Posts tagged "Community"
Another Week Ends: Lenten Anthropology Meets Carl Rogers, New Community, Charlie Kaufman, Oscars Morality, Auden (Again), and Katims on Crying

Another Week Ends: Lenten Anthropology Meets Carl Rogers, New Community, Charlie Kaufman, Oscars Morality, Auden (Again), and Katims on Crying

1) A particularly Lenten roundup this week, starting with this very beautiful, concise reflection from Will Willimon over at OnFaith, called “Good News! You’re a Sinner and Lent Is Here,” which deals primarily with the deep relief that comes in knowing yourself as a sinner. (Reminds us a little of someone we get to meet in NYC this spring, who has spoken quite frankly about the “cruel optimism” of our contemporary world.) The truth is, more often than not, the scandal of the Christian faith is not merely the nature or existence of God, but the sin of humankind—and the…

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Suspicious Communities and Hopeful Vicars in BBC’s Broadchurch

Suspicious Communities and Hopeful Vicars in BBC’s Broadchurch

I am still recovering. This hasn’t happened in awhile. For a variety of reasons our family was home all summer in the delicious humidity which is Annapolis. I’m pretty sure I watched more BBC in two months than I have in my entire life. Yet nothing gripped me enough to write. Until now. Until Broadchurch. Two times through the series in a week. About 11 hours glued to the computer. I am still reeling from devastation.

Yes, it’s one in a multitude about the murder of a child and the search for a killer. This takes place in the gorgeous cliff…

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Another Week Ends: Assurance Anxiety, Genesis Lessons, Tumblr Love, Lost in the Cosmos, Iron Man Prep, and Hatsune Miku’s Pizza Stage

Another Week Ends: Assurance Anxiety, Genesis Lessons, Tumblr Love, Lost in the Cosmos, Iron Man Prep, and Hatsune Miku’s Pizza Stage

1. First off, a little pop theology. Phillip Cary contributed an encouraging review of J.D. Greear’s sensationally titled Stop Asking Jesus Into Your Heart to the recent issue of Christianity Today, under the header “Anxious About Assurance”. As he does in his book Good News for Anxious Christians, Cary gets straight to the heart of the matter:

Greear is not saying it’s wrong to ask Jesus into your heart. He’s saying it’s not the same thing as believing the gospel. And if we want to be assured of salvation, it’s believing the gospel that actually counts. We are saved by faith…

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The Year in Television 2012

The Year in Television 2012

Since we’ve been talking so much about television this week, why not go all the way and do our annual recap? Truth be told, it was a slightly off year on the small screen, the first plateau in quality that I can remember in about ten years. A number of the top-drawer shows experienced something of a “downturn”, e.g. Justified and Louie, and new contenders were not quite as numerous. Which isn’t to say there hasn’t been plenty worth watching and commenting on. God no:

Top Twelve Television Series of 2012

12. Game of Thrones. I’ll admit I was pretty skeptical after…

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Surviving November, Pt 2: (Inner) Lawyers, (Inner) Press Secretaries and Presidential Debates

Surviving November, Pt 2: (Inner) Lawyers, (Inner) Press Secretaries and Presidential Debates

To read part one, go here.

I’m sure I wasn’t the only one thinking about Jonathan Haidt during this week’s presidential debate. When it comes to The Righteous Mind, it was pretty much an Exhibit A situation. That is, for all the learning and sophistication and charisma up on that stage, when two ‘righteous minds’ are locked in what Haidt calls “combat mode,” autopilot takes over and you can almost write the script. Yet we all pretty much know that the script itself is not the point of these things–people respond much more to how things are said than what is…

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Community and the Law of Letter Jackets

Community and the Law of Letter Jackets

Anyone who played sports in high school knows about letter jackets.  It was the thing you always wanted to get, and the thing you wore at every opportunity.  My own relationship with my letter jacket was a complicated one: I was awarded a letter during my sophomore year…for marching band.  As if that wasn’t indignity enough, the marching band letter was a totally different style than the sports letters, making it impossible for me to pretend that I was a “real” letterman.  Eventually, though, I was awarded several athletic letters and could wear my letter jacket proudly.  I…

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Why We Need Community

Why We Need Community

The latest issue of Christianity Today includes a short review by Todd Hertz on one of Mockingbird’s favorite sitcoms, Community. The article, “Why We Need Community,” discusses what Christians in particular, and the world in general, will be missing if Community is indeed canceled and not renewed by NBC for a fourth season. Hertz argues that despite its wacky hijinks and endless parodies, Community is honest about, well, community—or  as Dietrich Bonhoeffer put it, life together.

In Mockingbird-like fashion, Hertz also insightfully touches on the abreactive nature of the show. (Cool. Cool, cool, cool.) Here are some highlights excerpted from the…

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Another Week Ends: Celebrity Body Image, Depression Chemistry, the Burden of Secrecy, Fitz Allison, Ryan Gosling, Community, Game of Thrones, and Spiritualized

Another Week Ends: Celebrity Body Image, Depression Chemistry, the Burden of Secrecy, Fitz Allison, Ryan Gosling, Community, Game of Thrones, and Spiritualized

1. On Slate, Emily Shire asks, “Should Celebrity Body ‘Struggles’ Make Us Feel Better About Ourselves?” and her insightful little response doubles as quite the treatise on the function of Standards (of beauty etc) and how attempts to allay judgment often backfire, i.e. that the notch on the scale isn’t the issue so much as the scale itself:

Allure’s feature is only one of the latest in a long line of magazine stories about female celebrities “bravely” grappling with their “physical imperfections.” A growing number of publications are trying to pass off barely-clad celebrities strutting their stuff as an inspiring act…

