That Was The Week That Was

A week of questions here at The Pietist Schoolman and elsewhere in the blogging universe:


  • Why do I love Sherlock Holmes, including his newest incarnation on the BBC?
  • What makes Tim Tebow the best story (in sports or otherwise) and the recipient of unsolicited advice from fellow evangelical quarterbacks?
  • Why would the foreign minister of Poland encourage Germany to wield power?
  • How has Pietism influenced one American denomination (the Baptist General Conference) and its college and seminary (Bethel)? Virgil Olson’s answers form the first in a new series of posts.
  • And is online education a viable replacement for face-to-face? I posted my 2009 Faculty Excellence Award talk reflecting on that question: part one on the “no significant difference” hypothesis; and part two on the unique advantages of both models.


  • Newt Gingrich
    Licensed by Creative Commons (Gage Skidmore)

    What did new Republican frontrunner Newt Gingrich write about education in the Belgian Congo, in his doctoral dissertation? Adam Hochschild read it, and wasn’t hugely impressed. (To be fair, he’d probably criticize my own dissertation — on education in occupied western Germany, partly from the same time period that Gingrich considered — for similarly focusing on the role of those in control rather than those under control.)

  • Why does Afghanistan have a salient stretching to China, and Namibia one splitting Angola from Botswana? Frank Jacobs finds the answers in the history of European empires.
  • Why do we insist on ranking “top ten” or “best of” lists? Adam Kotsko ponders. (H/T First Things)
  • Are “personal” and “social” appropriate modifiers for “salvation” and “justice”? Tim King thinks not. (Another good one last week from the roster of bloggers at God’s Politics: Nadia Bolz-Weber on Matthew 25.)
  • Why did Scot McKnight change from Calvinism to Arminianism? He’s now three posts into telling that story.
  • Was the original St. Nicholas very jolly? A new film promises answers. (H/T Mere Comments) Let’s hope it includes the moment at the Council of Nicea when Nick smacked Arius upside the head
  • Am I looking forward to the new film version of John Le Carré’s Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy? (I thought I’d slip in one rhetorical question.) I love the British miniseries version starring Alec Guinness, but I’m passing curious to see how a cast that includes Gary Oldman, John Hurt, Colin Firth, Ciaran Hinds, and the star of the aforementioned Sherlock, Benedict Cumberbatch (can’t write that name enough!), comes off in a compressed version of the story.

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