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Jesse Norman on Liberal Education/ Orsi on Oakeshott and International Relations

Listen to Jesse Norman’s Oakeshott talk. Also an article recently published by Davide Orsi. Introduction Michael Oakeshott’s thought has been considered from a great variety of perspectives and has been interpreted in many, often divergent, ways. For example, scholars have placed his works in the context of the history of philosophy and they have highlighted their relationship…

On Hating and Despising Philosophy

Bernard Williams in the LRB reprinted in Essays and Reviews: 1959-2002. An update, see: The London Review of Books. As long as there has been such a subject as philosophy, there have been people who hated and despised it. I do not want to exaggerate, in a self-pitying or self-dramatising way, the present extent or intensity of this dislike; I…

The Religious Sensibility of Michael Oakeshott

Snippets from Elizabeth Corey’s essay: Perhaps what is most notable about the Tower of Babel myth, in both of Oakeshott’s essays, is the perfectionism inherent in the story. Whether one wants to contribute to a great and noble cause or to change the world through human action, pride and overestimation lie at the center of…

Rationalism in Politics

In anticipation of a talk I’m giving later on in the week on Oakeshott’s so-called “dispositional conservatism”, here is a nice little piece by my chum Gene Callahan serving as a good introduction to RIP. The British philosopher and historian Michael Oakeshott is a curious figure in twentieth-century intellectual history. He is known mostly as…

Clouding Conservatism

Yet more Oakeshottiana. Here is a brief review by Elizabeth Corey of The Meanings of Michael Oakeshott’s Conservatism (table of contents). Corey summarizes why Oakeshott’s supposed conservatism equally frustrates self-avowed conservatives and liberal critics: in the second excerpt she neatly captures the appeal of Oakeshott for someone such as myself. (See also another recent posting). In…