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What is a Fact?

What is a fact? Few more thorny questions exist. Consider this, from Hannah Arendt’s essay, “Truth and Politics:” But do facts, independent of opinion and interpretation, exist at all? Have not generations of historians and philosophers of history demonstrated the impossibility of ascertaining facts without interpretation, since they must first be picked out of a…Read more What is a Fact? Posted on 7 December 2012 | 1:23 pm

A Common Faith

Academics ignore novelists at their peril. Especially in the case of Marilynne Robinson. Robinson’s novels are extraordinary (my favorite is Gilead) but her essays are equally illuminating. Take for instance her most recent offering “A Common Faith” published by Guernica. One hazards to simplify an essay whose essential thrust is to oppose simplification.  Robinson begins…Read more A Common Faith Posted on 6 April 2012 | 12:06 pm

Marilynne Robinson on Jon Stewart on Human Exceptionalism

Marilyn Robinson has a new book, Absence of Mind, which she discusses here with Jon Stewart. Her best line: I don’t think it’s scientific to proceed from the study of ants to a conclusion about the nature of the cosmos. Marilynne Robinson on the Daily Show A number of years ago Wyatt Mason, now Senior…Read more Marilynne Robinson on Jon Stewart on Human Exceptionalism Posted on 11 July 2010 | 11:32 pm