The Mediated Self: Identity, Advertising & Eucharist

In The Life of Brian, the titular protagonist wanted to remind everyone that “we are all individuals”. Because of that, nobody needed to listen or be an extension of anyone’s will, never mind his own. In so doing, Brian had articulated one of the central pillars of Liberalism: that everyone was fundamentally a self-contained individual, with [Read More…]

Emptying Christ in Identity Politics

“Identity” has become a buzzword, peddled and circulated with increasing bombast in all manner of social, political and scholarly discourse. People now cannot do or say anything without first making some statement of his or her racial, gender, geographical or other identity marker, either apologetically or with a touch of chauvinistic pride. In this context, [Read More…]

Friendship, Politics & Justice

We are pleased to feature a guest-post this week by Dr. Timothy J. Furry, who is Instructor of Religion and Philosophy at Cranbrook Kingswood Upper School in Bloomfield Hills, MI in the United States. Dr. Furry is also the author of Allegorizing History: The Venerable Bede, Figural Exegesis and Historical Theory, published by Pickwick Publications.   Moreover, friendship [Read More…]

Playing Heaven and the Real Liturgical Deal

The first world drips with entertainment. Televisions beam sporting events, the latest series or reruns from our youth. The sides of buses are plastered with advertisements for movies, while the screens on our smartphones flash yet another injunction to download the mother of all strategy games. Our lunch hours are as much spent catching up [Read More…]

Let My Porkchop Go: Against the Recruitment of Everything

…from a hungry massgoer… One Sunday after Mass, I went to the pub to get a porkchop with a group of other massgoers. When it was served, the first thing that hit me was the lovely freshly fried aroma, together with the meaty fragrance of the gravy that was cascading down its sides. That, combined [Read More…]

Prophecy & Architecture

While teaching political philosophy at Campion College Australia, one minor thread of the course related to the impact that commercial and consumer cultures, such as the ones entrenched in Australia, have on the expression or maintenance of a thoroughgoing Christian identity and practice. It was suggested that these consumer cultures do not sit neutrally when [Read More…]

The Borderlands of Art & Worship

There is a third book in the works somewhere which will, when it finally comes out, discuss our frought relationship between pop culture on the one hand, and the Christian spiritual life on the other. Many are quick to point out the harmful affects of the artifacts of the former on the latter – pointing [Read More…]

Soulless Incisions in the Frantic Pursuit of ‘Now’

The 2011 Spanish thriller The Skin I Live In (La Piel Que Habito), starring Antonio Banderas, begins with Banderas’ character, a surgeon named Robert Ledgard, inventing a revolutionary burn-resistant artificial skin. As the film progresses, however, it becomes apparent that the acts of plastic surgery that drive the invention of this skin are driven by [Read More…]

Pontifical Sass: More Little Surprises from Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI

This is a follow up from a post last week, showing some of the little highlights from what appears to be the last interview between the German journalist Peter Seewald and Pope Emertis Benedict XVI in Last Testament. The first post, which focused on the first half of the book, identified a selection of surprising [Read More…]

The Little Surprises of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI

Most readers are probably already aware that Last Testament: In His Own Words, the second and last instalment of interviews between the German journalist Peter Seewald and Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, was released a few weeks ago. The book is striking on a number of levels. Most significant is the fact that, while billed as the [Read More…]