This week in our Intro to History class, my students and I read through the first half of Alan Jacobs’ Breaking Bread with the Dead: A Reader’s Guide to a More Tranquil Mind. He has at least four other books I’d rather teach — I spent a good ten minutes on Wednesday just reading aloud from … More The Liberal Arts as “Breaking Bread with the Dead”
This week I wrestled with the question of whether Christian college professors like are also Christian “ministers,” I looked into the religious history of March Madness, and I recalled some of my favorite non-history classes in high school and college. Elsewhere: • There’s an idea in mathematics called self-similarity across scale: for example, in America you … More That Was The Week That Was
This week I looked back at two weeks of teaching in the middle of a pandemic and looked back four years to a series of posts that anticipated my Lindbergh biography. Elsewhere: • Going back on campus has restored a sense of the weekday/weekend divide, but that’s certainly not true for everyone. • Molly Worthen … More That Was The Week That Was
Last week I was chatting with my Bethel colleague Amy Poppinga. As we compared notes on how classes are going now that we’ve moved online, we both realized the wide variety of ways we’re using history to help students think about COVID-19. In fact, this pandemic has left both of us feeling even more confident … More Introducing Our Newest Podcast: “Pandemics and the Liberal Arts”
How we read the Bible is always shaped by our context, but I can’t wait until the day when my mind stops seeing Scripture in terms of a pandemic. Just before I came to this morning’s lectionary selection from Psalm 31, for example, I saw a news report about the possibility that we’ll all start … More The With-God Life: Deliverance from Enemies
I wrote about Ethiopian Pentecostals like the new Nobel Peace Prize winner and debates in this country over religious liberty for Christian colleges. Elsewhere: • For a more serious case of a religious group being persecuted by the state, read this firsthand account of life for Uyghur Muslims imprisoned in Chinese “reeducation” camps. • According … More That Was The Week That Was
This week I blogged about the religious history of the Internet and the similarities between preaching and teaching. Our podcast focused on the experience of women coaching college sports. Elsewhere… • It’s the time of year that colleges and universities invite commencement speakers. One of the most controversial choices came from Taylor University, a non-denominational … More That Was The Week That Was
This week I started a small business and compared my Charles Lindbergh biography to a sitcom. Meanwhile, here’s what some other people were writing: • I was happy to take a week off from Anxious Bench in order to let Elesha Coffman wonder if historians make too much of empathy and too little of disgust and lament. … More That Was The Week That Was
I haven’t done a lot of work on my Lindbergh biography this fall after a great summer of research. In part, that’s not by choice: I’d much rather learn about aviation than wrestle with a financial crisis at work. But I have tried to let the project lay fallow for a short season, in order … More What Am I Trying to Do as a Biographer?
I’ve got a new post up today at The Anxious Bench, on the presence of three virtues in Abraham Lincoln’s original 1863 proclamation of a national day of thanksgiving. But that’s all the blogging I plan to do this week. Enjoy your Thanksgiving, and we’ll hope to see you back here next week, when I plan posts on teaching, academic … More Happy Thanksgiving!