October 28, 2010
To Change the World 3: Between Presumption and Hope
What’s the central dilemma for Christians who want to change the world? James Davison Hunter answers: Even though populism is organic to American Christianity, what actually brings about change instead is the combination of powerful institutions, networks, interests and symbols. And when it comes to the latter, American Christianity is decidedly on the outside looking in.
The ten biggest independent foundations give away billions; the ten biggest religious foundations give away millions (pp. 82-83). Professors at Christian colleges have twice the teaching load of their counterparts at elite and research universities—so they are at a huge disadvantage in any ambition to lead their academic disciplines (p. 86).
Then he quits preachin’ and starts meddlin’.Continue reading "To Change the World 3: Between Presumption and Hope"
Posted by Andy Le Peau at 7:27 AM
October 26, 2010
October 20, 2010
To Change the World 2: The Untold Story of Christianity
Christianity has long been “Exhibit A” of populist movements changing the world. Two thousand years of history clearly show these people on the margins transforming their societies through the power of the gospel. Right? Why then is James Davison Hunter’s To Change the World so negative about the ability of a widespread impulse in ordinary people to transform society?Continue reading "To Change the World 2: The Untold Story of Christianity"
Posted by Andy Le Peau at 7:33 AM
October 13, 2010
To Change the World 1: The Limits of Popular Opinion
Evangelicals want to change the world. So do Episcopalians, Lutherans and Catholics. They all fall in the tradition of Thomas Jefferson, who thought that if we can educate people—inform them, change their minds—then freedom will flourish and good will prevail.
They’re all wrong. James Davison Hunter says he knows why in To Change the World.Continue reading "To Change the World 1: The Limits of Popular Opinion"
Posted by Andy Le Peau at 7:43 AM
October 6, 2010
The Man's Man of Letters
My latest excursion in literary tourism took me just fourteen miles from our offices in Westmont when I recently visited the birthplace of Ernest Hemingway with some friends. The house in Oak Park, Illinois, has largely been restored to its original condition.
Here young Ernest joined in prayers with his grandfather Abba, a Civil War hero for the Union who led a “colored brigade.” Here he was entertained, along with his siblings by the stories spun by his father. Here he heard his mother, a veteran of New York’s Metropolitan Opera, offer music lessons. And so pieces of the influence on Ernest as a writer begin to emerge.Continue reading "The Man's Man of Letters"
Posted by Andy Le Peau at 7:46 AM