In the course of my education I’ve found that I spend most of my time reading the work of dead or aging authors; I think that the English major may be the only opportunity to read modern works, but this is probably the chief reason for not pursuing an English major in the first place.
In any case, in an effort to jump-start my own writing, I’m posting a speech titled “Is Democracy for Export?” by Jacques Barzun, given at the Carnegie Society dinner in 1981 or thereabouts. Works that are hundreds of years old often carry more pertinence today than they did in their contemporary era (I’ve heard this is the case with Chateaubriand and others). This speech is brilliant in that it is couched in the terminology of the Cold War yet succeeds in transcending the issues of the time to provide some insightful words about American Democracy’s place in the world.
Is Democracy for Export – PDF