Great Books -- by David Denby
The Know-It-All -- by A.J. Jacobs
The New Lifetime Reading Plan -- by Clifton Fadiman & John S. Major
The Well Educated Mind -- by S. Wise Bauer & Susan Wise Bauer.
As for the New Atlantis, Bacon's unfinished vision of an ideal future state, it is easily the strangest thing I have read in the Classics so far. Given Bacon's legacy, the editors choose to emphasize the second half of the text, in which, in Eliot's words, we have Bacon the scientist indulging without restriction his prophetic vision of the future of human knowledge. But I was far more interested by the first half, which tells of Bacon's arrival at the unknown island of Bensalem and of the island's history, including its witness of a fiery cross in the sky within a generation of Jesus' death and the elaborate means by which the island has kept itself secret. For purposes of political science, this speculative narrative is completely gratuitous. I couldn't help thinking that Bacon, more than a century before Poe or Wells, had proven himself also the father of modern science fictions.
« Older "The storm carried twice as much dirt as was dug o... | Lessons Learned in Web Publish... Newer »
This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments
Buy a Shirt