The Breast To Rule Them All

The breast is best. That signifies the central importance of breastfeeding. But one could also take it as pointing to our cultural obsession with human mammary glands, something not shared by all cultures. I’m going to make the argument that the breast, at least in American society, is the main site of social control. Before […]

The Crisis of Identity

“Besides real diseases we are subject to many that are only imaginary, for which the physicians have invented imaginary cures; these have then several names, and so have the drugs that are proper to them.” ~Jonathan Swift, 1726 Gulliver’s Travels “The alarming increase in Insanity, as might naturally be expected, has incited many persons to […]

Reactionary Revolutionaries, Faceless Men, and God in the Gutter

“Just as terror, even in its pre-total, merely tyrannical form ruins all relationships between men, so the self-compulsion of ideological thinking ruins all relationship with reality. The preparation has succeeded when people have contact with their fellow men as well as the reality around them; for together with these contacts, men lose the capacity of […]

Unlabeled Metaphors

At the blog Against the Lie, Eric Huebeck had an interesting post, How religious esotericism is really just a form of lying. I’m not sure what I think about his views on esotericism, as Lynne Kelly argues that mnemonic practices (that could be interpreted as esotericism) were how oral cultures maintained vast stores of complex knowledge across […]

Shadows of Moral Imagination

“Until the day breaks and the shadows flee…” – Song of Solomon 2:17 “The moral imagination,” Russel Kirk wrote, “aspires to the apprehending of right order in the soul and right order in the commonwealth.” He resurrected the Burkean moral imagination and maybe modernized it in the process. Jonathan Leamon Jones, similar to Gerald Russello and William […]

Lock Without a Key

In his recent book The “Other” Psychology of Julian Jaynes, Brian J. McVeigh brings the latest evidence to bear on the the theory of the bicameral mind. His focus is on textual evidence, the use of what he calls mind words and their frequency. But before getting to the evidence itself, he clarifies a number […]

“First came the temple, then the city.”

“Landscape is memory, and memory in turn compresses to become the rich black seam that underlies our territory.” ~Alan Moore, Coal Country, from Spirits of Place “Ever place has its own… proliferation of stories and every spatial practice constitutes a form of re-narrating or re-writing a place… Walking [into a place] affirms, suspects, tries out, […]