ARTICLES

Charles Moore's Spectator column 4 Nov

In Oxford a week ago, the last of the first Roger Scruton memorial lectures took place. It was delivered by Jonathan Sumption, whose subject was, simply, ‘Democracy’. Its survival, he said, was by no means assured. After it, I interviewed him on stage. The memory of Sir Roger, the great conservative thinker, was suitably honoured by the venue, the Sheldonian. And the fact that his ideas are of the moment was confirmed by the numbers: 700 people, mostly undergraduates, got in and others had to be turned away. The Roger Scruton Legacy Foundation, which organised everything, is an impressive collection of highly motivated young intellectuals. The series had the official seal of approval by Chris Patten, the Chancellor of Oxford, who gave the vote of thanks. This was all very heartening, and I was glad that Lord Patten made a point of emphasising the importance of freedom of thought and speech at his university. But it was interesting that he felt the need to do so: such things did not even need saying at great British universities in the late 20th century. One of Roger’s best achievements was to help the ‘flying’ universities that met covertly in communist eastern Europe in the 1980s. I remember him describing the ardour with which students sucked in the air of intellectual freedom. I sense a comparable hunger in Oxford today, as the threat to freedom grows.

The full article can be read here.

CONTACT
 
To contact Scrutopia, please email: 
contact@rogerscruton.com
MAILING LIST

 

Subscribe to our mailing list.
* indicates required
 
 
SCRUTARI SEMPER TWEETS
The Roger Scruton Memorial Lecture Series returns on Mon 17 Oct at the Sheldonian Theatre. Katharine Birbalsingh wi… https://t.co/cvvaMIB4bZ
RT @CommonSenseScty: Announcing our 2022 Britannia fellows! In just a few days, we'll gather at the stunning @BowoodHouse to explore the fo…
Follow Scrutari semper on Twitter