This whole attitude of austerity bespoke the high esteem in which he held the subject of the science of society; he regarded it as of an importance so great as not to admit of any treatment save the most careful and conscientious. The result was that his utterances in the classroom were marked by a seriousness, almost a severity, which was relieved only by the recurrent play of a grim humor and a picturesque and stinging satire. He brought to these lectures, as I have said above, a manner, matter, and method to which we had never been introduced. The manner was authoritative and compelling, and was never tainted by the slightest sensationalism, whatever distortions of his sayings may have reached the press; and it was marked by a most delicate propriety of expression, for this powerful man had, as respects sensitiveness and purity, the mind of a woman. The matter was rich and thought-enkindling. The method was direct and unadorned, the embodiment of the conviction that truth plainly set forth would come to its own. There was no placation of the hearer, no device to hold attention, no oratory. — nothing but the man and the word. And these seemed to be one; before those who knew Sumner and who later read his writing there arises the reminiscence of a broad-shouldered, powerful frame, leaning forward a little from the lecture chair; a head whose baldness and close-clipped fringe of hair seemed, in what they revealed, appropriate; a stern, lined face; a level eye, deep-pouched and redoubtable to meet; a long, bony, upraised forefinger; a “voice of iron,” an enunciation deep, almost harsh in its ruggedness, and with impressive pauses. To this figure of the man the words he spoke seemed entirely congruous; and as one who sat under Sumner reads the essayswhich follow he cannot dispel, if he would, the memory of a commanding personality.
Ironically, the Vietnam revisionistsmounted a belated defense of the American war effort, venting much of their anger at theprevailing liberal orthodoxy, which, they insisted, wrongly considered the Indochina warto be unwinnable oreven more egregious from their perspectiveimmoral.
Nuclear War and Christian Responsibility | …
The position of women amongst the Jews at the time of Christ was what it was generally in the Greco-Roman world; their place was domestic and their chief function was to bear children. The New Testament Gospels contain very little about women, but later Christian hagiology created myths about the two Marys and Martha to satisfy the demand. The Epistles contain doctrines of marriage which are not fully consistent. One view is that marriage is a for sin. The most important question is that of the effect on a preexistingmarriage of conversion of husband or wife to Christianity. The rabbis held the current contemptuous opinion of women; Hillet is quoted as saying, “More women, more witchcrafts.” Woman, according to the current belief, was not saved through the Law, but through child-bearing. Philo gives as the reason why the Essenes did not marry that “a wife is a selfish creature, immoderately smitten with jealousy, terrible at shaking to their foundations the natural habits of a man, and bringing him under power by continual beguilements. For as she practices fair false speeches and other kinds of hypocrisy, as it were upon the stage, when she has succeeded in alluring eyes and ears, like cheated servants, she brings cajolery to bear upon the sovereign mind. Moreover, if there are children she begins to be puffed up with pride and license of tongue, and all the things which before she speciously offered in a disguised manner in irony, she now summons forth with a more daring confidence, and shamelessly forces her way into actions, every one of which is hostile to communion. For the man who is bound under spells of wife or children, being made anxious by the bond of nature, is no longer the same person toward others, but is entirely changed, having become, without being aware of it, a slave instead of a free man.”