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Irving Kristol on Leo Strauss

8:49 PM, Sep 18, 2009 • By RACHEL ABRAMS
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Irving Kristol, 1952, writing about Leo Strauss in the pages of Commentary:

No doubt, there will be scholars who will respectfully dispute Professor Strauss on just about every point. They will find, as many already know, that he is a most formidable opponent. And if in time the victory goes to Professor Strauss, he will have accomplished nothing less than a revolution in intellectual history, and most of us will-figuratively, at least-have to go back to school to learn the wisdom of the past that we thought we knew. It is fortunate for us that the lessons will be rather more exciting, and more daring in their implications, than we remember them. And it is a consolation of sorts to know in advance that, for those of us who fail to learn this art of reading, provision has been made.

Of course Irving could not know at the age of 32 that he was in fact describing in advance his own future achievement-a revolution in intellectual history-but that's just what he was doing.