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Posts tagged "J K Rowling"

Another Week Ends: Turklean Empathy, OK GO, The Cursed Child, Religious Skepticism, Couples Fooling Themselves, and Hail, Caesar!

Another Week Ends: Turklean Empathy, OK GO, The Cursed Child, Religious Skepticism, Couples Fooling Themselves, and Hail, Caesar!

Click here for the accompanying episode of The Mockingcast, featuring JR Rozko, Aaron Zimmerman and EKR.

The new OK GO video is amazing! Click on the image to watch.

Sherry Turkle, at it again, people. In The New York Review of Books, Jacob Weisberg samples a troop of tech-related books released this year, one of which is Sherry Turkle’s new one, Reclaiming Conversation: The Power of Talk in a Digital Age. Turkle, who we’ve talked about quite a bit on Mockingbird, is an MIT clinician and an ethnographer, and has focused her expertise in the last two books on the rise…

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Another Week Ends: Motivated Podcasts, Inverted Envy, Doofus Batman, Evensong Revelations, Rowling Rewards, Salinger Silence, Denny Lives Again, and Watterson's Speech

Another Week Ends: Motivated Podcasts, Inverted Envy, Doofus Batman, Evensong Revelations, Rowling Rewards, Salinger Silence, Denny Lives Again, and Watterson’s Speech

1. “Want to Win a Political Debate? Try Making a Weaker Argument” reads a headline over at The Pacific Standard, and what follows is a helpful refresher on the overpowering role of self-image when it comes to argumentation. In very Haidt-esque fashion, and with the help of some fresh research, the article claims that the strongest arguments for a particular position are the ones most likely to trigger a defensive response from those who disagree. The implications for those engaged in any kind of religious or theological dialogue should be self-evident. As we all know, social psychology of this kind…

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The Wake and the Wound: J.K. Rowling's The Casual Vacancy

The Wake and the Wound: J.K. Rowling’s The Casual Vacancy

None of them was Barry. He had been a living example of what they proposed in theory…Did they not see what hopeless advocates they were, compared to the man who had died?

Though there was a lot of buzz amongst Potter fans about the release of a new J.K. Rowling book—one written exclusively for adults—there has been a sobering lack of electricity for The Casual Vacancy since its release this past September. Back in the fall, the Huffington Post ran an early survey of worldwide news critics, and concluded with: “meh.” The loudest naysayer was surely the NYT Book Review who…

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Another Week Ends: The Casual Vacancy, Perfect People, Moral Licensing Kohlrabi, Kinkade Kitsch, Atheists and Non-Apocalypses, Dawes and Metta World Peace

Another Week Ends: The Casual Vacancy, Perfect People, Moral Licensing Kohlrabi, Kinkade Kitsch, Atheists and Non-Apocalypses, Dawes and Metta World Peace

Filling in for DZ, who is on vacation this week.

1) Little, Brown released details regarding J.K. Rowling’s first novel for adults, The Casual Vacancy. It is due to be released in the UK and US September 27. Here is the back blurb:

When Barry Fairweather dies unexpectedly in his early forties, the little town of Pagford is left in shock. Seemingly an English idyll, with a cobbled market square and an ancient abbey, what lies behind the pretty façade is a town at war.

Rich at war with poor, teenagers at war with their parents, wives at war with their husbands, teachers…

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Another Week Ends: DFW50, Simpsons 500, Ira Talks Radiolab, Rowling Talks New Novel, Helpless Women, Helpless Kids, Lenten Identity, Cormac McCarthy Pictionary

Another Week Ends: DFW50, Simpsons 500, Ira Talks Radiolab, Rowling Talks New Novel, Helpless Women, Helpless Kids, Lenten Identity, Cormac McCarthy Pictionary

All the best wishes for those mockingbirds at the Liberate Conference in Fort Lauderdale this weekend, including our very own David Zahl.

