May 8, 2021

On May 24, 2021, Bob Dylan turns 80. In honor of this occasion, over the next two weeks or so, I will post in eight entries what I believe are the 80 greatest songs that Dylan has composed and performed over his nearly 60 year career. What I mean by “composed” is that he wrote the song, either in its entirety or is credited as its co-author. Of the 80 songs on my list, only three of them are c0-authored:... Read more

April 28, 2021

In the Fall of 1966 I began first grade at St. Michael’s Elementary School in Brooklyn, New York.  Every school day my mother would walk me to St. Michael’s, while I carried the lunch she had packed for me.  One day, for some strange reason, I took it upon myself to walk home for lunch.  One of the 8th grade girls that was assigned to monitor the first graders during our lunch time asked where I was going as I... Read more

March 23, 2021

I am happy to announce the launching of the Academic Freedom Alliance, a new group of professors dedicated to the cultivation, protection, and defense of academic freedom. According to its website, The Academic Freedom Alliance is an alliance of college and university faculty members who are dedicated to upholding the principle of academic freedom. This principle is central to the mission of our institutions for the pursuit of truth and knowledge. Our members from across the political spectrum recognize that... Read more

March 23, 2021

That’s the title of an essay I published last Thursday over at Public Discourse.  Here’s how it begins: It seems somehow fitting that the great beat poet and artist Lawrence Ferlinghetti, departed this mortal realm (at the age of 101) on February 22, 2021, the day after digitally unbooked When Harry Became Sally. You can read the whole thing here. Read more

March 13, 2021

I am grateful to be a contributor to a festschrift honoring the Jewish philosopher David Novak: The Achievement of David Novak: A Catholic-Jewish Dialogue.  Just published by Pickwick Publications (an imprint of Wipf and Stock), the book is edited by Matthew Levering and Tom Angier.  My chapter–entitled “A Christian Account of Why David Novak Is Right about the Same-God Question”–deals with the question of whether Christians, Muslims, and Jews worship the same God.  It’s a topic I’ve addressed in several places over the past... Read more

March 5, 2021

I am happy to report that Thomas S. Hibbs has been named the holder of the J. Newton Rayzor Sr. Chair in Philosophy at Baylor University.  The previous holder of the Rayzor Chair was John J. Haldane, who held it from 2015 until 2020. Currently president of the University of Dallas (UD), Tom will begin his appointment at Baylor on July 1.  His last day as UD president will be March 7, the original feast day of St. Thomas Aquinas. For the... Read more

February 6, 2021

Tomorrow I will be watching Super Bowl LV. Although I love watching football, I sometimes wonder if I should.   I address this question in an essay entitled I published over six years ago soon after Baylor University opened up its new football stadium.   Originally published on September 12, 2014 over at  The Catholic Thing I republish it here in its entirety: Ever since my wife and I bought a giant flat-screen television set for our living room, I cannot get... Read more

January 29, 2021

We recently had an unfortunate incident at Baylor in which a small group of students on campus, with the assistance of the student newspaper (The Lariat), called for the dismissal of a lecturer in the English department.  Her crime?  She had made comments on twitter with which these students did not agree. The comments concerned the uncontroversial public policy question of whether biological males who claim to identify as girls or women should be allowed in semi-private spaces (such as... Read more

December 31, 2020

It is not unusual for universities to house a think-tank or two.  A think-tank is  an academic unit committed to research and the proliferation of that research. Some of the most well-known think-tanks include Stanford University’s Hoover Institution and Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy. They often host lectures, symposia, discussions, debates, etc. in which resident scholars and/visiting researchers participate.  Unlike other academic units of the university, think-tanks do not offer degrees or even classes, though most if not... Read more

December 14, 2020

The last two years have been my most productive in terms of publishing.  I really don’t understand why.  My guess is that I have become far more disciplined in reading and writing while at the same time realizing how little I actually know.  Looking back at some of my early publications in the late 1980s and throughout the 1990s, I am actually surprised that they were published at all.  What I see in my younger self is a way too... Read more

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