Editorials

Why Another Magazine of Ideas?

Leopold Tyrmand founded Chronicles in 1977 to provide a conservative and "value-oriented criticism" of arts and letters, morals and manners. From the very first, Tyrmand's Chronicles exposed the pretentions of the radical chic culture and subjected the permissive, "anything goes" world view of liberalism to an eloquent and withering scorn. Under his editorship, the magazine published such distinguished writers and scholars as Robert Nisbet, Jorge Borges, James Burnham, and Lev Navrozov, as well as provided an opportunity for younger journalists and writers to grapple with serious ideas. This great work of Tyrmand's may turn out to be his most enduring legacy, and all the efforts of his successors will be directed to realizing the dreams he had for the magazine.

The dream is to articulate a positive vision of American culture. This means we are aiming at more than a critique of intellectual fashions. It will be our duty to reform as well as criticize, construct as well as attack. But truth is an elusive phe nomenon which, as Plato realized, was more likely to emerge from a spirited discussion than from a doctrinaire sermon.

Revolutions do not begin with the masses or even with leaders of political movements. Every important revolution of modern times was hatched in intellectual discussions a full generation before a shot was fired. The Russian Revolution of 1917 would have been impossible...

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