Peter Kalkavage’s The Logic of Desire presents an exemplary attitude for a reader to adopt toward a book. To use a fancy term, it embodies a “hermeneutic,” a principle of interpretation. The most respectful such hermeneutic rule I know is the so-called “principle of charity:” give the text a chance to make maximum sense. Mr. Kalkavage outdoes this principle by embracing a “principle of appreciation:” savor and learn from the text to the utmost of your ability. The principle of appreciation is to the principle of charity as awed generosity is to squint-eyed tolerance—a way of treating a book with magnanimity rather than with mere civility.
Books by Eva Brann may be found in The Imaginative Conservative Bookstore. We hope you will join us in The Imaginative Conservative community. The Imaginative Conservative is an on-line journal for those who seek the True, the Good and the Beautiful. We address culture, liberal learning, politics, political economy, literature, the arts and the American Republic in the tradition of Russell Kirk, T.S. Eliot, Edmund Burke, Irving Babbitt, Wilhelm Roepke, Robert Nisbet, Richard Weaver, M.E. Bradford, Eric Voegelin, Christopher Dawson, Paul Elmer More and other leaders of Imaginative Conservatism. Some conservatives may look at the state of Western culture and the American Republic and see a huge dark cloud which seems ready to unleash a storm that may well wash away what we most treasure of our inherited ways. Others focus on the silver lining which may be found in the next generation of traditional conservatives who have been inspired by Dr. Kirk and his like. We hope that The Imaginative Conservative answers T.S. Eliot’s call to “redeem the time, redeem the dream.” The Imaginative Conservative offers to our families, our communities, and the Republic, a conservatism of hope, grace, charity, gratitude and prayer.