The Book, Cat, & Cat Book Lovers Almanac

of historical trivia regarding books, cats, and other animals. Actually this blog has evolved so that it is described better as a blog about cats in history and culture. And we take as a theme the advice of Aldous Huxley: If you want to be a writer, get some cats. Don't forget to see the archived articles linked at the bottom of the page.

September 26, 2009

Sept. 26, 1952

George Santayana died on September 26, 1952. This European philosopher taught at Harvard and is noted for his views of America. The following is an excerpt from a letter he did not expect to be published and is addressed to a "Mr. Brooks," who had written a volume titled "Emerson and Others."

The letter defends Emerson from the charges of pedantry in this manner:

Have you maliciously put things together so as to let the cat out of the bag? Sham sympathy, sham classicism, sham universality, all got from books and pictures [lie behind your portrayal of Emerson].

Santayana goes on to defend an American spirit which does not depend on European aestheticism. He says of America: "The good things are football, kindness, jazz bands." His comments were written on May 22, 1927.

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