Wednesday, November 09, 2005


* I've already linked to some of it, but for those who are interested in forgeries and hoaxes, conceptual analysis of concepts like 'forgery' and 'hoax', and distinctions among various cases of deception and misattribution, the discussion of literary fakes (and what they should be called) among bibliobloggers is worth reading. Stephen Carlson is keeping track of some of the discussion in his original response to Loren Rosson, III's originating post. The discussion of McHale's taxonomy at The Busybody is particularly of interest.

* Also worth reading is Elizabeth Cady Stanton's 1848 Declaration of Sentiments, given at the Seneca Falls Convention. (HT: Bitch, PhD)

* Theodore Dalrymple discusses Holmes and His Commentators at "The New Criterion". I'm glad to see that Sayers's speculation about the H got a mention. I must leap to the defense of my namesake, however, and insist that Watson's description of Holmes's background knowledge is a bit of deliberate, but fact-based, hyperbole to make a point.

* A good discussion by Gyula Klima on whether Aquinas is a direct realist or a representationalist (PDF).

* Michelle Arnold reviews Anne Rice's Christ the Lord at ""; she gives it a moderate thumbs-up, particularly given that it was a hard place to start. The comments are interesting in that many of the commenters are not properly distinguishing human and divine abilities (they should go back and re-read the Tome of Leo). I think there's also something of a misunderstanding about what is involved in beatific vision. In the beatific vision God is known directly and temporal things are known in God. As Aquinas says, it does not follow that all temporal things are known in God; and, as Aquinas also notes, it certainly does not follow that Christ had no acquired knowledge. (Incidentally, the second Aquinas link is one of the small handful of passages where Aquinas explicitly reverses something he had already written.) Christ has two abilities to know, one being the divine essence and the other being his human intellect; the rules for each are different. The former is omniscient, the latter is not; to use a crude analogy, the one exceeds the other as much as our ability to think of things exceeds our ability to imagine them visually. The latter runs up against sharp natural limits, and has more need to be trained (in one way or another) to know whatever it knows. Moreover, the latter has closer connections with our physical existence, in the sense that it is more closely related to our bodily actions. And all these things are independent of what we can know by the former ability. So it is (mutatis mutandis) with the God-Man.

UPDATE: Pseudo-Polymath is reading Augustine's City of God, and has started a series of posts on it: Book 1, Essay 1; and Book 1 and Suicide are the posts currently up. (HT: Parableman, who discusses Augustine on rape)

* The second edition of the God or Not Carnival, with the theme of proof and its role in theism and atheism, is up at Eternal Revolution. It looks like this will be a thriving carnival; they had plenty of submissions, they have an abundance of hosts, and there's a widespread interest in it.

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