writing

  • Present At the Creation“: on the idpol-fueled internal collapse of the early 00s anarchist movement as a hint at society-wide changes on the way, and how Mark Fisher’s “Vampire Castle” expanded from a subculture to the entire world (Wesley Yang’s Year Zero)
  • The Hysterical Style in American Humanities“: on insipid internet academic disputes, how humanities professors should (and should not) comport themselves in public, and the need for dwelling in perplexity rather than feigning expert knowledge (Chronicle of Higher Education)
    • George Will’s response at The Washington Post
  • On Duty“: editorial letter to issue 27 of The Point, on how protest raises the issue of civilian duty during wartime and what other ways there might be to discharge such duty
  • Insider-Outsiders“: on the fascinating, charismatic, and “psychedelically illegible” NYU professor Fred Moten as an example of a strange new kind of public character: the “insider-outsider,” who stands atop the hierarchies he claims to defy (First Things)
  • Where Dreams Come True“: on my time at the National Conservatism conference in Orlando, our bewildering and unstable political moment, America as a land of competing doomsayers (The Point)
  • Death and Forgiveness“: on my father’s troubled life and death, and how an exploration into the history and philosophy of forgiveness convinced me of the Christian truth (Comment)
  • The High Church of Wokeism“: on how the history of the Unitarian Universalist Association prefigures the postmillennial culture of bureaucratically-enforced political correctness (Tablet)
  • The Cop-Out of ‘Follow the Science’“: how a top-down collapse of governmental authority unfairly burdened individuals with the responsibility for coronavirus mitigation (The New Atlantis)
  • Be Not Afraid“: on my dad’s addiction to outrage media, and how we might escape its corrosive effects (Breaking Ground)
  • The Long Lent“: on the plague year as Lenten penitence that never ended (The Point)
  • Cash Mob“: on the GameStop stock market raid, the beauty of solidarity, and the danger of crowds (The Point)
  • Fun Till Death“: on the Capitol protest as creative disruption (The Point)
  • Tragedy of the Common Good“: on Ivan Illich, the common good, and why (contrary to the opinions of a certain Harvard law professor) the marriage of bureaucracy and corporate power is fundamentally hostile to human flourishing (Athwart)
  • Love & Longing“: on neurodivergence, the human need for belonging, and the Australian television series Love on the Spectrum (Athwart)
  • Where Did Conversation Go?“: some reflections on the decline of conversation in America, in favor of the political sermon (Athwart)
  • Crying in a Wasteland“: a review of Laszlo Foldenyi’s Dostoyevsky Reads Hegel in Siberia and Bursts Into Tears (Athwart)

A handful of album reviews at the Louisville Eccentric Observer (LEO Weekly).

Podcast appearances:

  • Phronesis,” with fellow Athwart editors Bradley Davis and Will Lombardo: we talked about Ivan Illich’s 1983 lecture “Silence is a Commons”
  • Sacred and Profane Love,” with Jennifer Frey: we talked about my Breaking Ground piece “Toward the Renewal of Humanistic Education in America,” the problems of academic liberal arts, and what Ivan Illich gets right and wrong about institutionalized education
  • Manifesto!“, with Jacob Siegel and Phil Klay: we talked about Nicolas Gomez Dávila’s “The Authentic Reactionary” and Chaim Grade’s “My Quarrel with Hersh Rasseyner
  • ex.haust,” with Emmett Penney: we talked about my Tablet article on Unitarian Universalism, the tangled course of cultural transmission, and how we might get back to making a decent world with one another
  • Enduring Interest,” with Flagg Taylor: on Henry Bugbee’s strange and wonderful essay to the Montana education commission “Education and the Style of Our Lives,” and the goals and purposes of liberal education more broadly
  • PloughCast,” with Susannah Black and Peter Mommsen: on Christian hardcore, the strange internet afterlife of post-punk, and finding fellowship in strange places

Other people’s writing, formatted into zines.