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The Splendor of Truth in 2017

There are times when we must sink to the bottom of our misery to understand truth, just as we must descend to the bottom of a well to see the stars in broad daylight.” Those are strong words, written by the Czech activist Václav Havel in his essay “The Power of the Powerless,” one of the . . . . Continue Reading »

Catholic America

Continental Ambitions:  Roman Catholics in North America  by kevin starr ignatius, 675 pages, $34.95 In The Good Shepherd, the 2006 spy film, mobster Joseph Palmi asks CIA agent (and stereotypical WASP) Edward Wilson an insolent question: “We Italians, we got our families . . . . Continue Reading »

On Being a Lapsed Catholic

In 1967, Anthony Burgess, author of “A Clockwork Orange,” described the pain of being an apostate: “It is with no indifferent eye that I view the flood of worshippers pouring into the Catholic church...I want to be one of them, but wanting is not enough.” Continue Reading »

Tate Unmodern

Allen Tate: The Modern Mind and the Discovery of Enduring Loveby john v. glass iiithe catholic university of america, 376 pages, $59.95 I well remember sitting up half the night annotating Allen Tate’s “Ode to the Confederate Dead” in my Norton anthology. As do I remember reading for the first . . . . Continue Reading »

Briefly Noted

On the Road to Vatican II: German Catholic Enlightenment and Reform of the Churchby ulrich l. lehnerfortress, 414 pages, $49 On the Road to Vatican II focuses on German and ­Austrian theological debates in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries as examples of the Catholic Enlightenment. Historians . . . . Continue Reading »

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