In the New York Times this past weekend, the film critic A.O. Scott wrote about the slide to juvenile pop culture, and the ups and downs of it. I responded in a Christianity Today piece:
Sometimes there’s something to that. Books written for children, movies made for and about teenagers, don’t always provide the kind of intellectual meat that helps adults grow in their understanding of the world. Add to that the steady stream of mediocre fart-joke machines that seek to imitate the few comedies in the genre that were genuinely funny and explored interesting questions, and it can be tough for a grownup at the movies.
But in the past few years I’ve learned a lot from other conservative critics who start from the foundation that it is our duty, as created beings, to both preserve the best of the old and champion the best of the new, wherever it is coming from. And part of that is conserving the best of childhood, too—which, let’s face it, lies in the past for all of us, just as earlier eras do.