Cultura Animi

Carry the Flag!

‘Each man fortunate enough to benefit to some degree from this legacy of culture seemed to me responsible for protecting it and holding it in trust for the human race’, wrote Marguerite Yourcenar. But it seems like today we would rather hand over problems, crises and misery to the next generation than civilisation, values and cultural heritage. Under Yourcenar’s motto, Nexus has been resisting that trend for more than thirty years now. In Carry the Flag!, the sixth volume of the English-language Cultura Animi series, Rob Riemen draws on personal meetings to describe the responsibility we all have when it comes to protecting and passing on good things. János Starker, George Steiner, Adam Zagajewski, Jacqueline de Romilly each did this in their own way, and remain inspiring examples.

Support the Nexus Institute by becoming a Nexus member. Subscribe now and receive a copy of Cultura Animi III, Becoming Human Is an Art as a welcome gift. Find out more and join.


Carry the Flag!

When I got up to take my leave, János firmly shook my hand, held it tight and, looking me straight in the eye, said to me: ‘Rob, carry the flag!’ Every one of us will be familiar with the fact that in life you are occasionally confronted with a remark that touches you so deeply that it becomes engraved on your heart. In a flash you become aware of something true about yourself, who you are or ought to be, what you do or ought to do… Carry the flag! The flag to which János was referring is the flag that he carried himself all his life, the flag of the oldest Republic in human history, the flag of the respublica literaria, the Republic of Letters.’