A point of particular interest, in which the authors were far ahead of their time, is their recognition of the extent to which modern societies have “disenfranchised the family in the key area of education.” Of all the criticisms that can be leveled against the educational theories of John Dewey and his epigones, this is by far the most telling.
See recommended reading by John Dewey
The design argument that Paley then proceeds to give replaces the watch with terrestrial flora and fauna and their intricate parts. Paley—evidently a keen amateur naturalist—gives many examples, from the diverse mechanisms of seed dispersion to the tongue of the woodpecker, but his example of the eye is the one typically quoted. How could such a “complicated mechanism” have arisen, Paley asks, if not by the action of a designer?
See recommended reading by William Paley
He has mellowed the harsh sounds of the English trumpet to the soft accents of the flute.
See recommended reading by Alexander Pope
Writing at the time of Louis XIV’s absolutism in an era of austerely reflective Catholicism, Racine proposes an all-or-nothing morality, in which there is no grey area of compromise and good and evil cannot be altered or evaded.
See recommended reading by Racine
Updates to my recommended reading ... added to posts on these authors:
Mackubin Thomas Owens on Abraham Lincoln
Kevin M. Saylor on William Wordsworth
The Economist on Alfred North Whitehead