Allan Bloom

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Allan Bloom
Western Philosophy
20th-century philosophy
Full name Allan Bloom
School/tradition Continental Philosophy, Platonism
Main interests Eros, Greek philosophy, History of philosophy, Political philosophy, Renaissance philosophy, Nihilism, Continental philosophy, French Literature, Shakespeare
Notable ideas Sublimination, Great Books, Socratic Irony

Allan David Bloom (14 September 1930 in Indianapolis, Indiana – 7 October 1992 in Chicago, Illinois) was an American philosopher, classicist, essayist and academic. He studied under David Grene, Leo Strauss and Alexandre Kojève. He subsequently taught at Cornell University, Yale University, École Normale Supérieure, and the University of Chicago. Bloom championed the idea of 'Great Books' education. Bloom became famous for his criticism of contemporary American higher education, with his views being expressed in his bestselling 1987 book, The Closing of the American Mind.[1] Although he was, in the popular media, initially categorised as a conservative, Bloom, in the wake of his literary stardom, explicitly stated that this was a complete misunderstanding, and made it clear that he was not a conservative.[2]

In 2000, years after Bloom's death, the Nobel laureate, Saul Bellow, Bloom's friend and teaching partner at the University of Chicago, wrote a novel based on his colleague titled Ravelstein. Controversy exists over Bloom’s sexual orientation and cause of death[3] [4], as the Ravelstein character in Bellow’s novel is homosexual and dies of AIDS. Bloom’s official cause of death was liver failure.[5] Recollecting his friend in an interview, Bellow said "People only want the factual truth. Well, the truth is that Allan was a very superior person, great-souled. When critics proclaim the death of the novel, I sometimes think they are really saying that there are no significant people to write about." But "Allan certainly was one."[6]


[edit] Early life and education

Allan Bloom

Allan Bloom was born in Indianapolis to Jewish social worker parents. He had one older sister named Lucille (b. 1928). As a thirteen year old, he read a Readers Digest article about the University of Chicago and told his parents he wanted to attend; his parents thought it was unreasonable and did not encourage his hopes.[7] Yet later, when his family moved to Chicago in 1944, his parents met a psychiatrist and family friend whose son was enrolled in the University of Chicago’s humanities program for gifted students. In 1946 Bloom was accepted to the same program, at the age of fifteen, and spent the next decade of his life enrolled at the university in Chicago’s Hyde Park neighborhood.[7] This began his life-long passion for the 'idea' of the university.[8]

Bloom's tutor: Alexandre Kojève

In the preface to Giants and Dwarfs: Essays, 1960-1990, he stated that his education "began with Freud and ended with Plato." The theme of this education was self-knowledge, or self-discovery -- an idea that Bloom would later write seemed impossible to conceive of for a Midwestern American boy. He credits Leo Strauss as the teacher who made this endeavor possible for him.[9]

After earning his bachelor’s degree he enrolled in the Committee on Social Thought, where he was assigned Classicist David Grene as tutor. Grene recalled Bloom as an energetic and humorous student completely dedicated to reading the classics, but with no definite career ambitions.[7] The Committee was a unique interdisciplinary program that attracted a small number of students due to its rigorous academic requirements and lack of clear employment opportunities after graduation.[7] Bloom earned his Ph.D. from the Committee on Social Thought in 1955. He subsequently studied under the influential Hegelian-Marxist philosopher Alexandre Kojève in Paris, whose lectures he would later introduce to the English-speaking world..[10] While teaching philosophy at the École Normale Supérieure in Paris, he befriended Raymond Aron, amongst other philosophers.

[edit] Career

Bloom studied and taught in Paris (1953-55) at the École Normale Supérieure, [11] and Germany (1957). Upon returning to the United States he taught adult education students at the University of Chicago with his friend Werner J. Dannhauser, author of Nietzsche's View of Socrates. Bloom later taught at Yale, Cornell, Tel Aviv University and the University of Toronto, before returning to the University of Chicago.

