Realigning Jewish Peoplehood

On July 22, 2007, the New York Times ran an article by Harvard law professor Noah Feldman on the repercussions of his marrying outside his Jewish faith. The article, entitled “Orthodox Paradox,” details how Feldman, a Yeshiva day-school graduate, Rhodes scholar, and all-around Jewish wunderkind . . . . Continue Reading »

Hannah Montana

Even if you go around with one or several fingers stuffed into each ear, you will not be able to exclude the words “Hannah Montana” from your field of consciousness, especially now that the number one movie in the United States bears that name. No American citizen is permitted to be . . . . Continue Reading »

Harvey Cox’s Secular City

In the next few days (March 19), Harvard theologian Harvey Cox will be celebrating his seventy-eighth birthday. Since I’m pressing right behind him, this seemed like a good time to express my gratitude for many kindnesses of his so many years ago—for so many stimulating conversations and . . . . Continue Reading »

The Closing of the American Mind Revisited

The most recent number of The Intercollegiate Review, published by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute, features a symposium marking the twentieth anniversary of the publication of Allan Bloom’s The Closing of the American Mind. Has it really been that long?Bloom’s book was a real sensation . . . . Continue Reading »

Cardinal Newman for Ash Wednesday

No theologian working inside the traditions of western Christianity was more sensitive to the rhythms of the Church’s liturgical year than was John Henry Newman. Which, of course, stands to reason, given the fact that, as an Anglican curate at St. Clement’s in Oxford and later as vicar . . . . Continue Reading »

Reason and Pop Atheism

The publishing world, it seems, is just as prone to the fickleness of trends and fashions as is, well, the fashion industry. A few years ago, a whole spate of books came out on Pope Pius XII and the Holocaust, most of them flogging (surely not by coincidence) the same dead horse of papal perfidy. . . . . Continue Reading »

Leithart: Manners & Modes of Worship

The German historian of manners Norbert Elias begins his book The Civilizing Process by asking how the “modes of behaviour considered typical of people who are civilized in a Western way” came about. Through a survey of etiquette books and other documents dealing with topics like table . . . . Continue Reading »

RJN: Neocons v. Theocons: The Sequel

Evangelicals have never forgotten, and for good reason they have never forgotten, that Washington Post story of a few years ago that described them as “poor, uneducated, and easily led.” The Post apologized for it, sort of, but the sentiment lives on in large sectors of the commenting . . . . Continue Reading »