1. 1. When Creation is Not Good; 2. Male and Female; 3. The Biblical Logic of Otherness; 4. The Animal With Logos; 5. “And It Was Very Good”; 6. The Fruit of Wisdom; 7. Adam’s Silence; 8. Adam and Ahab
4. Family Gift, Become as Children, The Logos of the Gift, Receptively Recreative
5. Receptive Giver, Passionate Self-Control, God, Sexuality, Self
6. God’s Righteousness, Wright’s Ordo Salutis
9. Does Baptism Justify?, Washed, Sanctified, Baptized
11. Mark Driscoll on Problems of Citation
12. The Real Problem With Mark Driscoll’s ‘Citation Errors’
13. The Questions of Gay Marriage: How Serious a Concern is Homosexuality?
14. 101 Christian Women Speakers
15. The Secret Behind the Bible’s Most Highlighted Verse
16. Once Again: On Being Unapologetically Charismatic
17. Theological Theses on Technologies of Knowledge
18. Lordly Obedience
19. Treasures in Matthew’s Genealogy, 1
20. Forty Things I Like About Christianity
21. Bauckham, Colossians 2:9, and the Christology of the Philosophers
22. Bible Jeopardy 4 – Tough one this time. 46/50 here.
23. On Getting Some Perspective: The “Historical Buddha”
24. A Video Parable For Exegesis/Hermeneutics
25. Vanhoozer on Enns on Inerrancy
26. Five Views on Biblical Inerrancy: A Reflection, Not a Review
27. Now available: Tikkun Olam—To Mend the World
28. Leaving the Evangelical Borg Collective: Seven of Nine and Me
29. A Note on Writing: Inspiration and Asceticism
30. The FAQs: The Sister Wives Polygamy Ruling
31. Child ‘Training’ Book Triggers Backlash
32. The Hobbit—An Unexpected Deficiency
33. Testament – The tragic diary of a WW2 boy.
34. Are All of Your Photo Memories Actually Making You Forget?
35. The Dark Age Myth: An Atheist Reviews “God’s Philosophers”
36. Your Ability to Can Even: A Defence of Internet Linguistics
38. Global Gender Disparities in Science
39. Gift Vouchers and Mispredicting Markets
40. Boys Improve in School From Feeling Top of the Class
42. Andrew Lilico on the Gay Change Bill
44. Who Cheats?
45. The Rites of Manhood: Man’s Need for Ritual
47. The Boy Whose Brain Could Unlock Autism
48. The British Library Uploads One Million Images onto Flickr Commons
49. Men Take Computer Science: Women Take Cooking Classes
50. Huge Reserves of Freshwater Lie Beneath the Ocean Floor
51. Inside a Brain Circuit: The Will to Press On
53. ‘Friendly’ Bacteria Treat Autism-Like Symptoms in Mice
55. How to Fix Grade Inflation at Harvard
56. 50 Social Innovations That Changed the World
57. Being Against Gay Marriage Doesn’t Make You a Homophobe
58. 10 Amazing Innovations of the Near Future
59. Comparing Different Countries’, Continents’, and Cities’ Sizes with Overlaid Maps
60. David Foster Wallace’s Advice on Arguing Persuasively
62. David Hobbs Mucks Up Evolution: Part 1, Part 2
63. Coldest Spot on Earth Identified by Satellite
64. Now You Can Make Your Own Street View Scenes
65. A Glossary of Gestures for Critical Discussion
66. A Ten Month Old’s Letter to Santa
67. Casting a Fire Ant Colony in Molten Aluminium
68. Chicago’s Magical Piano
69. WHOLOCK—Sherlock Meets The Doctor!
70. David Bentley Hart: Being, Consciousness, and Bliss
71. Woolies and Soweto Gospel Choir: Madiba Tribute
I have not been reading much of specifically theological interest. My girlfriend is going off to the Congo for medical missionary work, so I’ve been reading V.S. Naipaul’s A Bend in the River. It’s excellent as a novel, and quite fascinating as a journey into a different world. And I’ve been reading more Shakespeare.
In other news, Geoffrey Hill has a new collected poems out. Here is an interview:
An old Image editorial on Hill:
A Bend in the River isn’t a novel about slavery, but it has a lot of interesting sociological observations on slavery. There are situations where slaves refusing to leave rich, high status families, because to being part of such a family is a prestigious thing and they don’t want to lose that status. There are also the familial obligations that slave owners have to their slaves, to the point where the slaves can almost take over the household. That and the various ways that slaves have of getting their way with their supposed masters. In any event, slavery, as depicted, is a complex web of social obligation, not a brute top down power relationship.
As I say, the novel isn’t about slavery. Slavery just happens to be a big part of the society where it is set.
There’s been quite the back and forth over at Rod Dreher’s blog about the merits of the tatted up Emergent minister Nadia Bolz-Weber. One of the things I’ve noticed is that a lot of theologically liberal writers are a lot more tolerable when writing narrative. I’ve noticed this about Rachel Held Evans and Sarah Bessey too; they are all way more interesting when telling a story, even one about themselves. Someone like Marilynne Robinson too is way better in her novels than her essays.
That is the thing about the charge about not wanting to listen to women with different perspectives: I am very much interested in hearing people’s stories. I am less interested in being told how I must interpret them. The latter requires a different set of skills.
Interesting. I haven’t followed the discussions over Bolz-Weber especially closely.
I have been tempted in the past to launch a direct and detailed attack at the entire approach to ‘story’ in such circles. From the vague, uninformed, and unhelpful statements made about ‘narrative’ as a biblical category to the way that stories are regarded as ‘sacred’, to the way that they are privatized (‘my own story’) and people are presumed to have exclusive interpretative insight and rights to their stories.
I agree with your criticisms. I’d be particularly critical of how personal experience often becomes an unassailable authority.
And yet, people’s experience is their experience, their reactions are their reactions and their feelings are their feelings. These aren’t determinative of anything, but they are things that need to be taken into account. If Rachel Held Evans or Sarah Bessey doesn’t feel comfortable inhabiting a particular gender role, I want to hear about it, in detail. If they want to start interpreting the Bible or making theological arguments, things for which they are manifestly unqualified, frankly I just don’t care.
I too believe that attending to accounts of personal experience can be important and worthwhile. However, I also think that many people assume that personal experience proves a lot more than it actually does. Our experience does not pre-exist interpretation (we experience things ‘as’ something or other). Rather than existing in a realm of brute factuality, experience exists in a realm of interpretation, often mistaken interpretation. Perception, desire, experience, etc. are all shot through with interpretative commitments and these commitments should be open to challenge.
There’s also the “My story represents all X” problem.
Come to think of it, the best chapter of Spufford’s Unapologetic, the one on prayer, was pretty autobiographical too.