Allan David Bloom Quotes

Reason transformed into prejudice is the worst form of prejudice, because reason is the only instrument for liberation from prejudice.

Allan David Bloom

The essence of philosophy is the abandonment of all authority in favor of individual human reason.

Allan David Bloom

Reason is only one part of the souls economy and requires a balance of the other parts in order to function properly.

Allan David Bloom

Aristocracies hate and fear demagogues most of all, while democracies in their pure form hate and fear elitists most of all, because they are unjust, i.e., they do not accept the leading principle of justice in those regimes. Hence each regime discounts those who are most likely to recognize and compensate for its political and intellectual propensities, while it admires those who encourage them.

Allan David Bloom

Flattery of the people and incapacity to resist public opinion are the democratic vices, particularly among writers, artists, journalists and anyone else who is dependent on an audience.

Allan David Bloom

Modernity promised that all human beings would be treated equally. Women took that promise seriously and rebelled against the old order. Women, now liberated and with equal careers, nevertheless find they still desire to have children, but have no basis for claiming that men should assume a responsibility for them. So nature weighs more heavily on women. In the old order they were subordinated and dependent on men; in the new order they are isolated, needing men, but not able to count on them.

Allan David Bloom

In the tightest communities, at least since the days of Odysseus, there is something in man that wants out and senses that his development is stunted by being just a part of a whole, rather than a whole itself. And in the freest and most independent situations men long for unconditional attachments. The tension between freedom and attachment, and attempts to achieve the impossible union of the two, are the permanent condition of man.

Allan David Bloom

Education is not sermonizing to children against their instincts and pleasures, but providing a natural continuity between what they feel and what they can and should be.

Allan David Bloom

Mick Jagger played the role in their [students] lives that Napoleon played in the lives of ordinary young Frenchmen throughout the nineteenth century. Everyone else was so boring and unable to charm youthful passions.

Allan David Bloom

Rock and the intellectual Left must both be interpreted as parts of the cultural fabric of late capitalism. Their success comes from the bourgeois need to feel that he is not bourgeois, to have undangerous experiments with the unlimited. The critical theory of late capitalism is at once late capitalisms subtlest and crudest expression. Anti-bourgeois ire is the opiate of the Last Man.

Allan David Bloom

The family spiritual void has left the field open to rock music. The result is nothing less than parents loss of control over their childrens moral education at a time when no one else is seriously concerned with it.

Allan David Bloom

Nothing noble, sublime, profound, delicate, tasteful or even decent can find a place in such tableaux [as Rock music]. There is room only for the intense, changing, crude and immediate, which Tocqueville warned us would be the character of democratic art.

Allan David Bloom

Civilization or, to say the same thing, education is the taming or domestication of the souls raw passionsnot suppressing or excising them, which would deprive the soul of its energybut forming and informing them as art.

Allan David Bloom

The failure to read good books both enfeebles the vision and strengthens our most fatal tendencythe belief that the here and now is all there is.

Allan David Bloom

The distance from the contemporary and its high seriousness that students most need in order not to indulge their petty desires and to discover what is most serious about themselves cannot be found in the cinema, which now only knows the present.

Allan David Bloom

Socratic dialectic takes place in speech and, although drawn forward by the search for synthesis, always culminates in doubt. ... Marxs dialectic takes place in deed and puts an end to theoretical conflicts.

Allan David Bloom

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