UNT Libraries - 4 Matching Results

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Rebecca West: a Worthy Legacy

Description: Given Rebecca West's fame during her lifetime, the amount of significant and successful writing she created, and the importance and relevance of the topics she took up, remarkably little has been done to examine her intellectual legacy. Writing in most genres, West has created a body of work that illuminates, to a large degree, the social, artistic, moral, and political evolution of the twentieth century. West, believing in the unity of human experience, explored such topics as Saint Augustine, Yugoslavian history, treason in World War II, and apartheid in South Africa with the purpose of finding what specific actions or events meant in the light of the whole of human experience. The two major archival sources for Rebecca West materials are located at the University of Tulsa's McFarlin Library, Special Collections, and at the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Yale University. Many of her works have been recently reprinted and those not easily available are found in the British Library or in the archival depositories noted above. Interviews with persons who knew West were also an important source of information. This dissertation explores chronologically West's numerous works of nonfiction, and uses her fiction where it is appropriate to place into context social, historical, or biographical topics. The manner in which she took up the topics of feminism, art, religion, nationalism, war, history, treason, spying, and apartheid demonstrate the wide-ranging mind of an intellectual historian and social critic. Though her eclecticism makes her a difficult subject, the diversity of her mind and her talent in expressing her thoughts, allow her work to symbolize and illuminate twentieth century intellectual history. Known for her elegant fiction, and forceful personal style, West should also be known as a thinker and social critic. What is common to her eclectic opera is that she ...
Date: May 1989
Creator: Urie, Dale Marie

The Enlightenment Legacy of David Hume

Description: Although many historians assert the unity of the Enlightenment, their histories essentially belie this notion. Consequently, Enlightenment history is confused and meaningless, urging the reader to believe that diversity is similarity and faction is unity. Fundamental among the common denominators of these various interpretations, however, are the scientific method and empirical observation, as introduced by Newton. These, historians acclaim as the turning point when mankind escaped the ignorance of superstition and the oppression of the church, and embarked upon the modern secular age. The Enlightenment, however, founders immediately upon its own standards of empiricism and demonstrable philosophical tenets, with the exception of David Hume. As the most consistent and fearless empiricist of the era, Hume's is by far the most "legitimate" philosophy of the Enlightenment, but it starkly contrasts the rhetoric and ideology of the philosophe community, and, therefore, defies attempts by historians to incorporate it into the traditional Enlightenment picture. Hume, then, exposes the Enlightenment dilemma: either the Enlightenment is not empirical, but rather the new Age of Faith Carl Becker proclaimed it, or Enlightenment philosophy is that of Hume. This study presents the historical characterization of major Enlightenment themes, such as method, reason, religion, morality, and politics, then juxtaposes this picture with the particulars (data) that contradict or seriously qualify it. As a result, much superficial analysis, wishful thinking, even proselytizing is demonstrated in the traditional Enlightenment characterization, especially with regard to the widely heralded liberal and progressive legacy of the era. In contrast, Hume's conclusions, based on the method of Newton-the essence of "enlightened" philosophy, are presented, revealing the authoritarian character (and legacy) of the Enlightenment as well as the utility and relevance of its method when honestly and rigorously applied. Through David Hume, the twentieth century can truly acquire what the Enlightenment promised—an understanding of human ...
Date: December 1989
Creator: Jenkins, Joan (Joan Elizabeth)

Texas and the CCC: A Case Study in the Successful Administration of a Confederated State and Federal Program

Description: Reacting to the Great Depression, Texans abandoned the philosophy of rugged individualism and turned to their state and federal governments for leadership. Texas's Governor Miriam Ferguson resultantly created the state's first relief agency, which administered all programs including those federally funded. Because the Roosevelt administration ordered state participation in and immediate implementation of the CCC, a multi-governmental, multi-departmental administrative alliance involving state and federal efforts resulted, which, because of scholars' preferences for research at the federal level, often is mistakenly described as a decentralized administration riddled with bureaucratic shortcomings. CCC operations within Texas, however, revealed that this complicated administrative structure embodied the reasons for the CCC's well-documented success.
Date: December 1989
Creator: Wellborn, Mark Alan

Czechoslovakia's Fortifications: Their Development and Impact on Czech and German Confrontation

Description: During the 1930s, the Republic of Czechoslovakia endeavored to construct a system of modern fortifications along its frontiers to protect the Republic from German and Hungarian aggression and from external Versailles revisionism. Czechoslovakia's fortifications have been greatly misrepresented through comparison with the Maginot Line. By utilizing extant German military reports, this thesis demonstrates that Czechoslovakia's fortifications were incomplete and were much weaker than the Maginot Line at the time of the Munich Crisis in 1938. The German threat of war against Czechoslovakia was very real in 1938 and Germany would have penetrated most of the fortifications and defeated Czechoslovakia quickly had a German-Czech war occurred in 1938.
Date: May 1989
Creator: Walvoord, Kreg A. (Kreg Anthony)