1. Along with the rest of the blogosphere this week, we wish David Foster Wallace a happy 50th birthday. There’s too many blessings to recount, but the web has exploded with numerous avenues for you to get your feet wet or soul soaked. Take a look at The Awl’s “46 Things to Read and See for David Foster Wallace’s 50th Birthday,” a piece of which includes an 86-minute interview with German TV ZDF, the first of which you’ll find…

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Another Week Ends: Terry Eagleton, Nar-Anon, Crazy Stupid Love, Pottermore, Depression No-No's, Drones, Speidi & Achtung Baby

Another Week Ends: Terry Eagleton, Nar-Anon, Crazy Stupid Love, Pottermore, Depression No-No’s, Drones, Speidi & Achtung Baby

1. Over at PatrolMag, David Sessions posted a terrific interview with British literary critic Terry Eagleton concerning, among other things, “Capitalism and the West’s Existential Crisis.” The occasion for the interview is the release of Eagleton’s new book on Marxism. Of course, Eagleton is not your garden variety Marxist (thank God), and regardless of your political convictions, his reflections are a good companion to the “relentlessly depressing debt ceiling news,” as Sessions memorably puts it. For example:

Sessions: While we’re talking about belief, in your Terry Lectures at Yale in 2008, you described Christianity as both more gloomy than any other…

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The Seven Sacraments of Harry Potter, Part 7: The Deathly Hallows

The Seven Sacraments of Harry Potter, Part 7: The Deathly Hallows

Mischief managed! On the eve of the final film’s release, we conclude our Seven Sacraments of Harry Potter series with the final book’s namesake, The Deathly Hallows, the three folkloric and instrumental relics of magic which enable its beholder to cheat death, in costly ways. The Master of the three Hallows is the Master of Death. As a word of caution to those who have not yet read Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (for shame!), or would prefer not to be made aware of insights, theological or otherwise, related to the final part of the saga, this is your…

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The Seven Sacraments of Harry Potter, Part 6: Horcruxes

The Seven Sacraments of Harry Potter, Part 6: Horcruxes

As we enter the week of the final film‘s release, out this Friday in a theater near you, we finish our Harry Potter Sacraments series with two theologically potent elements, both of which are imperative for the saga’s conclusion. We’ll begin today with Horcruxes, the darkest of Dark Magic, and what they say about human malediction, and one’s desire for substitution. On Wednesday, we finish with the final book’s namesake, The Deathly Hallows.

Slughorn: “You must understand that the soul is supposed to remain intact and whole. Splitting it is an act of violation, it is against nature.”

Riddle: “But how do…

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The Seven Sacraments of Harry Potter, Part 5: The Mudblood

The Seven Sacraments of Harry Potter, Part 5: The Mudblood

As we continued our series last week with the Pensieve, so we move into Part 5: The Mudblood, the derogatory and tradition-favoring term used against wizards from non-magic families. A thoughtful and enduring device used by Rowling throughout the Harry Potter saga, the notion of race purity says a lot about our own sociological world, the inversion of that sociological world in the Church, as well as the world of faith in regards to the relationship between law and acceptance.

“No one asked your opinion, you filthy little Mudblood,” he spat.

Harry knew at once that Malfoy had said something…

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The Seven Sacraments of Harry Potter, Part 2: The Mirror of Erised

The Seven Sacraments of Harry Potter, Part 2: The Mirror of Erised

Wands at the ready! We bring you the second installment of our series exploring some of the theological elements in the Harry Potter saga. You can find part one here.

And slowly, Harry looked into the faces of the other people in the mirror, and saw other pairs of green eyes like his, other noses like his…Harry was looking at his family, for the first time in his life…He had a powerful kind of ache inside him, half joy, half terrible sadness. How long he stood there, he didn’t know. The reflections did not fade and he looked and looked…

It is…

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The Seven Sacraments of Harry Potter, Part 1: The Scar

The Seven Sacraments of Harry Potter, Part 1: The Scar

J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter is arguably the most critically and commercially successful children’s series of all time. Over the course of the next month or so, leading up to the release of the cinematic conclusion, we’ll be taking a look at seven elements—some pivotal, some relatively marginal—of particular theological significance within the series. Accio posto!

“Inside, just visible, was a baby boy, fast asleep. Under a tuft of jet-black hair over his forehead they could see a curiously shaped cut, like a bolt of lightning.”

It has become the brand. The focal, jagged-tail P that now crosses the screen of X-Box…

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J.K. Rowling on the Fringe Benefits of Failure

J.K. Rowling on the Fringe Benefits of Failure

As I was searching the wonderful TED archive of talks the other day, I came across the address that author J.K Rowling gave at Harvard Commencement in 2008. (Aside – the TED site/community is a great resource IMO and very much worth your time). I’ve never read any of the Harry Potter books and am only vaguely familiar with Rowling’s personal history as an impoverished single mother who became a mega-star author. But I was blown away by her speech and would categorize it in the theology of the cross realm– e.g. calling a thing a thing. In twenty short…

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