12 Pages

Manuscript of Felix Leitner’s “My First Divorce,” Written for Roger Cutter in 1965

ByLouis Auchincloss

Until the Industrial Revolution European forebears had lived in a society where the universe was deemed to have a purpose and where a deity judged men, rewarding them or condemning them according to an absolute standard of right and wrong. And the dethronement of the deity was followed by a long succession of political theories as to who was to judge men and by what standards: a king, a parliament, a congress, the people. The churches were the moments of a civilization founded in the rule of a supervising God who dealt out awards and punishments. The people who lived under those towers had duties, but they also had rewards.