Friday, November 02, 2007

Sts Niehbur and Bono

To anyone tracking church and culture, let alone this heteroclitic blog, the two theologians about to
be discussed likely need no introduction...

But just in case, photos of both(:

"Inevitably, politicians have taken note, and by now a well-turned Niebuhr reference is the speechwriter’s equivalent of a photo op with Bono."

That was one of several fascinating observations made by Paul Elie's article in The Atlantic's Nov 2007 issue, which begins:

Where, Schlesinger asked, was the wisdom of his old friend Reinhold Niebuhr when the country needed it? “Why, in an age of religiosity, has Niebuhr, the supreme American theologian of the 20th century, dropped out of 21st-century religious discourse?” Schlesinger was evidently unaware that theNiebuhr revival he called for was already under way. In think tanks, on op-ed pages, and on divinity-school quadrangles, Niebuhr’s ideas are more prominent than at any time since his death, in 1971.
Since I subscribe to (along with a few others) the "hard copy" of the magazine...remember those?..., I don't feel bad about pasting an excerpt or two from the "online" version (even though it is not "supposed to be" online in its full version, a google search finds.. for now.. cache of the full article here)

Besides, any article which drops the term "theoconservative," and the line "The irony of history, as Niebuhr explained it, is that our virtues and vices are inextricably joined." is worth the price.

So buy the print version already.

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