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Faith by the Numbers

Equations from God: Pure Mathematics and ­Victorian Faith by daniel j. cohen  johns hopkins university press, 256 pages, $50 It is tempting to treat mathematics as though it existed in a socio-historical vacuum, unaffected by what happens to people and societies. Though, like any other . . . . Continue Reading »

Abortion Politics 2008

For reasons quite plausible, even to people on the pro-life side, Rudolph Giuliani persists in standing well ahead of the pack of the Republican candidates for president. He has sounded the traditional Republican themes: preserving the Bush tax cuts, seeking free-market solutions to problems such as . . . . Continue Reading »

America’s Two Foundings

Contrasting judgments often arise from studying the Niagara of words that justified the American War for Independence—together with all the words that circulated anxiously during the parlous years under the Confederation Congress—which rose to a great flood in the period 1787 to 1790 in . . . . Continue Reading »

Saving Ecumenism from Itself

The Oberlin conference on The Nature of the Unity We Seek, which met fifty years ago, in September 1957, marked an important stage in the ecumenical movement. For the first time, the churches in North America in large numbers committed themselves to the quest for Christian unity. The composition of . . . . Continue Reading »

Briefly Noted 210

Benedict XVI: The Man Who Was Ratzinger by michael s. rose spence, 182 pages, $22.95 The author of Goodbye, Good Men, a scathing and much discussed account of homosexuality in American seminaries, provides a frequently astute evaluation of what might be expected from the new pontificate. Rose’s . . . . Continue Reading »

Conscience and Authority

Nothing is more common in life than a seeming tension between the freedom of individuals and the authority of communities and their designated leaders. From individual citizens who must set aside their own desires and obey laws they think unwise, to athletes who must subordinate their individual . . . . Continue Reading »

The Next President

Nat Hentoff From the beginning, so very long ago, of the 2008 presidential campaign, many of the horde of self-proclaimed independent journalists reported that the Democrats were strategically moving toward the center, seeking some sort of common ground even with pro-lifers. Yet, when the Supreme . . . . Continue Reading »

Why Nigeria Matters

More than ten thousand Nigerians have lost their lives in communal unrest since 1999. One incident in Kaduna State alone claimed more than two thousand lives. And in the 2006 riots that erupted across the world over the Danish cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad, Nigeria had more of its citizens . . . . Continue Reading »

Spending the Future

The Legitimacy of ­Philanthropic Foundations: United States and European Perspectives edited by kenneth prewitt et al. russell sage foundation, 294 pages, $45 The Foundation: A Great American Secret by joel l. fleishman publicaffairs, 341 pages, $27.95 When you give alms,” Jesus says in the . . . . Continue Reading »

Written in Stone

The Law of God: The Philosophical History of an Idea by rémi brague university of chicago, 336 pages, $35 Rémi Brague’s latest book is a learned and meticulously documented exposition of the notion of divine law, from the Greeks through the founding documents of Judaism, Christianity, and . . . . Continue Reading »

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