The Corner

Leon Wieseltier & The Reification of Reason

One of the more eye-stopping responses to my post on Peter Robinson on Leon Wieseltier on Daniel Dennett, from a reader who identifies himself in the subject line as Jewish:

“We’re not suckered by Aristotelean and Catholic word problems, no, but remember that there’s a strong current of Marxism in secular Jewish culture, starting with… well, with Marx. And one can claim that certain talmudic traditions involve extreme reification as well.

“Although we can’t prove that evolution was responsible for the ASPM gene’s sudden (2 million year) catapulting of the human brain to creating shows like American Idol, but I don’t see much else that speaks well of us, in a natural and sexual selection sense.

“I mean, we don’t really have much in the way of claws or teeth. Our upper body strength is far less than the animals we like to eat. And as far as speed goes? Not much, either. So there we are, stuck on a savannah with no claws, bad teeth and slow, flat feet (and oy, they hurt). So how the heck are we going to get that mammoth? How are we going to spirit away the meat before other predators arrive?

“And in a sexual selection sense, it still works today. Girls still like the boys who can bring home the mammoth, er, bacon.”

Bacon? And this guy is Jewish? And mammoths lived on tundra, not savannah. Apart from that… thank you for writing, Sir.

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