Mark Helprin’s The Pacific and Other Stories is the book. It is a powerful grouping of diverse tales that take place on different continents, at different times, and among different people. What is common to them all is the effect they produce ... Continue Reading »
Mark up your Calendars for the next weeks . . . Continue Reading »
It is a common thesis that the social/sexual changes of recent years are the flowering of the Sixties. This makes the best commentators and essayists of that era worth rereading. Continue Reading »
Kingsley Amis once said, “If it doesn't begin with ‘A shot rang out,' I don't want to read it.”
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Mark your calendars with some upcoming events . . . Continue Reading »
At the First Things retreat last weekend, Robert Louis Wilken delivered a somber and moving address about friendship. Wilken emphasized the need for a founding bond that is more than just personal, one that touches agreement on some fundamental questions of being and life. His words . . . . Continue Reading »
Mark your calendars for upcoming talks in Des Moines and New Haven.
I just finished reading Murder in Amsterdam: The Death of Theo van Gogh and the Limits of Tolerance by Ian Buruma. Ian Buruma is Dutch, and after the 2005 murder of Theo van Gogh by a young Islamist, the journalist spent many months back in his home country investigating the roots of the crime.
This week, for my sins, I read The Power of Positive Thinking and The Art of the Deal. I won't list my sins here, but you can tell by the penance that they are great. Norman Vincent Peale does not lay any great stress on sin in The Power of Positive Thinking. For him, it is more important to improve one's attitude, to think positively, than to say domine, non sum dignus.
I'm going to break protocol and tell you about what I've been watching. But what I've been watching happens to be hyper-hypertextual: Rodney Ascher's Room 237 is a geeked-out documentary about a prestige horror film, reminding us how prestige can precipitate (or arise from? or consist of?) a fever of discourse. Continue Reading »