Christine Norvell

About Christine Norvell

Christine Norvell is Senior Contributor at The Imaginative Conservative. A classical Christian educator, she is a graduate of Faulkner University's Great Books program, from which she earned a Master's degree in Humanities. Mrs. Norvell is also the author of Till We Have Faces: A Reading Companion and writes weekly at her website christinenorvell.com.

The Land, War, and Knowing Oneself: Willa Cather’s “One of Ours”

By |2020-02-13T10:38:34-06:00February 12th, 2020|Categories: Books, Christine Norvell, Fiction, Imagination, Literature, Senior Contributors|

After publishing her pioneer trilogy and numerous short stories, Willa Cather turned her writer’s craft to the effects of World War I with One of Ours (1922). A Pulitzer winner, it is often touted as a moving story of war, glory, and martyrdom. Critics responded that it was clichéd, recycling a sappy tale of [...]

Saint Augustine on Figurative Language in Scripture

By |2020-02-09T02:20:00-06:00February 8th, 2020|Categories: Christianity, Christine Norvell, Culture, Education, Religion, Senior Contributors, St. Augustine, Theology|

It’s true that when trying to understanding Scripture we need to establish an analysis of concrete terms. But if we aren’t careful, we just might explain away the beauty of descriptive language the Bible. Saint Augustine of Hippo encountered the same issue, and not just among his youngest students. In humanities coursework, we often [...]

The Fickle Moll Flanders

By |2020-01-17T02:51:41-06:00January 16th, 2020|Categories: Books, Character, Christine Norvell, Fiction, Imagination, Literature, Senior Contributors|

In “The Fortunes and Misfortunes of the Famous Moll Flanders,” Daniel Defoe relates the life story of an English adventuress and her exploits, portraying Moll’s life in such authentic detail that the readers can easily see themselves in her position. However, while reading, we must keep in mind a question: Is Moll’s story a [...]

Five New Classical Solo Albums for Gifting

By |2019-12-18T16:05:30-06:00December 19th, 2019|Categories: Audio/Video, Christmas, Gifts for Imaginative Conservatives, Music|

So many classical solo albums released this year.... I have five unique choices as gift recommendations for Christmas, comprising two cellos, two violins, and one piano. 1. I became aware of my first choice in late spring thanks to reader Frida Peeple. After reading my essay on Vivaldi’s cello concertos, she mentioned Croatian-Slovenian Luka Šulić’s [...]

Nine Great Christmas Reads

By |2019-12-11T14:00:38-06:00December 11th, 2019|Categories: Books, Christine Norvell, Christmas, Gifts for Imaginative Conservatives, Imagination, Literature, Senior Contributors|

Christmas reads can be described in pairs it seems—single stories and collections, old and new, for readers young and old. You may have a few of these on your shelves, or you may be looking for gift ideas, a way to invest in the imagination, in the heart, or both. […]

Mortimer Adler & the Context of an Educational Philosophy

By |2019-11-29T12:25:56-06:00November 28th, 2019|Categories: Books, Christine Norvell, Education, Liberal Arts, Mortimer Adler, Senior Contributors|

Robert Woods’s “Mortimer Adler: The Paideia Way of Classical Education” embodies the life and educational philosophy of one education reformer. Though intended to be informative, most chapters are akin to an educator’s devotional, leaving the teacher inspired to be a more thoughtful and focused Christian tutor. Mortimer Adler: The Paideia Way of Classical Education, by [...]

Who Is Alien? Science Fiction Shorts by Updike and Klein

By |2019-11-14T13:01:27-06:00November 14th, 2019|Categories: Christine Norvell, Fiction, Imagination, Literature, Senior Contributors|

Many authors use imagery to create atmosphere, and in short fiction, that efficient imagery is vital. It may be a particular environment for their characters, but in the case of science fiction, it is also an ample tool of criticism, one in this case that has a lingering bite. […]

The Witches of “Macbeth”: A Weyward Translation

By |2019-10-30T17:42:37-05:00October 30th, 2019|Categories: Christine Norvell, Halloween, Imagination, Literature, Senior Contributors, Tragedy, William Shakespeare|

Enter three sisters as thunder and lightning clash above. Their very presence inspires both fear and wonder of the unknown. William Shakespeare’s broad audience of commoners, merchants, and nobility all readily acknowledge their supernatural presence, the stuff of superstition. But what was Shakespeare’s intent for their appearance? What are they? Imagine a smoking cauldron [...]

How Edgar Allan Poe Ensured That Gothic Stories Will Never Die

By |2019-10-06T22:47:52-05:00October 6th, 2019|Categories: Christine Norvell, Edgar Allan Poe, Fiction, Imagination, Literature, Senior Contributors|

At the same time that writers were bringing depth of character to the gothic setting in the 19th century, Edgar Allan Poe revitalized the genre in mid-century America. Suddenly Tales of Horror had a distinctly American flair and a surprising psychological depth. This nuance captivated readers then and still does today. Two hundred and [...]

Horace’s Humanity

By |2019-09-27T14:16:42-05:00September 27th, 2019|Categories: Christine Norvell, Imagination, Literature, Poetry, Senior Contributors|

Like songs today, Horace’s odes were about anyone and anything that struck the poet’s fancy. Some, for instance, praise his patron, while others eviscerate noted women or men for their immoral and feckless behavior. His subjects appear innumerable, but they do share one thing—the poet’s desire to be known. Son of a former slave, [...]

The Challenge of Goodness in George MacDonald’s “Sir Gibbie”

By |2019-08-29T11:20:52-05:00August 29th, 2019|Categories: Books, Charity, Christine Norvell, Fiction, Literature, Morality, Senior Contributors, Virtue|

In “Sir Gibbie,” George MacDonald shows us how goodness is not in action only, but also in the doer first. The virtuous person sees truly, judges rightly, and acts. It is the love of God within Gibbie that prompts him to do so. Sometimes you read a book that causes you to marvel at [...]

Emily Dickinson and Drinking All Summer Long

By |2019-08-14T21:49:54-05:00August 14th, 2019|Categories: Christine Norvell, Imagination, Literature, Nature, Poetry, Senior Contributors|

Emily Dickinson creates a simple buffet for our imagination in her nature and summer poems, but most especially in "I taste a liquor never brewed." And rather than being accosted by her “drunkenness,” I embrace her abandoned delight in the essence of summer. I taste a liquor never brewed – From Tankards scooped in Pearl [...]