T Nation

The PWI Required Reading List


Of course you’re right–religious litmus tests are a no-no in these parts. But this fact detracts from Dreher’s stated concerns. That is, if in fact a Christian is discriminated against because of his/her religious views, the full weight of the EEOC would be behind them in seeking redress. So, assuming the religious individual has no compunction about performing a job that requires actions that run counter to their beliefs, no one will even know what their beliefs are, much less fire/fail to hire them.

I’m no lawyer, but I suspect even inquiring about such issues (assuming they aren’t directly relevant to the job in question) would be illegal in most cases. Again, given the EEOC, I don’t see how the views of conservative Christians will preclude them from being hired.

OTOH, I wonder what Dreher would say about ‘his sort of Christian’ applying for a job where there would be a conflict between their beliefs and their duties.

Damn, that was a dumb thing for me to say. I may have to dredge that exchange up so I can figure out what (if anything) I was thinking.


I meant to thank you for this. I like both Bonhoeffer and Tillich very much.

Cool story. Book related.

I was walking to meditation with one of my best friends last night and we were talking books a bit. I told her I’d read Tillich’s book, and that it’s based on his lectures at Yale (she’s a Yale alumna, which has been fun for us). She stopped me and told me her grandfather was lifelong best friend to Tillich. They knew each other as boys in Germany, then both immigrated to the US. Fortunate for her grandfather who was a Jewish physician with the wherewithal to flee not long after Hitler came to power. Tillich was giving speeches in Germany at the time that put him in conflict with Hitler, causing him to be dismissed from his university post when Hitler became Chancellor in 1933, and so these two friends both ended up in the US in the early 1930s, Tillich at Columbia. Anyway, that was fun to hear. My friend and her family have visited the childhood home of Tillich in Berlin. She was a German correspondent for Time magazine.

Anyway, how’s that for six degrees from Kevin Bacon?


That is too cool!


I was so surprised! She’s not a religious person, so I brought it up mainly because I wanted to know if she was familiar, and to talk philosophy advice with her a bit, since I don’t have a very deep philosophy background. It’s the third time this year that I’ve found out I had some strange connection to a person in book I was reading, or it’s author. The world sometimes seems very small.


Back to the thread. Not a book, but relevant to PWI and the history buffs here. We’ve been watching this and the film footage is just stunning. It’s available on Netflix instant stream now.

The sheer scope of that war is just unreal. All those beautiful young men from all sides, swept away by the actions of a few. I thought of this.

But I have seen them too. In the pools when the candles were lit. They lie in all the pools, pale faces, deep deep under the dark water. I saw them…noble faces and sad. Many faces proud and fair, and weeds in their silver hair… - Tolkien



Kingfish is a superb book. Instructive for how a totalitarian can arise even in mature democracies. The book is disquieting as, at least early in his career, I could empathise with the desire to see him in office.

A very dangerous and sinister man who made a state his kingdom, and who was assassinated long before he burned out.

Wholehearted recommendation.


I’ve touched the bullet holes in the wall where he was assassinated.


Are you Louisianan, ED?

If you ever head over to Ireland you can touch the bullet holes where the 1916 rising ended. Makes the history quote visceral.


Yup. And it so happens, a significant component of my ancestry is Irish to boot.


A trip to Louisiana is on my bucket list, even if the heat will cause me to erupt into flames.

Any idea which county in Ireland? Regardless, it gives us a genetic predisposition to alcoholism, poetic pathos, and an irrational suspicion of the English, so I know you much better now. :smiley:


Concerns re spontaneous combustion are largely unfounded. The ~100% humidity significantly raise the flash point, and the unrelenting breeze caused by billions of beating mosquito wings is like a cooling ocean breeze. Besides, you’ll probably get et by a gator before you have a chance to combust.

You would be welcome to visit Castle EyeDentist on any trip Loozyanna way, though I should warn you I now live in the distinctly uninteresting northern portion of the state. (South Loozyanna = N’Awlin’s [and food!], Cajun country [and food!], bayous and alligators [you’re the food!], cities of the dead, antebellum mansions, etc. In depressing contrast, regarding matters both cultural and culinary, north Loozyanna is divided roughly equally between ‘west Mississippi’ and ‘east Texas’ enclaves.)

As for which county in Ireland we hail from, I’m embarrassed to say I don’t know off hand. I’ll check with the clan and see if anyone has that info.


Allow me to chime in suggesting several books for everyone’s consideration.

I’d say this is essential reading for anyone looking to understand Russia. It doesn’t capture the “heart and soul of Russia” but I believe it’s not very far off the mark, especially as it is primarily written for a Western audience.

Also, if you want to understand Russia, you have to understand the Empire and it’s many manifestations - Tzarist Russia/USSR/Russian Federation. Therefore, Montefieore’s book dwelves into the history of the Empire.

For understanding Middle East and the Persian/Parthian/Aechamedian Empire currently known as the Islamic Republic of Iran these books are a must:


Thanks for the list. Some great looking stuff in it.


With the tapestry you weave, how can i refuse?

Let me know what you discover, it will mean we are either the best of friends, or in a blood fued.


No one seems to know for sure (parent and grandparents on that side of the family passed away a long time ago), but there’s a rumor we hail from County Cork.

Friends or feud?


They make decent Red Ale, so friend it is!


Happy news! I am a Tyrone native! So no blood fued for you, Puff.


On a side note, one cannot have a proper religious/ethnic feud with you Americans. Seriously.

For your guys ethnic heritage and religion is at best an interesting tidbit, a conversation starter or a mini-anthropology study for history buffs.

How many times I’ve had an conversation with someone from the US, especially those hyphen Americans:

“Oh, on my father’s side I’m X so I got this tattoo with Y cos I’m so proud about my heritage”

“Wow. That’s great. Back in the old country you’d be murdered five times over because of it”

Some may argue that this is a prime example of what makes America great but I’m saying you’re missing out on a lot of stabbings, glassings and those proper bloody ethnic feuds that last centuries.


I never leave home without mine. Makes me feel at home wherever I am.


That’s very COOL, @Legalsteel!

Whew! I’m really relieved that we don’t have to be mortal enemies. I wish we still had family ties there, but we’ve lost all contact with any relatives that might have stayed.

It is. America is a miracle.

The New Colossus
By Emma Lazarus

Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
“Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she
With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”