By Lee Patterson
This quantity brings jointly Lee Patterson’s essays released in quite a few venues during the last twenty-seven years. As he observes in his preface, “The one continual attractiveness that emerged from writing those in a different way relatively disparate essays is that regardless of the textual content . . . and whoever the folks . . ., the values at factor stay significant to modern life.” dialectics are at paintings during this publication: that among the previous and the current and that among the person and the social, and either have ethical importance. the 1st chapters are methodological; the 1st is at the old figuring out of medieval literature and the second one on tips on how to deal with the inseparability of truth and cost within the lecture room. the subsequent 3 chapters soak up 3 “less-read” overdue medieval writers: Sir John Clanvowe, Thomas Hoccleve, and John Lydgate. every one is used to light up a social phenomenon: the character of courtroom tradition, the event of town, and Henry V’s act of self-making. the subsequent bankruptcy explicitly hyperlinks previous and current by means of arguing that the bearing of the English aristocrat comes from a convention starting with Beowulf and later reinvoked based on nineteenth-century imperialism. the subsequent 3 chapters are the main literary, facing Chaucer and with literary conventions in terms of a couple of texts. the ultimate bankruptcy is at the guy Patterson considers some of the most vital of our medieval ancestors, Francis of Assisi.
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Extra info for Acts of Recognition: Essays on Medieval Culture
155). In a larger sense, however, The Disenchanted Classroom 45 Weber’s program is motivated by a limited but genuine idealism. If in a disenchanted world all activities are subordinated to pragmatic ends, then scholarship offers a space of resistance: because of its wertfrei character it can escape from the iron cage of pragmatic rationality and pursue the goal of a knowledge that is valuable in and of itself. 35 But his analysis of the cultural context of modernity within which we live and work, and the kind of lives and work that are therefore both possible and valuable within that world, claims our attention for a number of reasons.
These are terms whose relevance to the vocation of teaching I wish to explore at some length. The ethic of commitment is a response to what Weber calls “the ethical irrationality of the world,” the fact that the conflict of values cannot be resolved by empirical means. Unwilling to accept disenchantment, some inspire themselves with “the flame of pure intentions”;20 they seek to “break out of the disenchanted world . . ”21 In the context of pedagogy, the ethic of commitment tempts the teacher to become a preacher or prophet, an “impresario” (p.
P. 80) This notion of vocation, a definition of “labour as an end in itself,” was essential to the development of the morality required by capitalism: “The ability of mental concentration, as well as the absolutely essential feeling of obligation to one’s job, are here most often combined with a strict economy which calculates the possibility of high earnings, and a cool self-control and frugality which enormously increase productivity” (p. 63). The notion of vocation in the Calvinist scheme of salvation provided the model from which other notions of vocation developed, not least those that now hold sway in the professions of law, medicine, science, and in the academy.
Acts of Recognition: Essays on Medieval Culture by Lee Patterson