Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Such as it is …

Solzhenitsyn’s powerfully stated argument about the trajectory of modern rationalism supplies much of the answer Christina Shelton is reaching for in Alger Hiss: Why He Chose Treason.

Shelton’s book probes a question many observers of Alger Hiss have long wondered about: why did Hiss doggedly maintain his innocence of charges that he was a spy for the Soviet Union, not only after he was accused by Whittaker Chambers in 1948, but after his federal conviction in 1950, even until his death in 1996? Shelton’s verdict on Hiss’s refusal to recant or apologize is that he believed as a matter of conscience in the rational constructive project of communism. For Hiss, the vindication of man rested in communist soulcraft.

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