In 1963, as a Professor at Cornell, Allan Bloom served as a faculty member of the Telluride Association. The organization aims to foster an everyday synthesis of self-governance and intellectual inquiry that enables students to develop their potential for leadership and public service. The students, who at one time included Paul Wolfowitz, received free room and board in the Telluride House on the Cornell University campus and ran the house themselves, hiring staff, supervising maintenance and organizing seminars. Bloom's first book was a collection of three essays on Shakespeare's plays, Shakespeare's Politics; it included an essay from Harry V. Jaffa. He translated and commented upon Rousseau's "Letter to D'Alembert On the Theater," bringing it into dialogue with Plato's Republic. In 1968, he published his most significant work of philosophical translation and interpretation, a translation of Plato's Republic. Bloom strove to achieve "the first translation of Plato's Republic that attempts to be strictly literal.[12]" Although the translation is not universally accepted, Bloom said he always conceptualized the translator's role as a matchmaker between readers and the texts he translated.[13] He repeated this effort while a Professor at the University of Toronto in 1978, translating Jean-Jacques Rousseau's Emile. Among other publications during his years of teaching was a reading of Swift's Gulliver's Travels, entitled "Giants and Dwarfs"; it became the title for a collection of essays on, among others, Raymond Aron, Alexandre Kojeve, Leo Strauss, and John Rawls. Bloom was an editor for the scholarly journal Political Theory as well as a contributor to History of Political Philosophy (edited by Joseph Cropsey and Leo Strauss).

After returning to Chicago, he befriended and taught courses with Saul Bellow. Bellow wrote the Preface to The Closing of the American Mind in 1987, the book that made Bloom famous and wealthy. Bellow later immortalized his dead friend in the novel Ravelstein. Bloom's last book, which he dictated while in hospital, and which was published posthumously, was Love and Friendship, where he offered interpretations on the meaning of love in novels by Stendhal, Jane Austen, Flaubert, and Tolstoy in light of Rousseau's influence on the Romantic movement, of plays by William Shakespeare, of Montaigne's Essays, and finally of Plato's Symposium.

[edit] Philosophy

Bloom's work is not easily defined, yet there is a thread that links all of his published material. Allan Bloom was a philosopher and he was primarily concerned with preserving the philosophical way of life for the future generation. He strove to do this through both scholarly and popular writing. Accordingly, his writings fall into two basic categories: scholarly (e.g. Plato's Republic) and popular political comment (e.g. Closing of the American Mind). On the surface, this is a valid distinction, yet closer examinations of Bloom’s works reveal a direct connection between the two types of expression, which reflect his view of philosophy and the role of the philosopher in political life.

Bloom was a chain-smoker of Marlboro Reds, maintaining a habit of 65 a day at times.

[edit] Plato's Republic

Bloom’s translation and interpretive essay on Plato’s Republic was published in 1968. For Bloom, previous translations were lacking. In particular, Bloom was eager to sweep away the Christian Platonist layers that had coated the translations and scholarly analysis. In 1971, he wrote, "With the Republic, for example, a long tradition of philosophy tells us what the issues are. [...] This sense of familiarity may be spurious; we may be reading the text as seen by the tradition rather than raising Plato's own questions.[14]

Up until the late 20th century, most English language Platonists were following a tradition that blended Christian theology with Plato. This view, named Christian Platonism, interprets Plato as prophet of the coming Christian age, a monotheist in a polytheist world. In this school, Socrates is considered a pre-Christian saint; the tradition emphasizes Socrates' 'goodness' and other-worldly attributes, such as accepting his death like a martyr. In the words of George Grant, "Straussians say that Christianity led to overextension of soul."[15]

Yet there developed a different type of Platonism, Pagan Platonism, a type of which Bloom became aware and most certainly adopted from his teacher Leo Strauss (1899-1973), the most important representative of this thought in the past century.[16] Adherents have a significantly different view of Plato’s Republic.

Strauss developed this point of view by studying ancient Islamic and Jewish theorists, such as Al-Farabi (870-950) and Moses Maimonides (1135-1204). Each philosopher was faithful to his religion but sought to integrate classical political philosophy into Islam and Judaism. Islam has a prophet-legislator Muhammad and similarly, Jewish law is a function of its theology. Thus these philosophers had to write with great skill, incorporating the ideas of Plato and Aristotle, many of which contradicted or contravened Islamic or Jewish thought and practice, without being seen to challenge the theology. According to Strauss, Al-Farabi and Moses Maimonides were really writing for potential philosophers within the pious faithful. Strauss calls this the discovery of esoteric writing, and he first presents it as a possibility in Persecution and the Art of Writing (1952). Christianity differed from these faiths in that philosophy was always free to establish a foothold in Christendom, without necessarily being seen as heretical. All one has to do is think of Saint Augustine (354-430) and his City of God and On Free Will.

