The Native Tourist
reformed/biblical observations on Christianity and culture

Wednesday, October 29, 2003
More on Charles Murry's Human Accomplishment book
from the Wall Street Journal

"There is something to this view of the arts, even if Mr. Murray's indictment is too crude and categorical. But more is at work, I suspect, than a loss of metaphysical certitude. When Mr. Murray invokes the "Aristotelian principle" as the measure of artistic greatness--the notion that the highest human pleasures derive from appreciating complexity and refinement--he stands in the tradition of aristocracy and aristocratic connoisseurship. Modern democracy can accommodate such tastes, but it saves its laurels for creations that are energetic, accessible, even vulgar. Surveying today's pop culture, Mr. Murray recognizes that "The Simpsons is wickedly smart." It's more than that, though--it's art for our age."