U.S. Intellectual History Blog

Tim’s Light Reading

1. Intellectual historian Wilfred McClay on the idea of Lincoln, or our changing views of Lincoln’s greatness.

2. Sometime conservative historian of education and intellectual Diane Ravitch on how teachers’ unions are NOT the problem. You read that right. She also cites the UDHR and the current economic climate on why unions are important in general.

3. Baylor professor of philosophy Alexander Pruss speculates on why we, as humans, move with more epistemological certainty from effects to causes than from causes to effects, even when reason tells us what will happen. Perhaps this is why we have academic history departments in universities, but not departments for futurists?

– TL

4 Thoughts on this Post

  1. No doubt. I mean, business folks buy futures. It stands to reason that futurists would study this phenomenon. 😉 Kidding aside, I knew about the arts and architecture folks dealing in futurism. – TL

  2. Thanks for the links, Tim! In the many rather triumphalist online discussions after the election about whether or not there were any conservative thinkers who progressives ought to pay attention to, Diane Ravitch was one of the first names that came to my mind as someone who almost always has valuable things to say to those of us on the other side of the political fence.

  3. Ben,

    I’ve found Diane Ravitch’s conversations with Deborah Meier to be quite revealing. While Professor Ravitch is not as radical or left-of-center as Meier, Ravitch is not nearly as conservative as her reputation. She’s right of center, yes, but not an ideological conservative by any means.

    Aside: That Bridging Differences post might be the most commented one I’ve seen there. There must be a lot of lurkers, or else the post was cross-listed by a number of folks like me.

    – TL

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