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O Light Exalted

From the February 2022 Print Edition

Dante’s understanding of the heavens—as spheres rotating around the Earth—has been out of date astronomically for nearly half a millennium. Dante’s political world consisted of a score of perpetually warring Italian city states and a few greedy, scheming popes. His intellectual . . . . Continue Reading »

Saint and Scribe

From the February 2018 Print Edition

Lessons in Hope: My Unexpected Life with St. John Paul IIby george weigelbasic, 368 pages, $32 Czesław Miłosz once said that, in terms of moral grandeur and personal presence, St. John Paul II could have been one of Shakespeare’s kings. No less a judge than Joseph Ratzinger noted that it was . . . . Continue Reading »

Out of a Dark Wood

From the June/July 2015 Print Edition

How Dante Can Save Your Life: The Life-Changing Wisdom of History’s Greatest Poem
  by rod dreher 
 regan, 320 pages, $29.95 In 2011, Rod Dreher returns to his hometown in West Feliciana Parish, Louisiana, after years living elsewhere in pursuit of a (highly successful) journalistic . . . . Continue Reading »

Chastened Humanism

From the November 2012 Print Edition

You cannot help but like a serious thinker who demolishes the pretensions of various fashionable currents of thought, starting with the 1968 French student rebellion, by pointing out the anti-human strains at their very heart. Or who, at the height of the academic infatuation with deconstruction, . . . . Continue Reading »

Problems with (Some) Catholic Social Thought

From Web Exclusives

Reinhard Marx, the Cardinal Archbishop of Munich and Freising, is a genial man with a sense of humor, as I’ve learned in conversations with him. Given his last name, it was a clever stroke to title his 2008 book on Catholic social thought Das Kapital: A Plea for Man. As head of the German bishops’ committee on social questions, he has been a strong advocate for curbs on what Europeans often refer to as “savage capitalism.” … Continue Reading »

The China Syndrome

From Web Exclusives

The Internet brings us relentless cataracts of overwhelming, undesired, and often unwelcome information. But once in a great while the immense swirl of digital 0s and 1s assembles itself into something surprising”and leads to unexpected truths… . Continue Reading »

A Spanish Lesson

From Web Exclusives

For most people, the Spanish Civil War is ancient history and the rare soul who bothers to look into it finds a kind of pre-Cold War throwback, (allegedly) pitting faith and fascism on the one hand, against unbelief and communism on the other. Furthermore, partisanship led to some truly awful artistic and historical accounts of the struggle, even leaving aside the Communist propaganda… . Continue Reading »

Sarkozy and Secularism

From Web Exclusives

A few years ago, I was in the middle of giving a lecture in Paris about religious persecution and martyrdom during the twentieth century when a woman stood up and shouted, “The French state has been repressing and killing Christians ever since the Revolution¯and it has to stop!” Her . . . . Continue Reading »