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​Russian Brahmin

From the April 2016 Print Edition

Laurusby eugene vodolazkintranslated by lisa haydenoneworld, 384 pages, $24.99 Eugene Vodolazkin’s novel Laurus has been much praised, especially by Christians, and rightly so. It is a fine novel. But at its heart, I suspect, the book is not Christian in spirit so much as Hindu—more . . . . Continue Reading »

Against Stupidity

From the November 2011 Print Edition

I have been thinking a lot about stupidity lately, largely, I suppose, because I spend a good deal of time online. I define stupidity as “remediable but unremedied ignorance,” and few human traits are more evident to a reader of your average website. It is relatively easy to discover that . . . . Continue Reading »

Beyond the Wild Wood

From the October 2009 Print Edition

The Annotated Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame, edited by Annie Gauger. W.W. Norton, 480 pages, $39.95 The Wind in the Willows: An Annotated Edition by Kenneth Grahame, edited by Seth Lerer Belknap/Harvard, 288 pages, $35 My history as a reader is an odd one. I began, conventionally enough, . . . . Continue Reading »

Pedantic Park

From the Aug/Sept 2009 Print Edition

Worlds Made of Words: Scholarship and Community in the Modern West by Anthony Grafton Harvard, 432 pages, $29.95 Alas, poor Casaubon! Your name, thanks to George Eliot, has become a byword for dryasdust pedantry and pseudomonastic self-absorption. The creaky scholar of Eliot’s novel . . . . Continue Reading »

Blessed Are the Green of Heart

From the May 2009 Print Edition

Some years ago I was leading a summer study tour in Oxford, England, during which as a matter of course—we were from Wheaton College, after all—we paid a visit to Magdalen College, the longtime academic home of C.S. Lewis. The dean of divinity, as Magdalen terms its chaplain, was gracious and . . . . Continue Reading »