2012-11-09

Date: 
Friday, November 9, 2012

A Beggar to the End

Invective seldom harms the reputation of a writer. “A Frenchman must be always talking,” Samuel Johnson said, “whether he knows anything of the matter or not.” We...

Out of Step

To have a career reflecting on ethics requires three skills: to know oneself, to understand the culture in which one’s life and one’s profession are embedded, and...

The Burial

There’s nothing quite like watching what used to be your brother being lowered into a hole in the Illinois earth to remind you that every moment is a universe far...

Song of Himself

Louis Zukofsky wrote that “the test of poetry is the range of pleasure it affords as sight, sound, and intellection.” “Tonight,” the first poem in Rowan Ricardo...

Contested Norms

In a recent New York Times piece, the philosopher Colin McGinn suggested that the academic discipline of philosophy faces a sort of identity crisis. Those outside...

Taxes & prosperity, single-issue politics

Blunt InstrumentsJames Kloppenberg’s article “Two Cities, Two Americas” (October 26) is refreshing in its optimism that America’s elected leaders might soon be able...

Out the Front Door

It’s hardly news that in recent years some priests have been cast out of the church and defrocked. Some are in the middle of litigation. Some are in prison. Some...

At The Catholic Worker House: 1968

Flitting & chattering to herself, someone’s mother hovers aboveher bowl of soup with a thin, conspiratorial rectitude, the bowlloaded to the very edge of a...

On Earth, Not in Heaven

This book, the eminent political theorist Michael Walzer writes in its acknowledgments, “has been many years in the making.” He dates its beginnings to a seminar in...

Fire Sale

Perhaps each of the seven deadly sins must have its day, politically. “Lust is good” might have been the rallying cry of the 1960s and ’70s counterculture. Twenty-...

Hooch & Hokum

In one respect, Paul Thomas Anderson stands apart from even the best of living American directors: he is both a fabricator of spectacle and a shrewd psychologist....

Bad Influence

Rep. Paul Ryan has long enjoyed a reputation as a wonk’s wonk. Here was a Republican politician happy to engage in substantive conversation about tax policy, debt,...