Be somewhat afraid

Leon Wieseltier has a wonderful little meditation on fear and its uses that packs many insights into very few words. Fear is traditionally feared as the enemy of self-mastery, the trait that may well lie beneath all others, but the absence of fear is not just hubris, it's also a creepy kind of indiffference. If you don't fear for your kids, do you really care about them? Fearing nothing, can we live for anything? Why do liberals and conservatives deviate from one another so strongly in the forms of alarmism they embrace? Don't be afraid, check it out.

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Daniel Akst

Dan Akst is a journalist, essayist and novelist who wrote three books. His novel, The Webster Chronicle, is based on the lives of Cotton and Increase Mather. More

Dan Akst is a journalist, novelist and essayist whose work has appeared frequently in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Boston Globe, Wilson Quarterly, and many other publications.

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