Feature

Listening Up

Historical Truth, Beguiling Stories & Three Kinds of Hearers by Anthony Esolen

There once was a man.

Almost thirty years ago, the students at Alfred University, named for its small town of Alfred, New York, expressed their concern that a statue of King Alfred the Great, standing on campus, might be the wrong choice for a logo to advertise the school. One female student, a junior in English, noted: "If he was living in this day, would he endorse the education of women and minorities? Back then, education was just for the aristocratic males."

Well, it was not, really. Charlemagne himself, who inaugurated a minor educational and cultural renaissance in France, could read but not write. Alfred, who could do . . .

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Anthony Esolen is a professor and writer-in-residence at Magdalene College of the Liberal Arts in Warner, New Hampshire. His many books include Sex in the Unreal City: The Demolition of the Western Mind, Life Under Compulsion: Ten Ways to Destroy the Humanity of Your Child, Out of the Ashes: Rebuilding American Culture, and The Hundredfold: Songs for the Lord. He is a regular contributor to Chronicles, Crisis Magazine, The Claremont Review, Inside the Vatican Things, The Catholic Thing, and American Greatness. He has translated Dante's Divine Comedy. He is a Roman Catholic and lives with his wife in New Hampshire. He is a senior editor of Touchstone.


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