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Virginia Arbery

10 Podcast Episodes

Latest 6 Aug 2022 | Updated Daily

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Introduction to William Faulkner’s ”Go Down, Moses” by Dr. Virginia Arbery

The After Dinner Scholar

Author Ann-Marie MacDonald noted, “It’s important to attend funerals. It is important to view the body, they say, and to see it committed to earth or fire because unless you do that, the loved one dies for you again and again.” In “Go Down, Moses,” the final chapter of his novel Go Down, Moses, William Faulkner tells us the story about a funeral. The deceased is a young man executed in Chicago for murder. Home is back in Mississippi and his grandmother who raised him is determined to bring him back home to bury him. For that she’ll need a great deal of help. Dr. Virginia Arbery gave the 2022 Wyoming School of Catholic Thought this introduction to Faulkner’s story.

32mins

26 Jul 2022

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”Freedom”: An Intellectual Retreat with Dr. Virginia Arbery

The After Dinner Scholar

Regarding freedom, First Things editor Dr. R. R. Reno writes, “It’s a very American word. But do we understand freedom’s promise? To what end does God liberate the Israelites? What is the freedom for which Christ has set us free? Is an unhindered man a free man? Can I remain free even when held in captivity?” For most people today, freedom means the ability to do as I wish, when I wish, as I wish, and with whomever I wish. Freedom is the sovereign self doing as it pleases. The ancient Greek stoic philosopher Epictetus sounding extremely contemporary asked, “Is freedom anything else than the right to live as we wish?” Then, answering his own questions, he responded, “Nothing else.” This coming March 25 and 26 in Phoenix, Arizona First Things is sponsoring an intellectual retreat on the topic of freedom. Members of the Wyoming Catholic College faculty including Dr. Virginia Arbery will serve as seminar leaders. Dr. Arbery is our guest this week. For more information on the First Things Intellectual Retreat on Freedom, follow this link.

16mins

22 Feb 2022

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Shakespeare's Rome: "Coriolanus" and the Republic by Dr. Virginia Arbery

The After Dinner Scholar

You common cry of curs! whose breath I hateAs reek o' the rotten fens, whose loves I prizeAs the dead carcasses of unburied menThat do corrupt my air, I banish you;And here remain with your uncertainty!Let every feeble rumour shake your hearts! The quote is from William Shakespeare’s tragedy “Coriolanus.” Coriolanus was a great war hero during the fifth century BC, the early years of the Roman Republic. After returning from a great victory, the Roman Senate would make him a consul—the highest office in the city. But the common people of Rome egged on by their leaders, the tribunes, believe him too proud and vote instead to banish him from the city. In anger Coriolanus cries, “I banish you,” leaves the city, and joins ranks with the enemy to revenge the insult by conquering Rome. “Coriolanus” was the first of three plays we considered in June at the Wyoming School of Catholic Thought as we considered “’Shakespeare’s Rome.” Before we divided into seminar groups, Dr. Virginia Arbery delivered this introduction to the play, to the Roman Republic, and to questions concerning our own republic.

53mins

6 Jul 2021

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Rhetoric and Senior Orations with Dr. Virginia Arbery

The After Dinner Scholar

Mark Twain observed, “There are only two types of speakers in the world. 1. The nervous and 2. Liars.” I suspect that our Wyoming Catholic College seniors can relate. In the fall semester, Wyoming Catholic College seniors write theses on topics of their choosing. This week, at the beginning of Spring semester, each senior will share his or her thesis research with the college community in a senior oration. Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday classes are canceled and each member of the class of 2021 will deliver a half hour lecture followed by a half hour of questions put to them by a faculty panel and by their fellow students. Dr. Virginia Arbery teaches rhetoric, the foundation of the senior orations and she shares with us the place of rhetoric and public speaking in a Wyoming Catholic College education.

16mins

9 Feb 2021

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Morning Light - Dr. Glenn & Dr. Virginia Arbery (AUG. 3)

Salt & Light Catholic Radio Podcasts

     Morning Light welcomes Dr. Glenn Arbery (President) and his wife Dr. Virginia Arbery (Professor) at Wyoming Catholic College.  The topic is classical education and the renewal of St. Paul’s Catholic School. 

