January 30, 2006

In a World Where No One is Ever Kidding...

Robert Kagan, on the state of not being a Straussian:

I have long admired the work of Allan Bloom, Harry Jaffa, Harvey Mansfield, and Thomas Pangle--though not, I must say, Leo Strauss himself, since I have never understood a word the political philosopher wrote. I mean not a single word...

It is true that I have known Straussians almost all my life. And the one thing I was taught about them from the earliest age is that they are wrong. The person who taught me this was my father, an ancient historian who spent a good portion of his time at Cornell University in the 1960s arguing with Allan Bloom. As a youngster of eight or nine I got to witness many of these arguments in the faculty lunch room at the Statler, where my father would take me on summer days. They were fun. For one thing, Bloom was an incredible character, though to my youthful eye he acted, talked, and dressed a bit silly. I remember being absolutely enthralled by his famous stutter. He would start a sentence by saying, "The-ah, the-ah, the-ah, the-ah, the-ah truth that Socrates was, ah, seeking . . . " Something like that. Also, whenever I saw him he would practically squeeze the life out of me with a bear-hug. It was actually painful. And he once accidentally stubbed a cigar out on my hand at a poker game.

But that's not the reason I never became a Straussian...

(via Clive Davis.)

Posted by Dr. Frank at January 30, 2006 08:55 PM | TrackBack

Yep, I'm fascinated by this Frey (and JT Leroy) stuff, too. Having said that, I thinky ou'd really be interested in this, the guy who outed Frey back in 2003, before Oprah canonized him--


That's my, uh, "blog," by the way. LJ.

Posted by: Oliver at January 30, 2006 09:43 PM

Go Big Red.

Posted by: josh at January 30, 2006 10:25 PM