4/22/15 – This week’s episode of Past & Presence takes us to the intersection of popular culture and the past. I take viewers on a walking tour of F. Scott Fitzgerald sites in the author’s hometown of St. Paul, MN, and moderate a conversation about how the past is portrayed in films, TV series, video games, novels, and other media.
In the spirit of my fellow historian-blogger John Fea’s annual “spring membership drive,” I’d like to make an intentional effort this week to encourage readers to give back to this blog by sharing their opinions. While I appreciate everyone who reads The Pietist Schoolman, it’s rare for any post to get more than a single comment. Let’s see if … More Comment Drive: What’s the Most Historically Accurate Movie?
Please join me in supporting an exciting new project being spearheaded by Mark Safstrom (University of Illinois; editor of Pietisten) and Michelle Clifton-Soderstrom (North Park Theological Seminary; author of Angels, Worms, and Bogeys: The Christian Ethic of Pietism): a six-part documentary film series on the history of Pietism! God’s Glory, Neighbor’s Good will be written by Michelle and … More Announcements: How You Can Support a Documentary Series on Pietism
By all rights, I should be thrilled that Unbroken, the biopic about Olympic athlete-turned-WWII POW Louie Zamperini, is coming to theatres this week. I always celebrate turning in my grades by going to the movies, and this one has been on my radar ever since I read Laura Hillenbrand’s remarkable book about Zamperini during my trip to California earlier … More Unbroken: The Challenge of Biography
One of the cultural residues of Britain being a post-Christian society is that companies try to outdo each other in celebrating the Incarnation by creating memorable “Christmas adverts.” The 2014 versions are coming out, and one has already garnered enormous attention — positive and negative: Yes, the supermarket chain Sainsbury’s not only produced a three-minute … More On Advertising, Chocolate, and the First World War
Baseball is my favorite sport. Field of Dreams is my favorite movie about my favorite sport. Well, not really — it’s Bull Durham. But I like Kevin Costner’s second-best baseball movie well enough that I was all cued up to enjoy Jeffrey Huston’s recent On Faith post arguing that Field of Dreams — a quarter-century old this year — “is nothing short of … More Does Passion Distract from Calling?
This will be the last of my recaps from the 2014 meeting of the Conference on Faith and History, as I had to leave Malibu before the Saturday afternoon plenary and concurrent sessions. But look for my presentation on blogging tomorrow, and then more posts next week as I continue to think through some of what … More CFH 2014: Managing Change and a Pietist in India
Over lunch a couple weeks ago, a friend filled a pause in conversation this way: “So, World War I… What should I know?” We had been talking about the centenary of the war, and how it might be commemorated here in Minnesota. I think he had a growing sense of the war’s importance — but also of … More Learning about World War I: How to Get Started
Seventy years ago today, Allied forces landed on the beaches of Normandy — opening the long-promised “second front” in the European experience of World War II and ultimately sealing the fate of the Third Reich. There’s plenty of coverage of the anniversary — let me just suggest a few links: • The Washington Post has a striking photo … More D-Day at 70
Among other projects, I’m currently helping spearhead a discussion of digital humanities at Bethel. Initially, I was most interested by the notion of helping history, philosophy, literature, and theology majors become proficient enough with computer programming that they could use digital tools to enhance the skills traditionally associated with the humanities: reading, research, critical thinking, writing, etc. That’s still a … More Why Do I Blog with a Sans Serif Font?