The Future of Christian Learning: An Evangelical and Catholic Dialogue
Mark A. Noll and James Turner
Thomas Albert Howard, ed
Notre Dame historians Noll and Turner each contributes an essay to this slim and very useful volume, and each then responds to the other, their dialogue framed by Gordon College's Tal Howard. The larger context is evangelical-Catholic rapprochement; the specific focus is on what distinctively Christian scholarship might look like (Noll), or how the notion might be a will-o'-the wisp (Turner), though both scholars cover a lot of ground. The conversation is nuanced and mutually appreciative, but not without sharp differences. Here's a book that bears underlining and re-reading.
To Live Upon Hope: Mohicans and Missionaries in the Eighteenth-Century Northeast
Behind the mythology of The Last of the Mohicans and the revisionist accounts of latter-day commentators, Native and otherwise, who regard the Christian mission to the Indians as an unmitigated disaster, there lies a tangled and often deeply moving tale, well told by Rachel Wheeler despite too much reliance on currently fashionable academic categories. We should read it not only to better understand a crucial episode in the national story, but also to shine a comparative light on the working out of our own faith.
The Palace Council
Stephen L. Carter
When a writer who has made his name in public policy or some comparable realm decides to turn his hand to fiction, it's wise to avert your eyes. But there are noteworthy exceptions. The late William F. Buckley comes to mind; Yale law professor and former CT columnist Stephen Carter is another. The Palace Council, Carter's third novel, is not only his most accomplished to date, it's one of the more enjoyable books of the year. Freely mixing fictional characters and historical personages, Carter ranges from the early 1950s to the early 1970s—up to the resignation of President Nixon—to give his account of the Sixties from the distinctive perspective of elites in "the darker nation."
John Wilson is editor of Books & Culture.
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