Strauss took this insight and applied it eventually to Plato’s writings themselves. Bloom's translation and essay of the Republic takes this stance; therefore, it is radically different in many important aspects from the previous translations and interpretations of the Republic. Most notable is Bloom's discussion of Socratic irony. In fact, irony is the key to Bloom’s take on the Republic. (See his discussion of Books II-VI of the Republic.) Allan Bloom says a philosopher is immune to irony because he can see the tragic as comic and comic as tragic. Bloom refers to Socrates, the philosopher par excellence, in his Interpretative Essay stating, "Socrates can go naked where others go clothed; he is not afraid of ridicule. He can also contemplate sexual intercourse where others are stricken with terror; he is not afraid of moral indignation. In other words he treats the comic seriously and the tragic lightly.[17] Thus irony in the Republic refers to the 'Just City in Speech' Bloom looks at it not as a model for future society, nor as a template for the human soul; rather, it is an ironic city, an example of the distance between philosophy and every potential philosopher. Bloom follows Strauss in suggesting that the 'Just City in Speech' is not natural; it is man-made, and thus ironic.

[edit] Closing of the American Mind

Closing of the American Mind was published in 1987, five years after Bloom published an essay in The National Review about the failure of universities to serve the needs of students. With the encouragement of Saul Bellow, his colleague at the University of Chicago, he expanded his thoughts into a book "about a life, I've led"[7] that critically reflected on the current state of higher education in American universities. His friends and admirers imagined the work would be a modest success, as did Bloom, who recognized his publisher’s modest advance to complete the project as a lack of sales confidence. Yet on the momentum of strong initial reviews, including one by Christopher Lehmann-Haupt in the New York Times and an op-ed piece by syndicated conservative commentator George Will entitled "A How-To Book for the Independent" [18] it became an unexpected best seller, eventually selling close to half a million copies in hardback and remaining at number one on the New York Times Non-fiction Best Seller list for four months.[19]

Allan Bloom's Closing of the American Mind.

Bloom's Closing of the American Mind is a critique of the contemporary university and how Bloom sees it as failing its students. In it, Bloom criticizes analytic philosophy as a movement, "Professors of these schools simply would not and could not talk about anything important, and they themselves do not represent a philosophic life for the students." To a great extent, Bloom's criticism revolves around his belief that the Great Books of Western Thought have been devalued as a source of wisdom. Bloom's critique extends beyond the university to speak to the general crisis in American society. "Closing of the American Mind" draws analogies between the United States and the Weimar Republic. The modern liberal philosophy, he says, enshrined in the Enlightenment thought of John Locke - that a just society could be based upon self-interest alone, coupled by the emergence of relativism in American thought - had led to this crisis.

For Bloom, this created a void in the souls of Americans, into which demagogic radicals as exemplified by 60's student leaders could leap. (In the same fashion, Bloom suggests, that the Nazi brownshirts once filled the lacuna created in German society by the Weimar Republic.) In the second instance, the higher calling of philosophy and reason understood as freedom of thought, had been eclipsed by a pseudo-philosophy, or an ideology of thought. Relativism was one feature of modern liberal philosophy that had subverted the Platonic–Socratic teaching. The Great Books of Western Thought simply became the ramblings of dead white men rather than beacons leading to the highest calling.

The power behind Bloom's critique of contemporary social movements at play in universities or society at large is derived from his philosophical orientation. The failure of contemporary liberal education leads to the social and sexual habits of modern students, and their inability to fashion a life for themselves beyond the mundane offerings touted as success. Bloom argues that commercial pursuits had become more highly valued than the philosophic quest for truth or the civilized pursuits of honor and glory.

In particular, he looked seriously at the effects of popular music on the lives of students, placing pop music, or the generic term "rock music" in a historical context from Plato’s Republic to Nietzsche’s Dionysian longings. Treating it for the first time with genuine philosophical seriousness, he gave fresh attention to the industry, its target-marketing to children and teenagers, its top performers, and its hypocritical pretensions to liberation and freedom. Some critics, including Frank Zappa, claimed that Bloom's view of rock music was based on the same ideas that critics of rock and roll in the 1950s held, ideas about the preservation of "traditional" white American society. [20] Bloom, informed by Socrates, Aristotle, Rousseau and Nietzsche, explores music’s power over the human soul. He cites the soldier who throws himself into battle at the urging of the drum corps, the pious believer who prays under the spell of a religious hymn, the lover seduced by the romantic guitar, and points towards the tradition of philosophy that treated musical education as paramount. He names Mick Jagger as a cardinal representative of the hypocrisy and intellectual sterility of rock. Pop music employs sexual images and language to enthrall the young, and persuade them that their petty rebelliousness is authentic politics, when in fact they are being controlled by the money-managers whom successful performers like Jagger quietly serve. In fact, Bloom claims, Jagger is a hero to many university students who envy his fame and wealth, but are really just bored by the lack of options before them.[21] Along with the absence of literature in the lives of the young, and their fractured erotic relationships, the first part of Closing tries to explain the current state of education in a fashion beyond the purview of an economist or psychiatrist – contemporary culture's leading umpires.

