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    Inhaltsangabe

    In one of the most important books of our time, Allan Bloom, a professor of social thought at the University of Chicago and a noted translator of Plato and Rousseau, argues that the social and political crisis of 20th-century America is really an intellectual crisis. Bloom cites everything from the universities' lack of purpose to the students' lack of learning, from the jargon of liberation to the supplanting of reason by so-called creativity. Furthermore, he shows how American democracy has unwittingly played host to vulgarized Continental ideas of nihilism and despair, of relativism disguised as tolerance, while demonstrating that the collective mind of the American university is closed to the very principles of spiritual heritage that gave rise to the university in the first place.
    (P)1992 by Blackstone Audiobooks; ©1987 by Alan Bloom

    Kritikerstimmen

    "With clarity, gravity, and grace, Bloom makes a convincing case for the improbable proposition that reading old books about the permanent questions could help to reestablish reason and restore the soul." (Mary Ann Glendon, Harvard University)

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    • Gesamt
      4 out of 5 stars
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    Strangely resonant with our own time

    Allan Bloom writes from a place and views the world from a place, where few people stood at the time and, probably, even fewer stands today. His book is from the eighties, but he only discusses authors and books at least a couple of hundred years older. His firm stance in a 1000 year old intellectual discussion and striving make him see his contemporaries and our time in an unflattering light. The title of the book is The Closing of the American Mind, but having read it, I'm not sure as to when he thought the American Mind had been open. There might have been an option and a chance of openness, but with the radicalism of the sixties and the abandonment of the tradition, the universities catered more to democracy than to truth, and no longer believed that there were Great Books that should be read, understood and discussed.
    Allan Bloom refers a lot to Nietzsche and Rousseau, and has a sharp and entligthning knowledge and eye to how and why they have influenced, well practically, everybody, I found.
    The title of the book is the closing of the American Mind, but in an interview with William F Buckley, he mentioned his preferred title had been Souls Without Longings. This title brings Nietzsche's writings about the Last Man into memory, and Bloom definitely does owe a lot to him. There is insight and knowledge to be had from reading Bloom, but in the modern science of today, I feel more can be learned about man and the universe, than from Bloom's great books, though he has gained and envious level of knowledge, perspicacity and wisdom.

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    Background noise

    You can hear very faint background noise (people talking). Extremely annoying. Unfortunately not the first time I’ve had this. Apart from that I highly recommend this audiobook.