The Nightstand

Rise Up, O Saints, and Plant Gardens

Jake Meador’s In Search of the Common Good: Christian Fidelity in a Fractured World is a remarkably successful attempt to bring together the core teachings of Christianity and the community-centered practices of an economic life less dependent on global capitalism.

Puppets and Portraits: Two Victorians

In “The Dreams of Mrs. Flintwinch thicken,” a short chapter of Charles Dickens’ Little Dorrit (1857), the kind-hearted Arthur Clennam visits his childhood home....

Creator as Creature: Rowan Williams on Christ and Creation

Christ the Heart of Creation renders fruitful the richness in, and the virtue of, the Christological grammar that rules faithful speech and thought about the person and nature of Jesus Christ.

Blessed Are the Working Poor

I am in love with my neighborhood because I am in love with the people, how resilient and complicated they are, and how they teach me how wrong I have been about the world. They have proven to me what Jesus said in his most famous sermon, the one on the mount: “blessed are the poor in spirit, for they shall see God.”

Infinite Baseball review

The official scorekeeper for my sixth-grade baseball team was our catcher’s mom. Sometimes she couldn’t be there, and it would fall to our coach...

Without Athens, There is No R.E.M.: The Loss of Local Cultures

In high school, I had a friend who simply loathed Michael Stipe. This was in the late nineties, at the tail end...

The Wonderfully (if Perhaps Insufficiently) Radical Bill McKibben

I've been a fan of Bill McKibben's writings for close to 30 years. That doesn't mean I've agreed with, or even enjoyed,...

What Are People For? Control or Love?

The arguments that Deneen and Shatzer advance are really two sides of the same coin; as one interpreter of Marshall McLuhan put it, “We make our tools, and then our tools make us.”

Time and Place in Eugene Vodolazkin’s Imagination

We occupants of the Porch can profitably read Vodolazkin in light of our own concern to acknowledge human limitations and find ways to live well and more fully in our own communities.

The Most Polarized Era Ever?

In selecting reading material, the average reader might not immediately reach for a book about Congress in the nineteenth century. That would be a...