Return to Order author John Horvat delivered a paper on manliness and chivalry at the Inaugural Men’s Summit of the Masculine Genius Institute. The meeting was held on May 18-20 at the Cardinal Stritch Retreat Center on the grounds of the seminary in Mundelein, Ill. It was co-sponsored by the vibrant Philadelphia-based men’s group, The King’s Men.
The theme of the conference was “Forging a Vision of Manliness” and traced the history of manliness from Genesis to the present. Among the speakers were Fr. Joseph Levine, Mark Houck, John Horvat, Dr. Deborah Savage, Fr. Gabriel Torretta, Dr. Phillip Chavez, Dr. Greg Bottero, Dr. Peter Colosi and Matthew Cristoff.
Institute founder Dr. Phillip Chavez praised the summit as an “occasion to explore the character of manliness as it has been depicted in Church history and developed by thinkers of antiquity.
Mr. Horvat’s presentation “Masculinity Through Medieval Chivalric Legends” discussed the medieval institutions of chivalry and feudalism. He cited passages from the chivalric epic poem, The Song of Roland, to illustrate his point. The vision describe by these legend have their value for the present.
“I maintain that we must include chivalry and chivalric legends as an essential part of this vision,” Horvat said. “This is because this vision is not limited to knights of yore. It is a universal vision that presupposes a spirit of chivalry, which should permeate the idea of manliness to its very core.”