July 2005
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July 2005 Archives

July 30, 2005

Chapter 2 to bed

Well, the changes to chapter 2 are now in bed. I will let it sit for a few days, then read the conclusion again, then send it off.

And so to work on job applications, and to think about chapter 3.

In other news, I wrote a draft of a kids book about the boys and I taking the dog for a walk. It is what the big toddler would call "a boring book" but I will work on it.

I just need to remember to bring the camera with me for the next few walks so that I can make some draft illustrations.

Posted by
Red Ted
at 02:07 PM | TrackBack
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July 22, 2005

Writing update and SHEAR

I have fallen off my older pattern of trying to write a paragraph or so every morning as a way of getting the writing started. I think I might want to get back to that - it did speed me up (as long as I did not spend too much time looking for something to write about.)

I got a fairly tight chapter 2, started working on structure of 3 again, then went back to 2 for a prose polish. I think I may have found a way to make the second half of 2 connect with the first half - focus the introduction and transitions on a conclusion that presents James Monroe as a semi-Burkean, preserving the revolution and passing it on to later generations. If I can then tie that to the idea that there are three distinct moments in the evolution of civil religion in the 1790s, 1801-1812, and 1812-1820s then I think I can avoid the problem of having a premature conclusion during the Revolution of 1800.

In other news, the SHEAR is in Philadelphia. Many of my peers from gradual school are teaching, writing, and being good professional historians. I am one of the few to have kids. It balances out.

And so to a panel on church and state in the early republic.

Posted by
Red Ted
at 07:22 AM | TrackBack
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July 14, 2005


I was working on James Madison's civil religion this evening and found something that reminded me why I should not read the news.

When I do read the news, I get angry, very angry, at the current administration. I then want to go off and read more, and write more, and vent that anger.

But I do not have the time away from writing to do that, not and finish. So I try to sublimate the anger.

Anyhow, I was working with Madison and found the close of his final annual message. This is the sort of document that, IMO, reveals the political cleavages in America today. I read this, and if I posted it on someplace like The Washington Monthly Kevin Drum would read it as a biting indictment of BushCo. If these same words were posted on one of the republican apologist sites like Powerline, they would take it as a rollicking endorsement. Then again, they have decided that since they like having their backs pissed on it must be raining.

Madison below the fold.

And may I not be allowed to add to this gratifying spectacle that I shall read in the character of the American people, in their devotion to true liberty and to the Constitution which is its palladium, sure presages that the destined career of my country will exhibit a Government pursuing the public good as its sole object, and regulating its means by the great principles consecrated in its charter and by those moral principles to which they are so well allied; a Government which watches over the purity of elections, the freedom of speech and of the press, the trial by jury, and the equal interdict against encroachments and compacts between religion and the state; which maintains inviolably the maxims of public faith, the security of persons and property, and encourages in every authorized mode the general diffusion of knowledge which guarantees to public liberty its permanency and to those who possess the blessing the true enjoyment of it; a Government which avoids intrusions on the internal repose of other nations, and repels them from its own; which does justice to all nations with a readiness equal to the firmness with which it requires justice from them; and which, whilst it refines its domestic code from every ingredient not congenial with the precepts of an enlightened age and the sentiments of a virtuous people, seeks by appeals to reason and by its liberal examples to infuse into the law which governs the civilized world a spirit which may diminish the frequency or circumscribe the calamities of war, and meliorate the social and beneficent relations of peace; a Government, in a word, whose conduct within and without may bespeak the most noble of ambitions - that of promoting peace on earth and good will to man.

Posted by
Red Ted
at 09:36 PM | TrackBack
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July 12, 2005

Ticklish Hair

This evening, after dinner, as we were taking our usual mile or so constitutional, the elder son decided he wanted "to be a runner." We spent some time working on his arm motion -- it just bugs me to see anyone run with chicken-wings -- but mostly he ran while I walked, pushed the stroller with the littler man, and managed the hound. At one point he was moving mighty quickly, so quickly that I had to jog a little to keep up with him. He looked up and announced

"The wind tickles my hair."

I really like that.

I liked it so much that I made the executive decision that my calf injury has indeed healed enough that I will go running again tomorrow, for the first time in weeks.

I want the wind to tickle my hair.

Posted by
Red Ted
at 08:25 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack
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July 08, 2005

Uniform of the Day

Today was a grey and rainy day.

Somehow both the boys ended up in bright yellow shirts this morning. So, I decided to make it the official uniform of the day and put one on myself. J was a slacker, and wore red. But then, she never wears the uniform of the day - it must be a guy thing.

Part of the fun of toddlers is that you can fairly regularly dress them alike. It is like playing with real live barbie dolls.

Only Barbie does not spill strawberry jam on herself quite the same way.

Posted by
Red Ted
at 07:30 PM | TrackBack
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Slow writing week

It has been a slow writing week, both for the blog and for the dissertation.

I am busy pounding my way through a retelling of Revolution of 1800 and its effects on American Civil Religion. The earlier draft was condemned by my advisor for containing good ideas buried under dead, repetitive prose.

He was right. I think I had tried to start that section half a dozen times, given up, and just pasted the various introductions together as if they were a subsection.

So, I scrapped it and am rewriting from scratch. It goes slowly.

And now to go re-read Wigger's book on Methodists to see if the comparison I am making in this paragraph is accurate.

Posted by
Red Ted
at 07:27 PM | TrackBack
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