Four Book Recommendations for the Close of the Year

By |2020-11-23T17:09:59-06:00November 23rd, 2020|Categories: Books, Gifts for Imaginative Conservatives, Lee Cheek, Politics, Senior Contributors|

While 2021 will doubtless be an improvement over 2020, some grounding in the fundamental nature of the political order will prove useful. We can dispense with the contemporary political studies for a moment and perhaps consider the higher potentialities of politics. Here are a few books worth reading and giving as gifts: […]

Prayer, Beauty, and Civilization

By |2020-11-21T10:16:29-06:00November 21st, 2020|Categories: Art, Beauty, Books, Christianity, Civilization, Culture, Imagination, Michael De Sapio, Senior Contributors|

In our zeal to articulate how Christianity has shaped civilization, we are apt to neglect the specific role of prayer. The good, the true, and the beautiful fostered by our civilization have been initiated and sustained by prayer. If one does not pray, what measure of human cultivation is one missing? Art and Prayer: [...]

The Costs of Truth-Telling: Rod Dreher’s “Live Not By Lies”

By |2020-11-06T09:56:40-06:00November 4th, 2020|Categories: Books, Christianity|

Rod Dreher's "Live Not by Lies" is based on the testimonies of dissidents in Eastern Europe and Russia as to how they survived the hard totalitarianism of communism. Mr. Dreher attempts to apply their lessons to what he claims is our growing American soft totalitarianism. Live Not By Lies, by Rod Dreher (Sentinel, 2020, 256 [...]

“It Was All a Lie”: Stuart Stevens and Trump Derangement Syndrome

By |2020-11-02T16:24:41-06:00November 2nd, 2020|Categories: American Republic, Books, Donald Trump, Politics, Presidency, Republicans|

At the heart of Stuart Stevens’ “It Was All A Lie” are, ironically, lies about Donald Trump.  Though he relentlessly attacks the president’s character, the author actually exposes his own heart by way of offering a mea culpa for his long-time association with and advocacy for a political party that he now deems to [...]

Death and Transfiguration

By |2020-10-05T12:00:21-05:00November 1st, 2020|Categories: Books, Christianity, Death, Hope, Michael De Sapio, Philosophy, Senior Contributors|

Dealing with the topic of death, Dietrich von Hildebrand’s consoling book “Jaws of Death: Gate of Heaven” shines both in its “dark” and “light” halves, illuminating the eternal duality of human life and helping to reconcile its painful contradictions. Life is not a journey of diminishing returns, ending in darkness and the grave, but [...]

“A Single Life”

By |2020-10-23T13:38:24-05:00October 22nd, 2020|Categories: Books, Fiction, Love, Marriage, Religion|

Though written before COVID-19, the Black Lives Matter movement, and the agitated lead-up to the 2020 election, Daniel Goodman’s novel, “A Single Life,” resonates with the pain of increased isolation, racial tension, and alienation as Eli Newman treads the arduous road to romance and struggles with his observant Jewish life. A Single Life, by [...]

The “Eumenides”: Patriotism & Moderated Modernity

By |2020-10-06T22:17:07-05:00October 4th, 2020|Categories: Books, Classics, E.B., Eva Brann, Featured, Great Books, Literature, St. John's College, Timeless Essays|

The “Eumenides” is not a tragedy of the unresolvable impasse, of the unavoidable fatality. It is a “pragma,” an affair practically handled, whose outcome is not all-round cleansing by devastation, but a future of good daily living. Aeschylus invests this drama of sweet reason, of moderation triumphant, with exhilarating solemnity and participatory splendor. Aeschylus’ Eumenides [...]

From Highest Heaven Handed Down

By |2020-09-28T16:33:34-05:00September 28th, 2020|Categories: Books, Christianity, Natural Law, Philosophy, St. Thomas Aquinas|

Russell Hittinger’s “The First Grace” deals mightily with the crisis of our time—namely, the failure of those who make, enjoy, and judge the constitutionality of laws to appreciate the dire consequences of denying the place of natural-law considerations in the ordering of public life. The First Grace: Rediscovering the Natural Law in a Post-Christian [...]

America Must Return to the Noble Traditions of Her Founders

By |2020-09-23T12:45:12-05:00September 27th, 2020|Categories: American Founding, American Republic, Books, Constitution, Declaration of Independence, History, Politics, Slavery|

That it is the founding principles themselves to which we can turn to recover from the great evils of slavery, of the loss of virtue and moral standard, and of grotesque dehumanization should be a measure of the gratitude we owe to our Founding Fathers for their magnificent achievement. Robert R. Reilly is the [...]

Understanding William Faulkner

By |2020-09-25T16:33:48-05:00September 24th, 2020|Categories: Books, Cleanth Brooks, Imagination, John Crowe Ransom, Literature, South|

In the forties and fifties, the most influential literary quarterlies in America featured “new criticism,” a brand of formalism that never succumbed to the absolute relativism of the deconstructionists. One of their foremost practitioners was Cleanth Brooks, who devoted himself to interpreting and popularizing the work of one of America’s greatest but most difficult [...]

The Demolition of the Western Mind

By |2020-09-12T11:55:30-05:00September 10th, 2020|Categories: Books, Catholicism, Sexuality|

Our only hope to counter our freefall into nihilism and relativism is a return to reality—not the false reality of the materialists, but the true reality of those who worship the Word. The only way to become real, as Anthony Esolen says in “Sex and the Unreal City,” is to join ourselves “to Christ, [...]

The Untold Story of Japan’s Atomic Bomb

By |2020-09-02T23:51:17-05:00September 2nd, 2020|Categories: Books, World War II|

Had the Japanese succeeded in their last-ditch atomic effort, the world’s history might have been very different. By August 1945, Japan had abandoned the idea of bombing mainland America. Instead, Japanese leaders were planning to use what atomic weapons they could produce on the Allied invasion fleet that they believed would soon be off its [...]

“The Cross and the Lynching Tree”: Race and Religion

By |2020-08-29T10:56:38-05:00August 29th, 2020|Categories: Books, Christianity, Culture, Dwight Longenecker, Equality, Religion, Senior Contributors|

James Cone’s “The Cross and the Lynching Tree” is a passionate and excellent contribution to the discussion of race and religion from the perspective of African-American believers and should help white Christians to see the world from the viewpoint of their black brothers and sisters. The Cross and the Lynching Tree, by James Cone [...]

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