The Moral Imagination -  Michael Matheson Miller
The Moral Imagination
Ep. 26: David Deavel Ph.D: What Happiness are We Pursuing? Solzhenitsyn and American Culture
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Ep. 26: David Deavel Ph.D: What Happiness are We Pursuing? Solzhenitsyn and American Culture

A British journalist asked Alexander Solzhenitsyn: can free people desire to be slaves? He answered Yes. The West is "full of such people". In this episode, I speak with David Deavel about the book he co-edited with Jessica Hooten Wilson, "Solzhensityn and American Culture: The Russian soul in the West".

We discuss how some of the key themes of Solzhenitsyn apply to our contemporary life, including a critique of materialism, the attraction to modern stoicism, and how it can become infected with utilitarianism and narcissism. We discuss the affirmation of being and how this relates to suffering and redemption. We discuss Solzhenitsyn's Harvard Address, Templeton Prize Address, and several essays in the book including the role of Russian literature and how the Russian experience relates to contemporary American politics, including the tension between globalism nationalism, consumerism, cultural critiques of capitalism, trade-offs, and costs of globalization. We also discuss the issue of atheism and morality, and the problem Solzhenitsyn identified: that we are often embarrassed to talk about truth or good and evil as somehow archaic concepts, but if we want to take injustice and political and social evil seriously, we have to deal with conscience and good and evil in the human heart.

Visit https://www.themoralimagination.com/episodes/david-deavel for show notes and resources.

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The Moral Imagination -  Michael Matheson Miller
The Moral Imagination
Welcome to the Moral Imagination Podcast.
The overarching theme of my podcast is what it means to be a human person and what makes for a meaningful and good life.
We will discuss philosophy of the human person, culture, religion, social philosophy, and many other related topics, like education, learning, economics, food, technology, artificial intelligence, and intellectual history. My goal is to interact with ideas and people whose work I find challenging, and intellectually and socially important.