Acton Institute Powerblog Archives

Christian Social Thought

St. John of Damascus in the History of Liberty

Today (Dec. 4) is commemorated an important, though sometimes little-known, saint: St. John of Damascus. Not only is he important to Church history as a theologian, hymnographer, liturgist, and defender of Orthodoxy, but he is also important, I believe, to the history of liberty. Continue Reading...

Back to Civilization’s Point Zero?

Visiting San Francisco’s Haight-Ashbury district in 1968, Tom Wolfe was struck by the way hippies there “sought nothing less than to sweep aside all codes and restraints of the past and start out from zero.” In his essay “The Great Relearning,” Wolfe connects this to Ken Kesey’s pilgrimage to Stonehenge, inspired by “the idea of returning to civilization’s point zero” and trying to start all over from scratch and do it better. Continue Reading...

Textbook Bubble-Boys

According to AEI author Mark Perry, there is another education-related “bubble” to worry about: the textbook bubble. He writes that this textbook bubble “continues to inflate at rates that make the U.S. Continue Reading...

Rachel Carson’s Environmental Religion

Review of Silent Spring at 50: The False Crises of Rachel Carson. Edited by Roger Meiners, Pierre Desrochers, and Andrew Morriss (Cato, 2012) During the 50 years following the publication of Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring, much has been written to discredit the science of her landmark book. Continue Reading...

Solzhenitsyn: ‘There’s Plenty of Freedom, But Little Truth’

Pravmir.com, a Russian site, has published an English translation of an interview given by Archpriest Nikolai Chernyshev, who is identified as “the spiritual father of the Solzhenitsyn family during the final years of the writer’s life.” The interview touches on Aleksandr Solzenitsyn’s upbringing in a deeply religious Russian Orthodox family, his encounter with militant atheism ( … he joined neither the Young Pioneers nor the Komsomol [All-Union Leninist Young Communist League]. Continue Reading...

Recommended: ‘That Hideous Strength’

I just finished re-reading through C.S. Lewis’ “Space Trilogy” and have a Holiday book recommendation for you: the third title in this series, That Hideous Strength. Certainly all three are fantastic and important reads that incorporate thematic elements relating to theology, philosophy, history, politics, economics and astronomy. Continue Reading...