Category: Culture

Death in Venice

In the summer of 1575, plague struck Venice. The city fathers tried to stem the contamination by requiring crews suspected of infection to stay on the island of Lazzaretto for forty days. These quaranta giorni are the origin of the...

/ February 25, 2020

A Hidden Life According to Neil Postman

What is it that makes Terrence Malick’s A Hidden Life so starkly unique and beautifully profound? To answer this question, let’s start by considering literature. Great literature attempts to encapsulate the beauty and hardship of life and its relation to...

/ February 3, 2020

Happiness, Virtue, and the Bastard Science

Happiness is a personal problem. Or so it may seem. Consider the self-help section. A library of recent books offers just the right mindset, self-care regimen, or practical hack for troubled souls who, presumably, hope that one more piece of...

/ January 29, 2020

Hinterland: Review of an Apocalypse

Shattered souls and ruined lives are the plot, and the ever-burgeoning, post-industrial wastelands created by the forces of global capitalism are the setting in Phil A. Neel’s gripping and brutal new book Hinterland: America’s New Landscape of Class and Conflict....

/ January 27, 2020

Uncertainty Requires Courage: Adam and Eve, Strange Allies, and the Quest for Common Ground

An atheist, a Christian, and a Jew start talking about science and faith. This might seem like it is either the lead up to joke or the beginning of a fight. Instead, it was the setting of a meeting I...

/ January 21, 2020

Book Review: The Decadent Society by Ross Douthat

Although the word “apocalypse” in contemporary popular imagination connotes “the end of the world,” the word in biblical and theological literature means an “unveiling” or a “revelation.” In apocalyptic literature, the truth about reality is not always what it seems....

/ January 7, 2020

Confusing the Substance and Accidents of Star Wars

The recent, and last, installment of the Star Wars Episodic saga, The Rise of Skywalker, is alive on the silver screen. The film opened to a successful $176.5 million (75 million less than The Force Awakens, mind you) and is...

/ December 31, 2019

A Hidden Life as Temptation Narrative

How do we live when nobody is looking, or when the collateral damage of pursuing good might outweigh complicity in evil? Terrence Malick’s film A Hidden Life is based upon the true story of Franz Jägerstätter, an Austrian peasant who...

/ December 19, 2019
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Mere Orthodoxy Best of 2019

Here is our annual list of the top pieces we published in 2019 and the general year in writing at Mere O. January Can We Reject Paedobaptism and Still Receive Paedobaptists? Several of our most read pieces this year came...

/ December 18, 2019

The 2019 Eliot Awards

Each year in December we publish our Eliot Awards at Mere Orthodoxy for excellence in long-form writing over the past 12 months. You can read our previous editions using the links below: 2018 Eliot Awards 2017 Eliot Awards We will...

/ December 17, 2019