[edit] Critical reception

The book was met with much critical acclaim. The Wall Street Journal proclaimed "No other book is at once so lively and so deep, so witty and so thoughtful, so outrageous and so sensible, so amusing and so chilling."[22] The Los Angeles Times Book Review called it "Elegant, passionate, wide-ranging...compelling."[22] The New York Times called it "Remarkable!...Hits with the approximate force of...electric shock therapy."[22] Insight believed it to be "The most provocative look at America in recent memory...Powerful and inspiring."[22] And Saul Bellow lauded it as "A completely articulated, historically accurate summary, a trustworthy resume of the development of the higher mental life in the democratic U.S.A."[22]

The success of the work attracted a wide spectrum of critics; some of the reviewers made interesting bedfellows. Martha Nussbaum, a liberal political philosopher and classicist, and Harry V. Jaffa, a conservative, both argued that Bloom was deeply influenced by 19th-century European philosophers, especially Friedrich Nietzsche. Nussbaum wrote that, for Bloom, Nietzsche had been disastrously influential in modern American thought.[23] Jaffa went so far as to point out the lack of attention Bloom paid to the moral role gay rights were playing in the lives of current students.[24] According to Jaffa, while Bloom discusses contemporary social movements, particularly those that gained ascendancy in the 1960s, he is virtually silent on the gay rights movement.[24]

In a passage from her negative review, which propelled her into the public eye, Nussbaum wrote: "How good a philosopher, then, is Allan Bloom? The answer is, we cannot say, and we are given no reason to think him one at all."[23] The outraged "assault" on the book was continued by negative and impassioned reviews by Benjamin Barber in Harper's; by Alexander Nehamas in The London Review of Books; and by David Rieff in The Times Literary Supplement.[25] David Rieff, indeed, called Bloom "an academic version of Oliver North: vengeful, reactionary, antidemocratic." The book, he said, was one that "decent people would be ashamed of having written." The tone of these reviews led James Atlas in the New York Times Magazine to conclude "the responses to Bloom's book have been charged with a hostility that transcends the usual mean-spiritedness of reviewers."[7] One reviewer, the philosopher Robert Paul Wolff writing in the scholarly journal Academe, reviewed the book as a work of fiction: he claimed that Bloom's friend Saul Bellow, who had written the introduction, had written a "coruscatingly funny novel in the form of a pettish, bookish, grumpy, reactionary complaint against the last two decades", using as the narrator a "mid-fiftyish professor at the University of Chicago, to whom Bellow gives the evocative name 'Bloom.'"[25] Yet some reviewers tempered that criticism with an admission of the merits of Bloom's writing: for example, Fred Matthews, a historian from York University, began an otherwise relatively critical review in the American Historical Review with the statement that Bloom's "probes into popular culture" were "both amusing and perceptive" and that the work was "a rich, often brilliant, and disturbing book".[26]

Some critics embraced Bloom's argument. Thus Norman Podhoretz in his review noted that the closed-mindedness in the title refers to the paradoxical consequence of the academic "open mind" found in liberal political thought – namely "the narrow and intolerant dogmatism" that dismisses any attempt, by Plato or the Hebrew Bible for example, to provide a rational basis for moral judgments. Podhoretz continued, "Bloom goes on to charge liberalism with vulgarizing the noble ideals of freedom and equality, and he offers brilliantly acerbic descriptions of the sexual revolution and the feminist movement, which he sees as products of this process of vulgarization."[27]

In a 1989 article (The German Quarterly, Vol. 62, No. 3, Focus: Literature since 1945 (Summer, 1989)), Ann Clark Fehn discusses the critical reception of the book, noting that it had eclipsed other titles that year dealing with higher education (College, by Ernest Boyer, and Cultural Literacy, by E. D. Hirsch), and quoting Publisher's Weekly, which had described Bloom's book as a "best-seller made by reviews."

