‘The Brothers K’ as a Constellation in the Wise Child’s Sky

Go ahead, give your kids telescopes.

Consider what happens to people whose night skies are spangled with constellations like The Master of Hestviken, or Moby-Dick, or The Brothers Karamazov. These people Pevear and Volokhonsky, Pen Awardare hard to fool. They are also hard to enlist in pursuit of the trivial and ephemeral. It is as if we had given them a powerful telescope atop a high mountain, and shown them how to use it, and directed their attention to the Orion nebula, and once they had learned to do so and to love the beauty they found there, expected them to look at light bulbs on a marquee. Or, if not a telescope, a magical device for seeing deep into the human heart; and then expected them to watch American Idol, or to be impressed by the maunderings of the latest political hack.

-Anthony Esolen, Ten Ways to Destroy the Imagination of Your Child, 100

Anthony Esolen, cultural criticism, cover art, ISI book

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