Word of the Day: Nescient


(adj.); absence of knowledge or awareness; ignorance; from Late Latin ne (“not”) + sciential (“knowledge”)

“Prejudice is the child of ignorance.”

–William Hazlitt, from his essay “On Prejudice.

There is any number of cliches to draw upon when describing ignorance. It is bliss; it is strength; it is not a crime; it is the enemy of knowledge; it is an excuse; it is not an excuse. Goethe wrote that there is nothing more frightful than ignorance in action. John Lennon sang that living is easy with eyes closed. This week, Dominic Green writes a lively piece for the Atlantic investigating the topic of Enlightenment: of great overturnings of human ignorance, of discovery and advancement of knowledge, and the underlying trouble with Enlightenment with a capital E. Brimming with colorful quotes and drawing from a vast literature of history and culture, Green investigates what it means to be “enlightened” in the modern world, and the necessity of creating our own enlightenment.

Sara Menuck is currently pursuing BA in English & Professional Writing at York University, Toronto, without being very professional at all. Having interned with a variety of small press publications, she currently works as a prose reader for The Winter Tangerine Review, a department editorial assistant, and, in her free time, a teacher of music to very small, adorable children. More from this author →