Political Memoirs

Political Memoirs

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Ranked by many scholars as one of the most important moral philosophers of the twentieth century, Aurel Kolnai has been inexplicably neglected in this country until quite recently. He is best known for his works of political philosophy, recently published under the title The Utopian Mind: A Critical Study in Moral and Political Philosophy. Here, for the first time ever in English, is Kolnai's magnum opus, his Political Memoirs, superbly annotated and edited by Francesca Murphy of the University of Aberdeen, Scotland. The memoirs recount the author's life, from his childhood in the turn-of-the-century Austro-Hungarian Empire to his education in Germany and his early professional life in prewar Vienna. It was in these formative years that he converted from Judaism to Roman Catholicism and began his career as a writer and philosopher. The narrative continues through his years in exile in the United States and Canada, where he lived before ultimately settling in Great Britain and being granted citizenship in 1955.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 304 pages
  • 155.4 x 235.2 x 21.6mm | 512.57g
  • Lexington Books
  • Lanham, MD, United States
  • English
  • Annotated
  • New.
  • 0739100653
  • 9780739100653

Review quote

Karl Popper wrote, "I personally think I could learn more from Kolnai, by way of stimulation, than from any other thinker in the field of political philosophy alive." ... There seems finally to be a (slowly) growing recognition of Kolnai's achievements; ... now we have Kolnai's provocative memoirs, nicely edited by Francesca Murphy. -- Lee Congdon, James Madison University Political Memoirs is a personal, passionate account of a man who was witness to and perceptive about the major events of the beginning and middle of the twentieth century. Kolnai writes from a cultural background with which few will be familiar. Yet he managed to know many of the leading intellectual figures and movements of this era. These memoirs are full of personal insight that, as an autobiography should, constantly touch on ultimate things... With a combination of frustration and amusement, Kolnai pointed out the modern difficulty in understanding genuine conservative thought. -- James V. Schall, S.J., Georgetown Universityshow more

About Aurel Kolnai

Francesca Murphy is in the Department of Divinity with Religious Studies at the University of Aberdeen.show more

Table of contents

Chapter 1 Acknowledgments Chapter 2 Aurel Kolnai: Ten Plagues and Ten Commandments Chapter 3 Biographical Notes Chapter 4 Introduction Part 5 Chapter 1 Armageddon Chapter 6 One's Choice Is One's Law Chapter 7 The Theme of the Great War Chapter 8 Lutheran "Obergymnasium" Chapter 9 The Double Consciousness Chapter 10 The Twisting of the Theme Part 11 Chapter 2 Shadows of Totality Chapter 12 The End of the World: Swift and Unnoticed Chapter 13 The Ghost of Reaction Chapter 14 The Mirage of Progress Chapter 15 Revolution, or the Fool's Paradise Part 16 Chapter 3 When Tyranny Was Young Chapter 17 The Impact of Bolshevism Chapter 18 Homeward Exile Chapter 19 My Crimes Against Psychoanalysis Chapter 20 Ideas, Contacts and Polemics Part 21 Chapter 4 In Statu Viae Chapter 22 Conversion: "Metanoia" and Fulfillment Chapter 23 The Decision Chapter 24 God and Church Chapter 25 Catholicism Chapter 26 Paths That Lead to Rome: Spiritual Aspects Part 27 Chapter 5 Chesterton and Realism Chapter 28 Nearer to Me than I am to Myself Chapter 29 Paths that Lead to Rome: Some Literary and Personal Influences Chapter 30 Some Problems in Catholicism Chapter 31 The Convert's Progress Part 32 Chapter 6 The Coming of the Nightmare Chapter 33 Years of Apprenticeship Chapter 34 Democracy and "Anschlusz" Chapter 35 A Summer Term in Freiburg Chapter 36 Philosophy and Politics Chapter 37 The Gathering Storm Chapter 38 Socialist and Catholic Rightists in Austria Chapter 39 "Religious Socialists" and "Christian Democrats" Part 40 Chapter 7 The Promised Land Chapter 41 The Turn of Life Chapter 42 The West Invaded Chapter 43 The Setting Sun Chapter 44 The City of Lords Chapter 45 The Suicide of Pacifism Part 46 Chapter 8 Intermezzo Chapter 47 The Escape Part 48 Chapter 9 Civitas Hominis Chapter 49 The "Choice for Freedom's Brotherhood" Chapter 50 My American Life Chapter 51 The Kingdom for the Common Man Chapter 52 American Catholicism Part 53 Chapter 10 The Realms of the Boreal Pole Chapter 54 The Enemy Comes into His Own Chapter 55 Homeward Exile Chapter 56 "In the Frozen Sweat of Thy Brow" Chapter 57 Canadian Twilight Chapter 58 Persons and Incidents Chapter 59 A Journey of Ghosts Chapter 60 Endnotes Part 61 Appendix Chapter 62 "Physical Premonition" Versus Human Responsibility and Divine Judgement Chapter 63 The "Official" Status of Thomism and the Problem of Christian Philosophy Chapter 64 "Integralism", Opportunism and Modernism Chapter 65 Indexshow more