CultureLifeLinks

Gender Equality and Gender War

I have a piece up at First Things today on the sexual revolution, #MeToo, and why women are always the biggest losers in a sexually autonomous society. Here's an excerpt: The two most consequential gains of the sexual revolution in my lifetime have been birth control and pornography, both of which have radically shaped the…

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BooksCultureJournalismLife

A Brief Word to Book Reviewers

-Sneering dismissal of an author is acceptable to the degree that his book likewise is sneering and dismissive. What works marvelously well in a review of Richard Dawkins doesn't in a review of Mitch Albom. You might have the same opinion of both writers, and that's fine! But responding to Mitch Albom as if he's…

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Movie ReviewsPop culture

On “The Godfather Part II”

Netflix has recently added both The Godfather and The Godfather: Part II to its streaming library. Below is something I wrote in 2014 on what makes Part II so great. “That’s my family, Kay. It’s not me.” Michael Corleone is not lying when he says these words in The Godfather. He means them. He means them so…

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CultureLifePolitics

Defining Pro-Life Down

I have only a brief thought on Matt Loftus's recent essay (and follow-up blog post) on whether we should use the term "pro-life" to refer to issues other than the traditional referents. It seems to me that you can't make the term "pro-life" do more by making it mean less. I think that's what Matt…

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CulturePop cultureTheology

In Defense (Somewhat) of Self-Help

When I was in Bible college, few things received scorn as unanimously and frequently as the self-help genre. The corner of your local bookstore dominated by big, bright covers and names like Oprah and Tony Robbins was, almost all of us young, restless, Reformed pre-seminarians agreed, poison. We understood that the self-help genre was a…

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BooksCultureTheology

Hatmakers and Hot Takers

One thing that concerns me about conservative evangelicalism right now is the inability we often demonstrate to let those who exist and teach outside the boundaries of historic Christianity...just stay there. I often feel like there's a compulsion in evangelical culture to always be writing and tweeting against "false teachers," and here I include air-quotes…

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BooksLife

My Year in Books

Let's get this out of the way: Year-end reading lists are usually more helpful for making us feel guilty about what we didn't read than making us thankful for what we did. My own year of reading was certainly no exception; the pile of books that I read this year seems so small compared to…

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CultureLifePolitics

Should We Blame the Pro-Life Movement?

There is a strain of thinking among some evangelicals that I cannot get my head around. Here it is: The Republican Party's collapse of virtue and embrace of sub-moral strongmen can be attributed, at least in part, to the well-intentioned but naive single-mindedness of the pro-life movement. James K.A. Smith's brief Tweet thread seems to repeat…

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CulturePoliticsTheology

Evangelicals, Politics, and Church History

Have you ever wondered why our intense conversations within evangelicalism about politics, character, and voting almost never end up citing major figures in church history? These are pretty important debates, after all. Navigating the moral failures of elected officials and choosing some sinners rather than others to wield authority over the public square seems like…

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CultureLifePop culture

Children and the Peril of Internet Fame

Stop me if you've heard this before. A parent records their child doing/saying something moving/saddening/remarkable. The parent then posts the video of their child to social media. Social media reacts strongly to the video, and before you know it, the video—and the child—are "viral" digital sensations. They start trending on Buzzfeed, being re-shared by celebrities…

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