11/01/1985

In response to Crevecoeur's classic question, "What, then, is the American, this new man?" John Courtney Murray offered a classic answer: the American is the bearer of a proposition. At the beginning of We Hold These Truths—whose silver anniversary of publication we mark this year—Murray noted that, "It is classic American doctrine, immortally asserted by [...]

In response to Crevecoeur's classic question, "What, then, is the American, this new man?" John Courtney Murray offered a classic answer: the American is the bearer of a proposition. At the beginning of We Hold These Truths—whose silver anniversary of publication we mark this year—Murray noted that, "It is classic American doctrine, immortally asserted by [...]

Mar del Plata, Rio de la Plata, the name of the country itself, suggest wealth, dreams of fabulous riches, but it would be hard now to find an Argentine with the hopes of a conquistador. Dickens and Mrs. Trollope wrote books on the USA after flying visits so perhaps I need not apologize for daring [...]

Economics begins, as Rousseau said of political philosophy, by "taking men as they are and laws as they might be" Religion, on the other hand, commands men to "Be perfect, as your heavenly father is perfect" (Mt. 5:48). This creates a tension between the perspectives of the theologian and the economist. Their respective principles can [...]

One year ago it was Archbishop John O'Connor. Now it is Cardinal John O'Connor. But in the minds of the American secular establishment, it will always be arch-villain John O'Connor. Just a year ago, Archbishop O'Connor took a strong public stance on two issues, each of which crucially affected the Catholic faith. In each case, [...]

Even non-believers have been fascinated with the internal life of the Catholic Church over the past quarter century, although the reasons for that fascination are far from consoling to a believer. At the beginning of the pontificate of John XXIII most of that fascination stemmed from curiosity whether the Church would indeed make those adjustments [...]

Paris, Texas. Written by Sam Shepard. Directed by Wim Wenders. Road Movies (Berlin) and Argos Films (Paris). There really is a Paris, Texas. It's a town in the northeast part of the state, near the Oklahoma border. But to Travis Henderson, seated in the back of a rented car and staring bemusedly at a frayed [...]

At supper at Xavier Hall at the University of San Francisco last summer, I was talking with Father William Monihan, a man who knows as much about books as anyone I know and whose annual symposia at USF are so stimulating. Somehow, he had just come into contact with Eric Voegelin and was, as we [...]

It is said that Paganism is a religion of joy and Christianity of sorrow; it would be just as easy to prove that paganism is pure sorrow and Christianity pure joy. Such conflicts mean nothing and lead nowhere. Everything human must have in it both joy and sorrow; the only matter of interest is the [...]

I am getting more than tired of hearing that "Catholic education" is an oxymoron. It used to be you only heard this as a snide remark passed along by an aficionado of another "kind" of school—a private non-sectarian school, or a land grant university. Catholics, you see, were so afraid of creeping secularism (read modernism [...]

Despite the attempts by the media to make Karen Ann Quinlan a "heroine" for the right to die movement, it may very well be that this unfortunate woman was the victim of medical abandonment, or even "sentimental homicide." For there are troubling ethical questions about her lapse into unconsciousness. There are ethical questions about her [...]

Notes on Culture in the New Nicaragua Editor's Note: This remarkable document, by Nicaraguan poet, essayist, historian and journalist Pablo Antonio Cuadra, was published in August in Vuelta, the distinguished Mexican journal of letters and culture edited by the world-famous poet, anthropologist and diplomat Octavio Paz. The translation from Spanish is by Mark Falcoff. In [...]

In Milwaukee, they say the second draft is better than the first. So it is with the second draft of the Catholic bishops' pastoral letter on the U.S. economy. The bishops cut 20 pages (of 112) from the original draft, made some key rearrangements, clarified some disputed concepts, and helpfully altered the document's tone. I [...]

Comments on the Central American Policy of the U.S. Catholic Conference EDITOR'S NOTE: Catholicism in Crisis has obtained from Nicaragua an advisory (in Spanish), prepared earlier in 1985 by Nicaraguan citizens for the bishops of Nicaragua, in reply to the memorandum on the policies of the United States Catholic Conference towards Central America. The USCC [...]

Two wise women, from different eras and backgrounds, once commented on the state of marriage. One was Jane Austen, who never goes out of style. The other was Gertrud von le Fort, a German baroness who has been out of style for at least 25 years. Ironically, neither women ever married, yet each one understood [...]

MENU