News and Site Highlights Archives
(Also see our newsletter, Permanent Things.)
Birzer on Kirk and Strauss
We direct your attention to a recent post on the Imaginative Conservative Blog where Brad Birzer has collected a few forgotten items from the Kirk Center archives and elsewhere on the relationship of Russell Kirk and Leo Strauss. It was more amicable than is generally recognized; in 1963 Kirk pronounced Strauss “on the side of the angels.” We look forward to further research in this area.
The latest number of the Russell Kirk Center newsletter (Spring 2011) has just been posted. It features a profile of Ian Crowe, the new editor of Studies in Burke and His Times and an interview with W. Winston Elliott III. You can download it, and past issues, here.
Recommended reading on economics
In Public Discourse, the online journal of the Witherspoon Institute, Ryan Anderson has a two-part article on the flaws of modern economics (part one) (part two). We commend it to your attention. Anderson notes the lacunae in modern economic thought, which has little heed for concepts such as distribution, love, and the family that had once been central to Western economic thinking.
ISI Announces New President
Congratulations to Christopher Long, the new President and Chief Executive Officer of the Intercollegiate Studies Institute. Chris Long succeeds T. Kenneth Cribb, Jr., who has been named president emeritus.
The Kirk Center warmly welcomes Chris and bids a very fond bon voyage to Ken, under whose guidance for more than two decades, ISI grew to become the main organization providing college and graduate students with programs, scholarships, mentors, and books that promote intellectual conservatism.
In a 2003 video interview, Annette Kirk reflects on the crucial importance of the mission of ISI in its work of educating leaders for the academy and the professions. She also recounts the long and fruitful relationship the Kirks have had with ISI. It was on a walk along the coast of Fife in Scotland in 1973 that then young ISI staffers Ken Cribb and Bob Schadler agreed with Russell and Annette Kirk that ISI seminars for serious students interested in the liberal arts should take place at Piety Hill. And so they have—now for almost four decades.
After many years of success in the financial sector, Chris Long returns to ISI where he was once himself a young staffer. Chris was a principal architect of the ISI educational program in the 1990s and a good friend to the Piety Hill experience. We look forward to his able stewardship of the ISI program for years to come.
William Rusher, R.I.P.
As so many have pointed out, all his life, Bill Rusher provided energetic and steady leadership to the conservative movement.
While much appreciated for his wit and wisdom, I was especially grateful for his invaluable support of my efforts to found the Russell Kirk Center after Russell’s death in 1994. He not only agreed to take Russell’s place on the board of the Wilbur Foundation, but he offered the resolution to continue the Foundation’s residential fellows program here under my direction. Now in its thirty-first year, this program has provided hundreds of scholars with lodging, access to an excellent library and a modest stipend while they write their books or dissertations.
In addition, Bill wrote a beautiful tribute to Russell, “Death of a Giant,” in The University Bookman and gave a lecture, “Conservatism’s Third and Final Battle” in the Russell Kirk Memorial Lecture Series at the Heritage Foundation in which he described the battle as between two diametrically opposed “metaphysical dreams of reality.”
Bill was indeed an ally and a friend when I most needed one. He truly deserves the eternal reward he most surely has been given.
Gerald Russello reviews Freedom at Risk by James Buckley in the May 2011 issue of The American Conservative.
Reinsch on Chambers
The Bookman is pleased to highlight an essay on the enduring relevance of Whittaker Chambers from Bookman friend and contributor Richard Reinsch. It is a concise summary of his book on Chambers, published recently by ISI.
Welcome to the new Bookman
The Imaginative Conservative blog has been posting lots of great material by and about Russell Kirk, including Kirk’s reflection on the twelve days of Christmas, the 1953 review of The Conservative Mind from the New York Times, and a selection on the unbought grace of life. We certainly commend the site for your reading and reflection.
Bookman in Print