The Constitution of Order in a Self-Governing Society

The very excellent Philanthropic Enterprise has teemed up with the Smith-Tocqueville Center at Michigan State University to issue a call for papers for the 2017 Conference on Voluntary Governance.


A Portrait of the Kabbalist as a Young Man: Count Joseph Carl Emmanuel Waldstein and His Retinue

My “old” Oxford chum, a real scholar, has just had this paper published — 10 years in the making! Jewish Quarterly Review, Volume 106, Number 4, Fall 2016. The intro to the piece as follows:

IN 2009, WHILE GATHERING MATERIALS for a book on Frankism, I made a pilgrimage to the grave of the famous adventurer Giacomo Casanova. My interest in Casanova was triggered by my discovery of his correspondence with Eve, the daughter of the Jewish heresiarch Jacob Frank. A single letter from this correspondence appears in a forlorn Italian publication curated by Carlo L. Curiel, Gustavo Gugitz, and Aldo Rava` in 1930, but the epistolary collection has never been discussed systematically by Casanova researchers. With one exception, it has gone unmentioned as well by the scholars of Frankism. While reading works by and about Casanova, I learned that he had had numerous contacts with Jews, including with some who were kabbalists. I was also told— wrongly as it turned out—that copies of Casanova’s literary estate remain intact at the location where he labored over his memoir and died, the Chateau of Duchcov (Dux) in Bohemia. I suspected that the estate might contain unpublished materials germane to the subject of my research.


Little Richard

Born on this day — a most radical and brave pioneer.

Little Richard told Blackwell he preferred the sound of Fats Domino. As a result, Little Richard began recording at Cosimo Matassa’s J&M Studios in New Orleans that September, recording there with several of Domino’s session musicians, including drummer Earl Palmer and saxophonist Lee Allen.[39] The initial cuts failed to produce anything that would inspire huge sales, and Little Richard and his producer took a break at a club called the Dew Drop Inn. While there, Little Richard performed a risqué song he had improvised from his days on the club circuit called “Tutti Frutti”.[40] The song’s a cappella introduction was based on a drum rhythm Little Richard had devised. Blackwell felt the song had hit potential and hired songwriter Dorothy LaBostrie to replace some of Little Richard’s sexual lyrics with less controversial words.[41][42] Recorded in three takes in September 1955, “Tutti Frutti” was released as a single in November.[43] — Wikipedia


Blue & Lonesome

The latest Stones album has dropped. The reviews seem to be universally glowing and for a change devoid of the tired journalistic cliches that typically accompany a Stones release, not too mention the accompanying label hype that “this is the best thing they have done since . . .  Tattoo You/Some Girls/Exile on Main Street” — you know the score. The sound, at least going by below does seem to have an exciting early 60s freshness to it.

The Telegraph

The Independent


Walker Percy: Pathologist, Philosopher, and Novelist

Here is the just published collection of papers in ZYGON. A big thanks to all the contributors and to ZYGON’S ecumenical editor for his patient shepherding of the project.