Art & Culture

Eleanor Fortescue Brickdale from The Book of Old English Songs & Ballads 2

Once upon a time in the Western world, exposure to “the beautiful” was an important element in the development and formation of men. The ideal man was also an educated man, and an educated man knew something about, and appreciated, good art, good music, good literature, and good taste (and perhaps also good wine). The [...]

Once upon a time in the Western world, exposure to “the beautiful” was an important element in the development and formation of men. The ideal man was also an educated man, and an educated man knew something about, and appreciated, good art, good music, good literature, and good taste (and perhaps also good wine). The [...]

Hollywood, still wet from the soaking it took from Noah, has headed for the desert with Moses in the new movie Exodus: Gods and Kings. Surely this time we have a foolproof crowd pleaser filled only with milk and honey? Or, instead, is it going to be a lot of grumbling at bitter herbs? The [...]

Lord Alfred Douglas, in a poem from the 1890s, euphemistically branded homosexual behavior as “the love that dare not speak its name.” In recent years, homosexual behavior has gotten quite vocal about itself, causing confusion over “love” and even “marriage.” Religion in general, however, and Judaism and especially Christianity in particular, have been muted—gagged might [...]

The headline was not unlike many that I see in my Twitter feed: Yale Black Men's Union Send Message “To My Unborn Son.” I follow a fair amount of Catholic priests, pro-life Christian writers, and disability advocates, so I honestly expected the accompanying story to be about a courageous campus protest by some idealistic young [...]

A multitude of people saw the YouTube video, or read the story in the news, about the actress who took part in a planned, secretly filmed ten-hour walk through Manhattan that—as expected—resulted in a substantial number of comments, catcalls, winks and what not from men she passed. The filming was arranged by an organization that [...]

Like other living things, human beings have a distinct nature as beings of a particular kind. We have conditions we try to bring about, conditions that help us thrive, and characteristic ways of acting, responding to events, and dealing with others. All these points are obvious. Nonetheless, if you mention human nature in public discussion [...]

Thanksgiving is rapidly competing with Christmas as a candidate holiday for the next cultural war. We know, of course, that December 25 is the holiday that dare not speak its name, having been transmogrified into “winter holiday” lest delicate ears be offended by “C-h-r-i-s-t-m-a-s.” Thanksgiving, so far, has managed to retain its name of religious [...]

Earlier this month, the BBC interviewed E.O. Wilson (a highly reputable emeritus Professor of Entomology at Harvard University) asking him about his differing views on natural selection with Richard Dawkins. He responded that: There is no dispute between me and Richard Dawkins and there never has been, because he’s a journalist, and journalists are people [...]

When we go to the cinema or rent a DVD, our motives are usually fairly simplistic: we seek to be entertained, and most likely we choose a movie because we are specifically in the mood for passive entertainment which requires little or no mental effort on our part. If you are like me, though, you [...]

Late nineteenth-century English Catholic politics may be characterized by the fluctuating party sympathies of John Henry Newman. Despite his identification with nineteenth-century liberalism, Newman supported the Tories in 1865: I have no great love of the Conservatives, as being Erastians of a type which I do not think you can admire—but I speak of them [...]

Bill Cosby is 77. He may well live another 5 years, but is unlikely to live more than 10 years. Still, there are no accounts suggesting diminished capacity for the bright, thoughtful Bill Cosby who has been a famous comedian and more recently a brave social commentator on failed fatherhood in black America. In his [...]

A culture is a way of living, a system of habit and attitude, an orientation toward life and the world, that is shared and basically taken for granted within a community. It arises naturally when people live together, since we are social beings who need common habits and understandings to live together happily and productively. [...]

Why are people who quit social media so amusing? After years of embroiled use, a bad break up, a nasty spat, a vague feeling of listlessness, another Luddite throws up his hands and renounces social media with—of all things—a tweet or a Facebook status: “Friends, I’m deactivating my account in a week. I can’t take [...]

Interstellar has blasted onto movie screens across the globe, and is going into orbit at the box office—$300, 000, 000, and counting. In addition, its critical acclaim seems to suggest that the movie event of the year has just landed. But, is it any good? Well, before we splash down, let’s look at the background. [...]

Recently, Alfred Hitchcock came back from the dead, and, in so doing, frightened a man "back into life." Let me explain. The headline ran as follows: "Hitchcock suspense clip helps detect awareness in patient in vegetative state!" A man had been in a coma for 16 years. The prognosis was not good, hope for his [...]

On Not Taking It Anymore

“Do not conform yourselves to this age.”   ∼ St. Paul, Letter to the Romans (12:2) Living in a world where much has been laid waste by forces hostile to faith and hope, the challenge becomes that of finding evidence for the things that one loves. Or simply going mad in the face of all [...]

Forgive me, Lord, if I use your words for an admonitory parable. You said to the Pharisees, “What man among you, having a hundred sheep, and learning that one of them has wandered into the wilderness, will not leave the ninety nine and go after the lost sheep? And when he has found it, will [...]

Problems are oftentimes more obvious than solutions. In a recent article, I wrote on the obstacle that Internet pornography introduces to masculine education by injuring the sense of wonder and the sacred. I recalled how the effects of this “drug” were ones that my old boarding-school headmaster was reticent to allow into the culture of [...]

The headmaster of the all-boys boarding school I attended when I was a teenager was always wary of admitting students to the academy that had been exposed to pornography. Among his reasons for this was that boys who had carnal knowledge—even on the level that pornography affords—very often found it an impediment in the process [...]

In spite of themselves, atheists can help to remind us of an important truth about God, that is, that he radically transcends the universe. It is God’s very transcendence that makes atheism possible, or at least more likely. If God were an item in the universe open to empirical investigation, presumably, there would be far [...]

Although the recent book by Fr. Maciej Zieba is titled Papal Economics: The Catholic Church on Democratic Capitalism, from Rerum Novarum to Caritas in Veritate, it is really not so much about papal economics as it is about papal political philosophy. Further, it is not about the Catholic Church’s teaching on democratic capitalism broadly speaking [...]

MENU