Camille Paglia, a decade after the book's release, called it "the first shot in the culture wars." [28] The linguist Noam Chomsky referred to 'The Closing of the American Mind' as "mind-bogglingly stupid."[29] On the other hand, a The New York Times review by Roger Kimball called the book "an unparalleled reflection on the whole question of what it means to be a student in today's intellectual and moral climate."[30] Bloom's book has recently been given extremely positive critical re-assessments, within the New York Times amongst other publications.[31] Writing of it in The New Republic, in 2000, Andrew Sullivan wrote that "reading [Bloom]... one feels he has not merely understood Nietzsche; he has imbibed him. But this awareness of the abyss moved Bloom, unlike Nietzsche, toward love and political conservatism. Love, whether for the truth or for another, because it can raise us out of the abyss. Political conservatism because it best restrains the chaos that modernity threatens."[32]

[edit] Quotes

  • "As it now stands, students have powerful images of what a perfect body is and pursue it incessantly. But deprived of literary guidance, they no longer have any image of a perfect soul, and hence do not long to have one. They do not even imagine that there is such a thing." (Closing of the American Mind, 67)
  • "The substance of my being has been informed by the books I learned to care for." (Closing of the American Mind, 245)
  • "Education is the movement from darkness to light." (Closing of the American Mind, 265)
  • "The most successful tyranny is not the one that uses force to assure uniformity but the one that removes the awareness of other possibilities, that makes it seem inconceivable that other ways are viable, that removes the sense that there is an outside." (Closing of the American Mind, 249)
  • "Law may prescribe that the male nipples be made equal to the female ones, but they still will not give milk." (Closing of the American Mind, 131)
  • "There is one thing a professor can be absolutely sure of; almost every student entering the university believes, or says he believes, that truth is relative. If this belief is put to the test, one can count on the student's reaction: they will be uncomprehending." (Closing of the American Mind, 25 (Opening Sentence))
  • "Music is the medium of the human soul in its most ecstatic condition of wonder and terror. Nietzsche, who in large measure agrees with Plato's analysis, says...that a mixture of cruelty and coarse sensuality characterized this state... Music is the soul's primitive and primary speech... without articulate speech or reason. It is not only not reasonable, it is hostile to reason." (Closing of the American Mind, 72)
  • "Rock music has one appeal only, a barbaric appeal, to sexual desire- not love, not eros, but sexual desire undeveloped and untutored." (Closing of the American Mind, 73)
  • 'The relativity of truth is not a theoretical insight but a moral postulate, the condition of a free society, or so [the students] see it. They have all been equipped with this framework early on, and it is the modern replacement for the inalienable natural rights that used to be the traditional American grounds for a free society. That it is a moral issue for students is revealed by the character of their response when challenged -- a combination of disbelief and indignation: "Are you an absolutist?," the only alternative they know, uttered in the same tone as "Are you a monarchist?" or "Do you really believe in witches?"' (Closing of the American Mind, 25)
  • "Indignation is the soul's defense against the wound of doubt about its own; it reorders the cosmos to support the justice of its cause. It justifies putting Socrates to death. Recognizing indignation for what it is constitutes knowledge of the soul, and is thus an experience more philosophic than the study of mathematics." (Closing of the American Mind, 71)
  • "Men may live more truly and fully in reading Plato and Shakespeare than at any other time, because then they are participating in essential being and are forgetting their accidental lives." (Closing of the American Mind, 380)

[edit] Bibliography (of Published texts)

  • Bloom, Allan. 2000. Shakespeare on Love & Friendship. Chicago: University Of Chicago Press.
  • Bloom, Allan. 1993. Love and Friendship. New York: Simon & Schuster.
  • Bloom, Allan. 1991. Giants and Dwarfs: Essays, 1960-1990. New York: Touchstone Books.
  • Bloom, Allan. 1987. Closing of the American Mind. New York: Simon & Schuster. ISBN 5-551-86868-0.
  • Bloom, Allan. 1968 (2nd ed 1991). Republic of Plato. (translated with notes and an interpretive essay). New York: Basic Books.
  • Bloom, Allan, Charles Butterworth, Christopher Kelly (Edited and translated), and Jean-Jacques Rousseau. 1968. Letter to d’Alembert on the theater in politics and the arts. Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press; Agora ed.
  • Bloom, Allan, and Harry V. Jaffa. 1964. Shakespeare's Politics. New York: Basic Books.
  • Bloom, Allan, and Steven J. Kautz ed. 1991. Confronting the Constitution: The challenge to Locke, Montesquieu, Jefferson, and the Federalists from Utilitarianism, Historicism, Marxism, Freudism. Washington, DC: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research.
  • Bloom, Allan, and Jean-Jacques Rousseau. 1979. Emile (translator) with introduction. New York: Basic Books.
  • Plato, Seth Benardete, and Allan Bloom. 2001. Plato's Symposium: A translation by Seth Benardete with commentaries by Allan Bloom and Seth Benardete. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

