Death and Dying

The Cost of an Obsession

The unseemly love affair of some American politicians with the death penalty is bad for justice and bad for our country's standing in the world. It inflicts a...

Tormented Witness

The life of faith finds an enduring metaphor in the notion of the soul’s journey to God. Consider the pilgrim-poet of Dante’s Divine Comedy, who successfully...

Dignity & the End of Life

Physician-assisted suicide (PAS) and euthanasia have long been the redheaded stepchildren of the prolife movement. They are dutifully included in the litany of life...

Mother Knew Best

After my mother died three years ago (see “Spare Every Expense, Except One,” October 10, 2008), my sister Lucy kept discovering interesting things she had left...

Clouds of Unknowing

Growing up in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, one knew that tornadoes weren’t just things that happened to other people. This disquieting knowledge came in the form of regular...

A Kind of Justice

“Justice has been done,” President Barack Obama told the world in announcing that U.S. commandos had raided a compound in Pakistan and killed Osama bin Laden,...

A Death to Celebrate?

During the Middle Ages—the historical context for the rise of what would come to be known as the “just war” tradition—violence under any circumstance was deemed a...

Channeling History

If you’re a fan of the History Channel, you’ll feel right at home watching Robert Redford’s recreation of Abraham Lincoln’s murder near the beginning of The...

Pass the Cudgel

We’re still debating whether what we’re doing in Libya can rightly be described as war, though bombs dropped amid an “intervention” are just as deadly. But where’s...

Trading Places

Jane Gross’s book on caring for aging parents is both an invaluable guide and a terrifying read, a book that tells you things that you didn’t even know you didn’t...

Self-destruct Sequence

According to Ron Rosenbaum, when the Cold War ended—and especially after September 11 raised the specter of a nuclear attack by terrorists—people “succumbed to a...

Kashima & the Catfish

The apartment building in Chiba where my wife Keiko and I have spent most of our adult lives and where our four children grew up looks across the bay to Tokyo and...
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