Can We Live Without Tradition? Part Two

In his article, “The Future of Tradition,” author Lee Harris suggests that America’s current culture war is the result of society’s existing customs and traditions being called to the bar of reason and ruthlessly interrogated and cross-examined by an intellectual elite. What happens when such traditions are dishonored and abandoned?

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Can We Live Without Tradition? Part One

Every civilizational form assumes some role for tradition. No cultural moment emerges from a vacuum, for every generation responds in some way to the tradition it has inherited. Without an appreciation for the role of tradition and the inheritance of moral wisdom, the achievement of civilization becomes dubious if not dead.

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The Post-Truth Era–Welcome to the Age of Dishonesty

Have we now reached a stage of social evolution that is “beyond honesty?” That fascinating question is raised by author Ralph Keyes in his book, The Post-Truth Era: Dishonesty and Deception in Contemporary Life. “I think it’s fair to say that honesty is on the ropes,” Keyes observes. “Deception has become commonplace at all levels of contemporary life.”

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True Beauty — And True Wisdom

Carolyn Mahaney and her daughter Nicole Mahaney Whitacre have written an important new book, Girl Talk: Mother-Daughter Conversations on Biblical Womanhood [Crossway Books]. The book…

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A Common Culture in the Age of Blogging?

The rise of the blogosphere continues to change the face of American culture. According to observers, the internet is now home to millions of web-logs (more commonly known as “blogs”), and something like eleven million Americans claim to have started blogs themselves. All this adds up to a major shift in our national culture and a massive threat to the dominance of what is now nostalgically called “mainstream media” (or “MSM”). Now, art critic Terry Teachout offers this observation: “The simplest description of this change is also the starkest one: the common culture of widely shared values and knowledge that once helped to unite Americans of all creeds, colors, and classes no longer exists.”

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The Mythology of Star Wars: The Faith versus the Force

When Bill Moyers asked his youngest son why he had seen Star Wars at least a dozen times, he responded: “For the same reason you have been reading the Old Testament all your life.” As Moyers explained, “He was in a new world of myth.” That new world of myth has been a topic of debate and interest ever since 1977, when Star Wars first warped itself into our national consciousness. With the release of “The Revenge of the Sith” the mythological impact is again a matter of spirited discussion.

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Is This Evangelicalism’s Terminal Generation?

The shape of the evangelical challenge in postmodern America comes down to this–we must be continually on the alert to defend the faith, for the Christian faith now faces unprecedented attacks. The rise of a postmodern culture has produced an intellectual context in which the very concept of truth is held under suspicion, and claims to revealed truth are simply ruled out of order.

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The Generation That Won’t Grow Up

For several years, I have been warning audiences that America now faces a generation of young people unwilling to grow up, assume adult responsibility, marry, and start raising families. I have addressed this issue in various articles, public lectures, and church settings. My observations have been drawn from constant contact with young adults, including college students, and are backed up by a wealth of demographic and statistical information. Nevertheless, my warnings have often been met with incredulity, suspicion, and even outrage.

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Demography and the Culture War–A Rightward Shift?

Those who think demographic statistics should be of interest only to social scientists and policy wonks should pay close attention to Stanley Kurtz’s recent article, “Demographics and the Culture War,” published in the current edition of Policy Review. A Research Fellow at the Hoover Institution of Stanford University, Kurtz is one of the most thoughtful observers of social trends on today’s scene.

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Civilization on the Brink III

America’s pop culture is now a worldwide phenomenon. The music, movies, television programming, and assorted entertainments enjoyed by Americans–especially young Americans–are quickly carried around the world in a global cultural exchange that is now leading to a cultural backlash.

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Civilization on the Brink

Signals of distress continue to come from multiple sectors of the culture. Issues ranging from sexuality and politics to art and education register seismic shifts of cultural consequence. Turning its back on a rich moral inheritance and severing its few remaining ties with Christian morality, this culture seems absolutely determined to bring itself to the very brink of moral collapse.

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Christian Codes of Conduct–A New Issue in the Culture War

Does a Christian school have the right to expel a student for immoral conduct? That may seem at first to be a ridiculous question, but the right of Christian institutions to enforce biblical standards of conduct is now under assault. The latest case comes from Dallas, Texas where Trinity Christian Academy forced an eighteen-year-old high school senior to withdraw after he acknowledged his homosexual identity and promotion of a homosexual web site on the internet.

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