The Past Deserves a Seat at the Table

Intellectual Takeout | August 11, 2015

The Past Deserves a Seat at the Table

We live in an age that views itself as necessarily superior to the ages that preceded it. As such, it doesn’t have much use for history and the opinions of those who came before us. For many today, past tradition no longer serves as an authority.

But the famous British author G.K. Chesterton (1874-1936) believed that a disdain for the past did not really live up to today’s prized value of “equity.” He describes tradition as a form of democracy – the “democracy of the dead” – that, in making judgments, takes into account not only the opinions of those in the present, but also those of the past:

Image credit: Loz Pycock