They All Go Into the Dark: Martin Scorsese’s “The Irishman”

By |2020-02-07T16:05:52-06:00February 7th, 2020|Categories: Culture, Dwight Longenecker, Film, Senior Contributors|

Martin Scorsese is a master filmmaker. Believing a film can be an art form on a level with music, dance, and literature, the one-time seminarian director wrestles with themes of free will and the unforeseen consequences of sin in his latest work, “The Irishman.” Martin Scorsese recently criticized Hollywood’s current cash cow—the comic book [...]

Glenn Arbery’s Southern Gothic

By |2020-01-31T22:21:39-06:00January 31st, 2020|Categories: Books, Dwight Longenecker, Fiction, Glenn Arbery, Imagination, Literature, Senior Contributors|

Glenn Arbery, in “Bearings and Distances,” uses bizarre humor, well-drawn characters, a wider landscape, and unexpected twists to expand the reach of Southern Gothic to critique more widespread contagions of modernity: the superficiality of academia, the hypocrisy of conventional religion, the sour legacy of slavery, the suffocating spiral of promiscuity, and the terror of [...]

With Bright Wings: George Weigel’s “The Irony of Modern Catholic History”

By |2020-01-25T22:11:25-06:00January 25th, 2020|Categories: Books, Catholicism, Christianity, Culture, Dwight Longenecker, History, Modernity, Religion, Senior Contributors|

The Christian Church’s ongoing struggle with modernity is unavoidable. How does a two-thousand-year-old religion, with roots even further into antiquity, adapt to a world not only technologically astonishing, but philosophically post-Christian, totally materialistic, and indifferent towards God? George Weigel answers this question in “The Irony of Modern Catholic History.” The Irony of Modern Catholic [...]

The Rise of Barbie and Rambo

By |2020-01-09T09:57:27-06:00January 9th, 2020|Categories: Culture, Culture War, Dwight Longenecker, Feminism, History, Senior Contributors|

Signs within the developing culture from the 1950s indicated, even then, a new confusion about sexual identity. From the dawn of time a man was defined as a father, or potential father. A woman was a mother, or potential mother. The whole delicate dance of courtship and sexual relationships circled around the undeniable link [...]

The Magi and the Obstinacy of Belief

By |2020-01-05T20:21:13-06:00January 5th, 2020|Categories: Books, Christianity, Culture, Dwight Longenecker, History, Religion, Senior Contributors|

The refusal to consider the possibility that the Magi were historical figures and not mythical magicians reflects the bias of both modernists and conservative believers. For Saint Matthew’s Gospel to actually be true rocks both their boats. My friend Sir Colin Humphreys wrote a book some time ago called The Miracles of Exodus. Sir [...]

Prophecies, Predictions, and Prognostications

By |2019-12-29T22:54:23-06:00December 30th, 2019|Categories: Christianity, Culture, Dwight Longenecker, Senior Contributors, Wisdom|

We are all fascinated by the future and imprisoned by the past—especially when “there is distress of nations and perplexity”—but we needn’t resort to occult tomfoolery or fall under the spell of a seer, preacher, or latter-day doomsday prophet. Instead the answer is to dwell in the present moment. The preachers of my Evangelical [...]

The Scandal of Christmas

By |2019-12-22T03:34:19-06:00December 21st, 2019|Categories: Christianity, Christmas, Culture, Dwight Longenecker, Religion, Senior Contributors, Theology|

The Nativity is an outrage. God who is outside of time should not step into time. God the omnipotent should not become a helpless child. God the all-knowing should not empty himself and lock himself into the limitations of mortality. However, it is the incredible outrage of it all that gives one pause. After [...]

Primal Screams: How the Sexual Revolution Created Identity Politics

By |2019-12-13T16:42:27-06:00December 7th, 2019|Categories: Books, Conservatism, Dwight Longenecker, Politics, Senior Contributors|

Puzzled by the sudden surge of identity politics, Mary Eberstadt traces its genesis to the sexual revolution. By doing so, she addresses the “primal screams” of faceless, lonely people grabbing at an identity like a shipwrecked person clutching at flotsam. Primal Screams: How the Sexual Revolution Created Identity Politics, by Mary Eberstadt (192 pages, [...]

Marilyn Monroe and the Mother Goddess

By |2019-11-20T12:22:52-06:00November 22nd, 2019|Categories: Culture, Dwight Longenecker, Film, Modernity, Morality, Senior Contributors|

Marilyn Monroe was the American version of the great mother goddess—our Diana, Astarte, Ishtar, Isis. But for the pagan, the Mother Goddess stood not only for sex, but also for life, fertility, prosperity, and all things abundant. Being an American and living on the precipice of the sexual revolution, Marilyn was the icon and [...]

Return of the Small Gods?

By |2019-11-16T21:29:54-06:00November 16th, 2019|Categories: Books, Civil Society, Conservatism, Dwight Longenecker, Relativism, Senior Contributors, Western Civilization, Western Tradition|

Rusty Reno’s recent book, Return of the Strong Gods is an excellent explanation of the roots of relativism. The short version is that two world wars left Western civilization with a huge societal case of post-traumatic stress disorder. With heads in hands, the thinkers concluded that we kill one another because of dogma. We say, [...]

Return of the Strong Gods

By |2019-11-09T22:04:01-06:00November 9th, 2019|Categories: Books, Culture, Dwight Longenecker, Faith, Family, Senior Contributors, Western Civilization, Worldview|

R.R. Reno in “Return of the Strong Gods” argues that we need a return to the pillars that represent classic human values: the home, the country, and the religion. He calls for true patriotism rather than nationalism, marriage and family instead of a sexual free-for-all, and historic Christianity instead of do-it-yourself “spirituality.” Return of [...]

The Return of the Native

By |2019-11-02T22:34:15-05:00November 2nd, 2019|Categories: Catholicism, Christianity, Conservatism, Dwight Longenecker, Senior Contributors|

The essential error of the modernist theologians who pushed their agenda at the Amazonian synod is that they have fallen for the myth of the noble savage. But both the noble savage and the urban savage are simplistic generalities: They express a truth and a lie at the same time. The recent Amazonian synod [...]

The Accidental Marriage

By |2019-10-25T11:04:29-05:00October 25th, 2019|Categories: Books, Dwight Longenecker, Homosexual Unions, Imagination, Marriage, Senior Contributors|

Roger B. Thomas’ novels are refreshing because they are not overtly religious. Instead, as in “The Accidental Marriage,” he creates compelling tales of real people struggling with the pressures created by the decay of morality, the decline of religion, and the desert of relativism. The Accidental Marriage: A Novel, by Roger B. Thomas (219 [...]