[edit] Bibliography on Allan Bloom

  • Atlas, James. “Chicago’s Grumpy Guru: Best-Selling Professor Allan Bloom and the Chicago Intellectuals.” New York Times Magazine. 3 January 1988.
  • "The Constitution in Full Bloom". 1990. Harvard Law Review 104, no. 2 (Dec90): 645.
  • Bayles, Martha. 1998. "Body and soul: the musical miseducation of youth." Public Interest, no. 131, Spring 98: 36.
  • Beckerman, Michael. 2000. "Ravelstein Knows Everything, Almost". New York Times (28 May 2000) .
  • Bellow, Adam. 2005. "Opening the American Mind". National Review 57, no. 23 (12/19/2005) : 102.
  • Bellow, Saul. 2000. Ravelstein. New York, New York: Penguin.
  • Butterworth, Charles E., "On Misunderstanding Allan Bloom: The Response to The Closing of the American Mind." Academic Questions 2, no. 4: 56.
  • Edington, Robert V. 1990. "Allan Bloom's message to the state universities". Perspectives on Political Science; 19, no. 3
  • Fulford, Robert. "Saul Bellow, Allan Bloom, and Abe Ravelstein." Globe and Mail, 2 November 1999.
  • Goldstein, William. “The Story behind the Best Seller: Allan Bloom’s Closing of the American Mind.” Publishers Weekly. 3 July 1987.
  • Hook, Sidney. 1989. "Closing of the American Mind: An Intellectual Best Seller Revisited". American Scholar 58, no. Winter: 123.
  • Iannone, Carol. 2003. "What's Happened to Liberal Education?". Academic Questions 17, no. 1, 54.
  • Jaffa, Harry V. "Humanizing Certitudes and Impoverishing Doubts: A Critique of Closing of the American Mind." Interpretation. 16 Fall 1988.
  • Kahan, Jeffrey. 2002. "Shakespeare on Love and Friendship." Women's Studies 31, no. 4, 529.
  • Kinzel, Till. 2002. Platonische Kulturkritik in Amerika. Studien zu Allan Blooms The Closing of the American Mind. Berlin: Duncker & Humblot.
  • Matthews, Fred. "The Attack on 'Historicism': Allan Bloom's Indictment of Contemporary American Historical Scholarship." American Historical Review 95, no. 2, 429.
  • Mulcahy, Kevin V. 1989. "Civic Illiteracy and the American Cultural Heritage." Journal of Politics 51, no. 1, 177.
  • Nussbaum, Martha. "Undemocratic Vistas," New York Review of Books 34, no.17 (5 November 1987)
  • Orwin, Clifford. "Remembering Allan Bloom." American Scholar 62, no. 3, 423.
  • Palmer, Michael, and Thomas Pangle ed. 1995. Political Philosophy and the Human Soul: Essays in Memory of Allan Bloom. Lanham, Maryland, U.S.A.: Rowman & Littlefield Pub.
  • Rosenberg, Aubrey. 1981. "Translating Rousseau." University of Toronto Quarterly 50, no. 3, 339.
  • Schaub, Diana. 1994. "Erotic adventures of the mind." Public Interest, no. 114, 104.
  • Slater, Robert O. (2005) Allan Bloom. In John Shook (Ed.) The Dictionary of Modern American Philosophers. (Vol 1) Bristol, England: Thoemmes Press.
  • Sleeper, Jim. 2005. "Allan Bloom and the Conservative Mind". New York Times Book Review (4 September 2005) : 27.
  • Wrightson, Katherine M. 1998. "The Professor as Teacher: Allan Bloom, Wayne Booth, and the Tradition of Teaching at the University of Chicago." Innovative Higher Education 23, no. 2, 103.

