“Birds, Bricklayers, and Baseball.” Sam Edgin reviews Stanley Hauerwas’s new book, The Character of Virtue: Letters to a Godson, which is comprised of 16 letters, each written on subsequent anniversaries of his godson’s baptism.
“Giving Up on Baseball.” Alan Jacobs mourns that the rise of sabermetrics have made baseball “much more rational, but not near so much like a game.” It’s an interesting essay, but I’m not sure I agree; I think it’s the pace-of-play rule changes (those already instantiated and those under discussion) that most threaten the game of baseball.
“Poet’s Corner.” Malcolm Guite writes about his hexagonal writer’s hut where he has a copy of Wendell Berry’s “How to Be a Poet” pinned on the wall. Poems don’t always come to him when he sits here, but this space helps reorient his life, making it more open to the poetic muse: “the making and keeping of spaces in our outer lives somehow clears paths and opens spaces in our inner lives.”
“The $247 Trillion Global Debt Bomb.” US debt is a looming problem, and Robert Samuelson argues that out-of-control debt is also a global problem.
“Privilege.” Matthew Crawford asks some probing questions about the “fuzzy indignation” that privilege seems to provoke.
“Amusing Ourselves to Death—A Review.” Andrew Spencer reviews Neil Postman’s classic 33 years after its original publication date and finds that Postman’s analysis was quite prescient. Having just re-read Postman’s classic myself this summer, I certainly concur.
“Why We Need Loome Theological Booksellers.” Jake Meador elaborates on the goods that well-stocked bookstores provide.
“Do Liberals Hate the Middle Class?” Paul Baumann responds to a recent book by Fred Siegel and outlines the inadequacies of certain forms of liberalism: “if choice is regarded as the ultimate and defining liberal value, what people choose cannot be questioned,” and this inability to critique others’ choices is, unsurprisingly, a problem. Nonetheless, Baumann defends liberalism while rejecting its excesses.
“Your Other Body.” B. D. McClay argues that our inevitable interdependence with others is not just a source of guilt and complicity, but can also result in beauty and redemption.
“America’s Factory Towns, Once Solidly Blue, Are Now a GOP Haven.” Bob Davis and Dante Chinni report on the drastic political shifts that have occurred in America’s manufacturing communities over the past twenty-five years.