“We are a Baroque society”

24

February
2011

Thomas S. Harrington forms a connection between Early Modern Iberia and today’s political atmosphere, drawing some interesting conclusions in the process.

Ours is a society in which the crafty and articulate temporizer has much more social cache than the speaker of plain truths. We call the first thoughtful, reasonable and well-balanced. The second is inevitably described as rash, negative or unrealistic, even when his or her grasp of observables is clearly more detailed and historically-informed than that of the former.

In short, the first asks us to do what we have been trained to do as imperial subjects: comment on the beauty of today’s sunlight filtering through the airborne specks of water. The second, uncharismatic sort that he is, simply asks us to consider how much more green and fertile the garden might be in the future if it were to receive its full allotment of water.

Read more: American Baroque (Tehran Times)

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