Column: Contours of Culture

Musical Measures

by Ken Myers

One of the defining features of modern culture is the denial of an order in the structure of Creation. In The Abolition of Man, C. S. Lewis argues that until the advent of modernity, all human cultures assumed that the principal aim of wise living was to grow in the knowledge of “how to conform the soul to reality.” By contrast, the typically modern preoccupation (propelled by technological prowess) is with “how to subdue reality to the wishes of men.”