine, accompanied by the bishops of the First Council of Nicaea (325), holding the Niceno–Constantinopolitan Creed of 381. Required memory work at many classical Christian schools, this statement of faith was...

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Transcendent: The Not-So-Obvious Idea About God

Transcendent: The Not-So-Obvious Idea About God

By DOUGLAS WILSON If you are willing to indulge me for a moment, picture two different whales. One of the whales inhabits an ocean that we might call “reality,” or “all that exists.” He is the biggest and strongest resident of that ocean, but he is nevertheless...

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