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The Banality of Sin

Professor of Jewish Education and Psychology at the Hebrew College, Boston, and a practicing psychologist, Solomon Schimmel here addresses the theme of the seven deadly sins. He argues that the category of “sin” has been neglected by “secularists,” whereas the “sins of tradition, and . . . . Continue Reading »

The New Liberal Racism

The shockingly violent reaction to the Rodney King verdict, destined to be remembered as the great Los Angeles Riot of 1992, has provoked more intense discussion among the American public about the nation’s perennial problems of race relations and urban affairs than at any time since the “long . . . . Continue Reading »

Friendship and Its Discontents

Samuel Johnson believed that Burton’s Anatomy of Melancholy made the finest bedside reading, in the morning as well as the evening, of any book he knew (and he knew a lot of them). C. S. Lewis, in Surprised by Joy, reflecting upon books that are good to read while eating—which . . . . Continue Reading »

Scripture for the Gender-Correct

The Women’s Bible Commentary edited by Carol A. Newsom and Sharon H. Ringe Westminster/John Knox Press, 396 pages, $20Like most children of my era who got a religious education, I grew up on Bible stories. The stories of the women in the Bible—rare as pearls of great price among the . . . . Continue Reading »

The Limits of Populism

Jeffrey Bell has been an aid to both Ronald Reagan and Jack Kemp, a candidate for the Senate, and fellow at a number of different institutes. He is currently president of Lehrman Bell Mueller Cannon, Inc., an economic and political forecasting firm in northern Virginia. This book, clearly based in . . . . Continue Reading »

The Perils of Historical Positivism

Of the many obstacles that the modern world has thrown up in front of Judaism and Christianity, certainly one of the most damaging would be the historical-critical method. This form of intellectual inquiry has transformed radically the manner in which modern persons construe the origins of Scripture . . . . Continue Reading »

The Cultural Middle Ground

What Joan Shelley Rubin aims to do in The Making of Middlebrow Culture is “redress the disregard and oversimplification of middlebrow culture in the 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s by illuminating the values and attitudes that shaped some of its major expressions.” Thus she lets us know at . . . . Continue Reading »

The Death of the Goddess

It has been thousands of years since goddesses have been so much on people’s minds, at least in the West. What has brought them back with a vengeance (often literally so) is the feminist movement. “Earth-centered, immanent, and immediate, the Goddess of modern neopaganism serves as a refuge . . . . Continue Reading »

The New Class Reconsidered

Roughly twenty years ago social scientists and intellectuals discovered the existence of a “new” class. Unlike the Marxist division of the world into bourgeoisie and proletariat—a division defined by each class’s relationship to production—new class theory stressed control over the . . . . Continue Reading »

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