16mins

3 Aug 2020

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Alexandre Solzhenitsyn "A World Split Apart": A Conversation Between Dr. Virginia Arbery and Dr. Pavlos Papadopoulos

The After Dinner Scholar

On June 8, 1978, Alexandre Solzhenitsyn went to Harvard University and delivered his now famous commencement address, “A World Split Apart.” It was, to say the least, not what people expected—or wanted. By the time he delivered the Harvard commencement address, Solzhenitsyn had been living in the United States for some time, observing our politics and culture. In the address he offered a critique of our ideas of freedom and the good, of our sense of well-being, of our overall shortsightedness, and our lack of spirituality. Wyoming Catholic College sophomores read Solzhenitsyn’s Harvard commencement address as part of Trivium 202: Political Rhetoric and the Common Good. In that course they not only study great examples of rhetoric, but learn to write and deliver their own speeches. With those students at home across the land, Drs. Virginia Arbery and Pavlos Papadopoulos recorded this conversation about Solzhenitsyn.

32mins

12 May 2020

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Senior Orations, Rhetoric, and the Pursuit of Truth with Dr. Virginia Arbery

The After Dinner Scholar

“Wisdom without eloquence is of little advantage,” said the great Roman orator Marcus Tullius Cicero, “but eloquence without wisdom is most mischievous.” Last week was a big week here at Wyoming Catholic College. Classes were canceled on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday to make room for three days of senior orations. Each of our seniors writes a thesis during the fall semester and then in late February delivers a half-hour lecture on their thesis topic followed by a half-hour of questions—first from the faculty panel that will be grading the oration and then from the audience. The school community—students, faculty, and staff—make up the audience that also includes family and alumni who make the trip back to Lander to hear our seniors present their ideas with wonderful rhetorical skill. “How do they come by that skill?” you ask. Part of our integrated curriculum is the sequence of courses called the Trivium: grammar, logic, and rhetoric. Dr. Virginia Arbery teaches Trivium 202: Political Rhetoric and the Common Good. Dr. Arbery is our guest on this edition of The After Dinner Scholar.

15mins

25 Feb 2020

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"Unexpected Friendship: The Murderer and the Harlot" by Dr. Virginia Arbery

The After Dinner Scholar

“On an exceptionally hot evening early in July a young man came out of the garret in which he lodged in S. Place and walked slowly, as though in hesitation, towards K. bridge. “He had successfully avoided meeting his landlady on the staircase. His garret was under the roof of a high, five-storied house and was more like a cupboard than a room. The landlady who provided him with garret, dinners, and attendance, lived on the floor below, and every time he went out he was obliged to pass her kitchen, the door of which invariably stood open. And each time he passed, the young man had a sick, frightened feeling, which made him scowl and feel ashamed. He was hopelessly in debt to his landlady, and was afraid of meeting her.” Thus begins Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s novel Crime and Punishment. "He" in this case is Rodion Romanovich Raskolnikov, a college drop-out living in abject poverty in 19th century St. Petersburg, Russia. Consumed with misery, anger, and a strange sense of self-importance, Raskolnikov will in the course of the novel commit a double murder plunging him even deeper into despair. Along the way, he meets Sonia Marmeladov. She is the child of a hopeless drunk who, in order to support her father, his second wife, and his step-children, sells the only thing she possesses: herself in prostitution. How the friendship between harlot and the murderer becomes the source of redemption is the topic of the novel and was the topic Dr. Virginia Arbery addressed at the 2019 Wyoming School of Catholic Thought. This is what she had to say.

43mins

23 Jul 2019

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Friendship and Politics by Dr. Virginia Arbery

The After Dinner Scholar

When we think of politics, for most of us the word “friendship” is not the first thing that comes into our minds. Our politics are rancorous, ugly, polarized, and just about everything else politics is not supposed to be. In spite of the rancorous, ugly, polarized politics of Ancient Athens, Aristotle suggested that what holds cities that is, the root of politics is friendship. At June’s Wyoming School of Catholic Thought, Dr. Virginia Arbery looked at friendship and politics using The Politics by Aristotle. Here is some of what she had to say.

26mins

9 Jul 2019

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St. Augustine, the City of God, and the City of Man with Dr. Virginia Arbery

The After Dinner Scholar

In AD 380, not long before the sack of Rome in 410, the Emperor Theodocius had declared Christianity the official religion of the Empire. Perhaps, many argued, that was the problem. Many worshiped Jesus abandoning the old gods of Rome—Jupiter, Juno, Minerva, Apollo, Aphrodite, and the rest. No doubt those gods sent the barbarians to destroy the city as punishment for the lack of piety. In Roman North Africa, there was a town called Hippo. And the bishop of Hippo, Augustine, got wind of those arguments, picked up his pen, and began writing what has become one of the world’s greatest apologetic and greatest political treatises: The City of God. Wyoming Catholic College students study The City of God as sophomores and then again as seniors. At least once and sometimes twice, their professor is political philosopher, Dr. Virginia Arbery. Dr. Arbery is our guest this week on The After Dinner Scholar.

15mins

11 Dec 2018