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The Luftwaffe Over Liverpool

The air raids of May 1941 stand out in the memory because they were so ferocious. The norm—insofar as there was a norm—fell into a more predictable quasi-routine.

The River Runs On

Norman Maclean understood loving and losing in the light of Christian faith. But he couldn’t quite trust Christianity’s promise of redemption. Tragedy was his theme.

Top Books of 2015

Out of the more than eighty book reviews Commonweal published in 2015, these twelve were the most read, discussed, and shared on social media.

A Shattered Mosaic

Considering how religiously diverse and culturally cosmopolitan its cities were before WWI, few could have foreseen today's calamity for the Middle Eastern region.

'Once in a Great City'

What fascinates Maraniss about Detroit more than its ruin is how central its story is to the broader course of U.S. history—Motown, the local Mob, the auto industry.

'Utopia, Limited'

Anahid Nersessian argues that Romanticism dramatizes the “desirability of constraint.” Her book on how British Romantics imagined "utopia" powerfully does the same.

Bookmarks | Poetry, Poets & Sacredness

James Booth examines Philip Larkin’s life and work. Colm Tóibín writes on Elizabeth Bishop. James Wood looks at religious and secular modes of narration in novels.

Awakening

As a result of a recent vogue for feeling culturally embattled, the word “Christian” now is seen less as identifying an ethic, and more as identifying a demographic.
Jacques Maritain

Christian Human Rights

In "Christian Human Rights," Samuel Moyn concedes that the modern human-rights movement is untethered from its Christian origins. Is this something to worry about?

Battered Souls

Stone's characters were human, and humans screw up; there wasn’t much to do about that except to situate the culprits in clarifying narratives of moral scrutiny.

The Coup at Catholic University

Peter Mitchell's take on Charles Curran and the "dissident theologian" strike at Catholic University in 1967 presents a conspiracy so big it's literally incredible.

Religion Booknotes

The strangeness of Freeman’s title commands attention; Kaplan constructs a microhistory of religious conflict; Lipton presents a learned study; Manseau on diversity.
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