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NOTE: The following post is from our good colleague, Dr. David Rothman, an accomplished scholar and poet, who continues to produce works of wonder and humor under the inspiration of the Muse. My title comes from the title of an enigmatic late poem by Richard Hugo (1923-’82), a title also used for his posthumously published Collected Poems (1984). The phrase has always...

One of the many fringe benefits of friendship is the sharing of probing thoughts and the artful expression of ideas.  Just this morning, a good friend texted me today’s article by David Brooks (New York Times), which provided me with some real hope, based on specific developments in the world of punditry and public discourse. According...

While it may be considered uncouth to bring up politics and religion at the family reunion, there are strong reasons to believe that our political regime benefits from the presence of active religious communities.   As the First Amendment to our Constitution details, citizens of this nation are granted the freedoms of religious expression, speech and the...

This past week, I heard Kenneth L. Woodward interviewed on his 2016 book, Getting Religion: Faith, Culture, and Politics from the Age of Eisenhower to the Era of Obama (Penguin Random House). I was intrigued by Woodward’s vast experience as the former religion editor of Newsweek, where he went from observations in Omaha to visiting...

Late this spring I turned on my webcam to teach students who had come to Furman University to live and study together in an Engaged Living Program called “Politics and the Human Soul.”  This particularly tight cohort—who typically met up before class and proceeded en masse to the seminar room—was now scattered all over the...

One of the many fringe benefits of friendship is the sharing of probing thoughts and the artful expression of ideas.  Just this morning, a good friend texted me today’s article by David Brooks (New York Times), which provided me with some real hope, based on specific developments in the world of punditry and public discourse. According...

Today's guest contributor is Dr. Colleen Sheehan of Arizona State University. Dr. Sheehan reminds us that there is much political sense and a great deal of civic sensibility found in the novels of Jane Austen. Sheehan seems comfortable suggesting that Austen has more political insights than the vast majority of today’s pundits--if only they would...

Today's guest contributor is Dr. Colleen Sheehan of Arizona State University. Dr. Sheehan reminds us that there is much political sense and a great deal of civic sensibility found in the novels of Jane Austen. Sheehan seems comfortable suggesting that Austen has more political insights than the vast majority of today’s pundits--if only they would...