Discourse on the Arts and Sciences by

Here is one of the greatest and most beautiful questions ever raised.
–Jean-Jacques Rousseau - Discourse on the Arts and Sciences - c.1750, 2014

translated by Ian Johnston – available online

So I decided to start an online course, on the spur of the moment, I may drop it. We’ll see. It is titled The Modern and the Postmodern, and starts with Kant and Rousseau. The first reading I did for it is this essay, by Jean-Jacques Rousseau, and I have to say I am unimpressed with his ideas. I do not wish to subscribe to his newsletter.

And it really feels like a proto-blog post. I guess that’s what people did before twitter and the internet, instead of threads and posts they wrote letters to the newspapers and published essays. In this essay Rousseau is all about how education destroys people. That civilisation and all the benefits that go along with that do nothing but destroy the true and simple man.

Damn, if it doesn’t sound like a self-entitled white dude moaning about how feminism is the end of women1 and we should look to the past, because wasn’t that better. Ugh, I disagree Mr. Rousseau, I disagree.


  1. cough cough Keven Myers 

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