Wendell Berry and Brian Volck Ponder the Gulf Oil Spill

Here’s a four-minute video of Wendell Berry responding to the oil spill.

And here’s what Brian Volck says about the disaster in today’s Good Letters post:

The wisdom of twelve step programs lies in the embrace of a moral dimension to addiction. If Deepwater Horizon is exclusively a failure of complex science, technology, and regulation, those of us who are not petroleum engineers are left without any hope to claim as our own. …

The vast, swirling, and toxic mess euphemistically named the Gulf oil “spill” calls to mind Dante’s infernal law of contrapasso, which punishes those who refuse God’s mercy by finally giving each sinner what he wants—albeit in unanticipated ways. We wanted lots of oil; now we have what we want, though not where we wanted it.

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About Jeffrey Overstreet

Jeffrey Overstreet has two passions: writing fiction, and celebrating art — music, cinema, photography, literature — through writing and teaching. He is the author of a “memoir of dangerous moviegoing” — Through a Screen Darkly. And his four-novel fantasy series, The Auralia Thread, which begins with Auralia's Colors, was published by Random House. He speaks at universities and conferences around the world about understanding art through eyes of faith. He is earning his MFA in Creative Writing at Seattle Pacific University, where he has worked for 11 years as an editor, writer, and communications project manager. His work has been recognized in The New Yorker, TIME, The Seattle Times, IMAGE, Ravi Zacharias International — and Christianity Today, where he served as a film journalist for more than a decade. He recently began a weekly column called "Listening Closer" for Christ and Pop Culture.

  • Rick Ro.

    Thanks for those, Jeffrey. I’ve been mulling on the oil spill a lot lately, feeling there’s something profound and deeply spiritual in this man-made disaster. In trying to satisfy our lust for oil, we just hit one of the Earth’s arteries and have no idea how to stop the bleeding. Both of these help articulate what I’ve been trying to think through.


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