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Another Week Ends: Willy Loman Preaches, Complicated Mourning, Extroversion Mandates, Celebrity Marriage Formulas, Dependency Dilemmas, Kontiki, Mad Men and Rowan Williams

Another Week Ends: Willy Loman Preaches, Complicated Mourning, Extroversion Mandates, Celebrity Marriage Formulas, Dependency Dilemmas, Kontiki, Mad Men and Rowan Williams

1. A little over four weeks until our Spring Conference in NYC (4/19-21), which means that on Monday night 3/19, the “Earlybird rates” will expire ($150/couple or $100/person all-inclusive). You can’t say we didn’t warn you… If you need an extra push, earlier this week the Episcopal News Service published a generous piece about Mockingbird, which describes our past conferences in flattering terms. So pre-register today! And speaking of our little organization, in the you-can’t-make-this-stuff-up department, a killer Mbird headline appeared in The NY Times recently that was just too uncanny not to share, “Nazareth Defeats Christ the King in…

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Another Week Ends: John Carter, Obesity FAILs, Mary Karr on Suffering, Winning!, Friends with Kids, Springsteen’s Wrecking Ball and Community Returns

Another Week Ends: John Carter, Obesity FAILs, Mary Karr on Suffering, Winning!, Friends with Kids, Springsteen’s Wrecking Ball and Community Returns

1. “I am not Jesus, but I have the same initials.” Thus sang Jarvis Cocker on the classic Pulp track “Dishes” (at bottom), and it now looks like he has a new contender to the throne, Tim Riggins himself, Mr. John Carter of Mars. That’s right: Finding Nemo director Andrew Stanton’s first live-action feature is out this weekend, and the consensus thus far is that there’s no consensus. Some claim that it’s an overblown mess, others that it’s the sort of exceedingly fun pulp adventure that doesn’t get made anymore. But Stanton is a filmmaker that I trust over any…

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The Year in Television 2011

The Year in Television 2011

Another banner year for the small screen! Comedy and drama, network and cable, domestic and abroad, great work flooded the airwaves. We’ve had a lot of fun commenting on and cataloging it all. Here are my favorites of the year:

Top Eleven Television Series of 2011

11. Portlandia. Put a bird on it, indeed. Can’t get enough of Fred Armisen.

10. Luther. The first of three absolutely gripping dramas produced by the BBC this past year, this one features Idris Elba AKA Stringer Bell in a career-making performance as TV’s first ever black cockney Sherlock Holmes-by-way-of-Jack Bauer serial killer detective. Forever skirting (and…

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Scrooging Glee

Scrooging Glee

An amazing catch by the Atlantic this week on NBC sitcom Community‘s festivus-unloading on Glee. I’m not sure their analysis that the two very different shows’ similarity is quite as convincing–Community has a self-awareness that Glee has never touched, nor tried to, as well as relatable characters, relatable backstories, relatable conflicts. No need to get hot about the whole thing–as much has been said about Glee already. The gauges by which the article validates both shows is kind of unreasonable–everyone knows that sometimes the least-watched shows are the best ones, and not necessarily because they’re highbrow.  Anyways, that’s not the…

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Another Week Ends: King of Human Error, Open-Ended AA, Hollywood Junkies, Trollhunter, Craig Finn, Community and Muppets

Another Week Ends: King of Human Error, Open-Ended AA, Hollywood Junkies, Trollhunter, Craig Finn, Community and Muppets

1. Irrepressible Moneyball author Michael Lewis profiled new Mbird fave Daniel Kahneman for Vanity Fair in his recent piece, “The King of Human Error,” providing perhaps the clearest and best overview of the great social psychologist’s research yet. The anchoring effect makes for a particularly terrific addition to our ongoing catalog of human fallibility. But it’s the humility of the man himself which makes the deepest impression:

[Kahenman and his partner Amos Tversky] had a rule of thumb, [Kahneman] explains: they would study no specific example of human idiocy or irrationality unless they first detected it in themselves. “People thought we…

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Another Week Ends: Frictionless Sharing, Death Penalty, Modern Family, Community, Indie Bias, Maurice Sendak, Wilco and Walker Percy

Another Week Ends: Frictionless Sharing, Death Penalty, Modern Family, Community, Indie Bias, Maurice Sendak, Wilco and Walker Percy

1. A rather frightening article on Slate about Mark Zuckerberg’s proposed “frictionless sharing” entitled, “Not Sharing Is Caring.” As per usual, the vehicle in the world with the most potential for transparency continues to foster its exact opposite. Facebook is just the vehicle, of course, not the cause, but still… to mention escalating narcissism at this point seems almost silly, ht JS:

Sharing, in Zuckerberg’s view, has morphed from an affirmative act—that video was hilarious, I think I’ll Like it!—to something more like an unconscious state of being. I watched that video, and therefore it will be shared. If Facebook’s CEO…

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Another Week Ends: Twittercide, Paul Simon, Reality TV, Reasons To Quit, Better Book Titles, Community & Shallow Small Groups

Another Week Ends: Twittercide, Paul Simon, Reality TV, Reasons To Quit, Better Book Titles, Community & Shallow Small Groups

1. A great little editorial on Slate about the recent instances of “Twittercide” committed by folks as wide-ranging as Gilbert Gottfried, Tucker Carlson, Keith Olbermann, and Rashard Mendenhall. The author wisely points out how silly it is to blame the medium – its immediacy is a big part of its genius after all – that while twitter may amplify trash-talking by catering to impulse, the animus/judgment was there a priori. That is, the problems are a matter of nature, not technology or even self-control:

I reject the idea that Twitter trips up naïve users such…

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