Plus, The 50 best books of the 20th century, the case to bring back single-sex spaces, and Wordsworth on the power of habit
How Mumford & Sons lost its heart
The best of intellectual conservative thought, every Thursday. Subscribe here to receive the Intercollegiate Review in your inbox every week.
CATEGORY: POPULAR CULTURE (5 min)
The band Mumford & Sons holds a special place in the hearts of many young conservatives.
Their early songs were filled with references to Plato, Shakespeare, and the Bible.
And at the heart of their sound was the signature style of banjo player Winston Marshall.
Today, that heart’s gone.
Marshall recently made the mistake of tweeting his support for a book about increasing violence on the far left.
You can guess what happened from there.
But Marshall isn’t backing down. He’s walking away from his lucrative dream job rather than compromise his integrity and succumb to the woke mob.
Writing in the American Conservative, ISI alumnus Micah Meadowcroft points to Marshall’s story as another sign that the political has swallowed up the arts.
But he also says that artists like Marshall show that we can return to an older, truer form of artistic expression.
It takes about as long to read this article as it does to listen to “Little Lion Man.” Try doing both at the same time.
And when you hear that banjo solo, remember it’s being played by a man with a lion’s heart.
CATEGORY: POLITICAL DISCOURSE (30 min)
How many times have you heard this phrase about a political statement: “take it seriously, not literally”?
This seems like a recent phenomenon, but it’s part of a long rhetorical tradition.
We convey important truths all the time when our statements aren’t literally true.
Think of satire, hyperbole, fables, and metaphors.
These are all wonderful communication tools . . .
. . . but only if you understand them and their relationship to the truth.
Enter Andy Smarick.
Over at National Affairs, Smarick has put together a comprehensive guide to understanding these tools and how they’re used in politics.
Read this article to discover:
- Why “seriously, not literally” doesn’t excuse every falsehood
- Why truth and meaning have a complicated relationship in our political discourse
- How to use satire responsibly
- Why some institutions have a special obligation to the truth
- Which form of communication is especially useful—but especially dangerous
Nuance and subtlety are becoming rare in our politics. So read this article before you sit through another debate.
Cornell Goes Woke During Virtual Reunion via the Cornell Review
Clarence Thomas Is Wrong About Public Schools via Lone Conservative
CATEGORY: VOCATIONS (8 min)
What do you want to be when you grow up?
If you’re in high school or college, you’re probably getting that question a lot.
Even if you’ve been in the working world for years, you might still be asking yourself that question.
But what if thinking about what job you want is the wrong way to approach the future?
In this week’s archive pull, Gene Edward Veith, author and provost emeritus at Patrick Henry College, shows that vocations are more than just jobs. They’re callings that help us serve our neighbors and our communities.
So how do you discover your vocation?
Veith has lots of practical advice for you. This is a must-read whether you’re a student or you’ve been in the workplace for years.
One of the biggest questions facing conservatives is whether we need to rethink our approach to the economy.
That’s why ISI is hosting The Future of American Political Economy Conference July 23–24 in Alexandria, Virginia.
During this weekend conference, you’ll hear from an all-star roster of conservative thinkers as they discuss solutions to the threats of Big Tech censorship, our trade relationship with China, and a market economy that seems increasingly anti-family.
Registration is only $50 if you’re under 30, and if you’re currently a full-time student, admission is free!
Reserve your spot now to hear from prominent speakers like:
- J. D. Vance, author of the #1 bestseller Hillbilly Elegy—who is considering a run for the U.S. Senate
- Senator Marco Rubio
- Amity Shlaes, bestselling author of The Forgotten Man and Coolidge
- Jeff Sessions, former U.S. attorney general
- Judge Neomi Rao
- . . . and nearly 20 others!
“There is no greatness where simplicity, goodness, and truth are absent.”
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