From Commonweal Via Arts And Letters Daily: Terry Eagleton “On Culture And Barbarism”

Full article here.

More On Eagleton here (wikipedia).

There’s pretty deep insight in the article, but you have to sift it out:

“Postmodernism is more perceptive about lifestyles than it is about material interests-better on identity than oil. As such it has an ironic affinity with radical Islam, which also holds that what is ultimately at stake are beliefs and values.”

If he means that both are on shaky epistemological ground, then I agree.

“Part of what has happened in our time is that God has shifted over from the side of civilization to the side of barbarism”

Perhaps, but maybe only if you envision the following:

“Tragic humanism, whether in its socialist, Christian, or psychoanalytic varieties, holds that only by a process of self-dispossession and radical remaking can humanity come into its own. There are no guarantees that such a transfigured future will ever be born. But it might arrive a little earlier if liberal dogmatists, doctrinaire flag-wavers for Progress, and Islamophobic intellectuals got out of its way”

I guess if you’re dealing in guarantees on transfigured futures (on a Marxist platform) the best you can do is try and update your “beliefs and values…” as well.

Isn’t good literature deeper than leftist and rightist analysis?

Addition:  If the British left, and Eagleton as somewhat representative of it, can’t sanely recognize that part of the problem is the way that Muslims seek a religious kingdom here on earth, and that there can’t be reasonable discussion of this, then…see here, where Roger Scruton suggests a return to religious virtue: From The City Journal: Roger Scruton On “Forgiveness And Irony”

See Also:  Roger Scruton In The American Spectator: The New Humanism…From Nigel Warburton’s Site: A Definition of Humanism?…From The City Journal Via Arts And Letters Daily: Andre Glucksman On “The Postmodern Financial Crisis”

Leave a Reply