[edit] Notes

  1. ^ Hitchens, Christopher (2002). Unacknowledged Legislation: Writers in the Public Sphere. Verso. pp. 226. 
  2. ^ Bloom, Allan (1991). Giants and Dwarfs : Essays 1960-1990. Touchstone Books. 
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ The wordly mystic's late bloom James Wood, The Guardian, Saturday 15 April 2000
  7. ^ a b c d e f Atlas, James. “Chicago’s Grumpy Guru: Best-Selling Professor Allan Bloom and the Chicago Intellectuals.” New York Times Magazine. 3 January 1988. 12.
  8. ^ Bloom, Allan. 1987. Closing of the American Mind, p.243. New York: Simon & Schuster
  9. ^ Bloom, Allan. 1991. Giants and Dwarfs: Essays, 1960-1990, p.11. New York: Touchstone Books
  10. ^ Bloom, Allan (1991). Giants and Dwarfs : Essays 1960-1990. Touchstone Books. 
  11. ^ Strauss had sent Bloom to Paris without sufficient funding, and when Bloom was broke he sold his books to Ernest Fortin, a young Catholic priest doing graduate studies there. Father Fortin reported that this forced-purchase of Strauss' works was his introduction to Strauss. J. Brian Benestad, ed., Human Rights, Virtue, and the Common Good: Untimely Meditations on Religion and Politics, at 317 (Rowman & Littlefield 1996).
  12. ^ Bloom, Allan. 1968( 2nd ed 1991). Republic of Plato. (translated with notes and an interpretive essay). New York: Basic Books.
  13. ^ Bloom, Allan. 1991. Giants and Dwarfs: Essays, 1960-1990. New York: Touchstone Books
  14. ^ "The Political Philosopher in a Democratic Society," Giants & Dwarfs, 1990, p.106)
  15. ^ George Grant: A Biography. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1993. p. 292.
  16. ^ George Grant: A Biography. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1993. Grant's private correspondence in 1983 states: "I have for quite a while believed that one of the deepest strains in Strauss' writing about Plato has been to criticize the long hold of Christian Platonism in the western and eastern interpretation of Plato. He has done this wisely & with no foolishly polemical spirit" -- p. 293
  17. ^ Bloom, Allan. Republic of Plato, "Interpretative Essay," p.387. New York: Basic Books
  18. ^ [1],
  19. ^ Goldstein, William. “The Story behind the Best Seller: Allan Bloom’s Closing of the American Mind.” Publishers Weekly. 3 July 1987.
  20. ^ Zappa, Frank. "On Junk Food for the Soul." New Perspective's Quarterly. 1987. Available online at: "On Junk Food for the Soul"
  21. ^ Bloom, Allan. “Music” p. 68-81. Closing of the American Mind. New York: Simon & Schuster.
  22. ^ a b c d e Bloom, Allan. "The Closing of the American Mind," (Copyright 1987 Allan Bloom, Simon & Schuster)
  23. ^ a b Nussbaum, Martha. "Undemocratic Vistas," New York Review of Books 34, no.17 (5 November 1987)
  24. ^ a b Jaffa, Harry V. "Humanizing Certitudes and Impoverishing Doubts: A Critique of Closing of the American Mind". Interpretation. 16 Fall 1988.
  25. ^ a b Atlas, James (1988-01-03). "CHICAGO'S GRUMPY GURU". New York Times. Retrieved on 2008-05-08. 
  26. ^ The American Historical Review, Vol. 95, No. 2 (Apr., 1990), pp. 429-447. url: Accessed 16 May 2008)
  27. ^ Podhoretz, Norman. “Conservative Book Becomes a Best-Seller.” Human Events 11 July 1987: 5–6.
  28. ^ Paglia, Camille (1997). "Ask Camille". Retrieved on 2008-05-09. 
  29. ^ Chomsky, Noam. "Understanding Power." Ed. Mitchell, Peter R. and John Schoeffel. New York: The New Press, 2002. pg. 233. Chomsky's complaint stems from his view that education ought to train students to learn how to think for themselves, as opposed to learning what to think and read.
  30. ^ New York Times. Arts. "The Groves of Ignorance". April 5, 1987. url:
  31. ^ Allan Bloom and the Conservative Mind - New York Times
  32. ^ Longing: Remembering Allan Bloom, The New Republic, April 17, 2000.

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