A Confederacy of Dunces: quotes (24)

Opening his desk, he looked at a pile of articles he had once written with an eye to the magazine market. For the journals of opinion there were “Boethius Observed” and “In Defense of Hroswitha: To Those Who Say She Did Not Exist.” For the family magazines he had written “The Death of Rex” and “Children, the Hope of the World.” In an attempt to crack the Sunday supplement market he had done “The Challenge of Water Safety,” “The Danger of Eight-Cylinder Automobiles,” “Abstinence, the Safest Method of Birth Control,” and “New Orleans, City of Romance and Culture.”  As he looked though the old manuscripts, he wondered why he had failed to send any of them off, for each was excellent in its own way.

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On Civility

The very excellent Elizabeth Corey in an Oakeshottian frame of mind.

It concerns the entire person—body, mannerisms, and speech—and it signals respect for oneself and others. Civility here is graciousness and courtesy, kindness and respect, other-regarding action that greases the wheels of human interaction. . . . Civility is not much prized in our revolutionary climate because it is a deeply traditional practice.

Raymond Aron

Died on this date in 1983. My co-authored chapter on Aron’s The Opium of the Intellectuals for Anthem’s Companion to Raymond Aron is now in press.

Chess as Played by Artificial Intelligence

A terrific overview of the history of chess machines. It brought back memories of several of those iterations. Article is freely available here.

Zeno’s Conscience: quotes (23)

And despite the fact that I was so different from him, I believe he reciprocated my affection with equal fondness. I would be more certain of this if he hadn’t died so soon. He continued assiduously giving me lessons after my marriage and he often seasoned them with shouts and insults, which I accepted, convinced that I deserved them.
I married his daughter. Mysterious Mother Nature led me and it will be seen with what imperative violence.

A Confederacy of Dunces: quotes (23)

Suddenly Mrs. Reilly remembered the horrible night that she and Mr. Reilly had gone to the Prytania to see Clark Gable and Jean Harlow in Red Dust. In the heat and confusion that had followed their return home, nice Mr. Reilly had tried one of his indirect approaches, and Ignatius was conceived. Poor Mr. Reilly. He had never gone to another movie as long as he lived.

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