Support First Things by turning your adblocker off or by making a  donation. Thanks!

A Cloak of Fiction

Flannery O’Connor argued that the separation of matter and spirit, nature and grace, was fatal to the art of fiction, which requires an interest in characters, stories, and concrete details rather than problems, issues, and abstract statements. Novel-­writing, she insisted, is “so very much an . . . . Continue Reading »

Fiction and Friendship

For reasons I haven’t been able to figure out, friendship—deep, genuine friendship—gets short shrift in contemporary fiction. The Chet & Bernie books are wonderful exceptions, and I am immensely grateful for them. Continue Reading »


Cassandra Nelson’s “A Theo­logy of Fiction” (April) is a welcome intervention and advance in an ­ongoing conversation that, as ­Nelson herself notes, I’ve been invested in for some time. Nelson’s attentiveness to the work of Sr. Mariella Gable—and her related readings of a series . . . . Continue Reading »

Briefly Noted

Donald J. Devine’sThe Enduring Tension energetically defends liberal capitalism, less from critics hailing from the secular left than from religious and traditionalist commentators ­ranging from Rod Dreher and Patrick Deneen to Pope Francis. Devine makes challenging arguments concerning the . . . . Continue Reading »

Filter Tag Articles