Summer 1945 • Vol. VII No. 3 Book Reviews |

Brief Comment: The Middle Span (Continuing Persons and Places)

The Middle Span (Continuing Persons And Places) by George Santayana. Scribner’s. $2.50. It would have been kinder to Mr. Santayana, if less to his publishers’ profit, for them to have given us his autobiography complete instead of doling it out in small parcels. His personality, as he continues to reveal it with frankness in this second volume, is less admirable than his philosophy, though the flaws that appear magnified in the burning glass of a personal history serve to focus attention upon corresponding frailties in the doctrine. Coming as repeated blows, the insistent prejudices distract his readers from the disillusioned wisdom and the lyrical insights of his more impersonal books. Many had come to accept him as an ancient philosopher, with the cracks in his doctrine ivied and made venerable by time; and it is something less than pleasant to be confronted again by the snob, when he remains alive and unregenerate, or to find the quaint Tory an apologist for the Falange.

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