Week of June 14, 2009
A wunderkammer of discoveries, compiled by Comment and illuminated for our readers' edification and entertainment. We do not necessarily endorse the external content below.
Comment friends Rob and Kirstin Vander Giessen-Reitsma are touring Indiana, Wisconsin, Iowa, Nebraska, Illinois and Southern Ontario for the next six weeks on the Eat Well Food Tour, urging us to "consider the story you tell when you eat—is it consistent with the Good News? How might you learn to Eat Well, and allow food to feed your faith?"
James K.A. Smith's 2009 book from Eerdmans, The Devil Reads Derrida is a collection of occasional pieces on discipleship, the university, politics, the church, and movies. We recommend it with enthusiasm, and thank Jamie for his kind words about Comment in the Acknowledgements at the beginning of the book.
Cardus Senior Fellow Jonathan Chaplin writes in the UK Guardian on "States of secularism," arguing that exclusive secularism is both illiberal and anti-democratic, fuelling religious tensions and evoking latent ones. Meanwhile, Camille Paglia, an atheist and long-time cultural critic, unleashed a verbal firestorm of support for religion as the ground from which our greatest works of art have sprung and by which they are understood. The Royal Ontario Museum's "The Three New Commandments" was the occasion for the lecture.
. . . Finally, some of Cardus' opinions on the best way to spend a sunny summer evening:
"With the same people you spent a summer evening with the week before and the week before that, around a fire on that strip of beach nobody else knows about." —J.H.
For my money, the best way is on Central Park's Great Lawn, enjoying a picnic dinner your husband packed with a nice bottle of rose, listening to the New York Philharmonic perform, along with sixty thousand of your neighbours." —A.W.
"Sitting under the big tree in our Locke Street back garden, immersed in honey-coloured sunlight, reading, or having a lazy, meandering conversation about this and that, with a coffee or a beer at hand, listening to the happy neighbourhood noises coming in muffled across the fence." —G.S.
"Settled in my Adirondack next to our backyard fire pit, with my wife and son in their Adirondacks nearby. We have our book of choice in one hand and a favourite beverage in the other. The smell of the fire, clean air and bursts of conversation are interspersed by our retreats to the world of literature. At solstice, Calgary evenings provide natural reading light until about 11, leaving space to read, rest, and rejuvenate." —R.P.
"Building a fine outdoor sweat lodge after a day of canoeing with a tarp, stones, fire and sand. Gently cook for oneself and companions before leaping back into the river. Repeat as needed and then set upon appropriate food and drink." —M.F.