The St. Austin Review (StAR) is the premier international journal of Catholic culture, literature, and ideas. In its pages, printed every two months, some of the brightest and most vigorous minds around meet to explore the people, ideas, movements, and events that shape and misshape our world.

From the Ink Desk Blog


Little Miss Frankenstein

Was Mary Shelley grappling with real life monsters when she was writing her novel? Here’s my answer: http://www.theimaginativeconservative.org/2017/08/little-miss-frankenstein-teenage-girl-caught-culture-death-joseph-pearce.html?mc_cid=3f70ba836b&mc_eid=eecc505670

Patrick O’Brian on Land

Supposedly people are drawn to fiction that fills a need in their lives, so that lonely women read romance novels, and, as Dorothy L. Sayers’s Lord Peter Wimsey observed in The Unpleasantness at the Bellona Club (1928), “dull men in offices read detective stories.”  Exceptions occur, so that men who have traveled a lot and who enjoy firearms tend to prefer adventure stories, from Treasure Island (1883) to King Solomon’s Mines (1885).  In that line…

Is Time Irreversible?

As odd as it might seem, many leading physicists ignore the fundamental laws of physics. This is shown in the latest post by Manuel Alfonseca, whose articles are always fascinating: http://populscience.blogspot.com/2017/08/time-illusion.html

An Extract from my New Book

The Imaginative Conservative has published an exclusive extract from my soon-to-be-published book, Heroes of the Catholic Reformation (OSV): http://www.theimaginativeconservative.org/2017/07/st-pius-v-battle-lepanto-joseph-pearce.html

The Tortoise and the Hare-Brained

The tortoise in the classroom, taking notes slowly in time-honoured cursive script, beats the hare-brained student whose fingers dance at lightning speed on the keyboard of his laptop, transcribing every word of the teacher. Is this counter-intuitive of merely common sense? My latest article for the Imaginative Conservative addresses the question:  http://www.theimaginativeconservative.org/2017/08/note-taking-hand-brain-joseph-pearce.html

Why Doesn’t Pope Francis Speak English?

 in Blog
In the Catholic Herald this past Thursday, Matthew Schmitz explains the hostile attitude of the Vatican toward the United States:   http://www.catholicherald.co.uk/issues/july-28th-2017/why-rome-doing-battle-with-american-culture/   Schmitz interprets the barely concealed disdain Pope Francis has for the United States in a broader, more historical context that’s much more illuminating than my mere reaction to the Pope’s refusal to speak English. It’s more than disingenuous to suggest that he simply never learned the language. English is the second language…

Arvo Pärt: The Spirit of the Sage

It’s rare indeed for a speech to bring me to the verge of tears. This marvellous short address by the Estonian composer Arvo Pärt is simply breathtaking. It’s well worth seven minutes of anyone’s time: https://cburrell.wordpress.com/2017/06/29/arvo-part-on-music-and-life/

Interview in Catholic World Report

Recently Paul Senz interviewed me for Catholic World Report about the recent production of my play, Death Comes for the War Poets. Here’s the link to the published interview:  http://www.catholicworldreport.com/2017/07/25/joseph-pearce-reflects-on-his-dramatic-verse-tapestry-about-two-war-poets/

Siegfried Sassoon brings his goddaughter to the Faith

The revival in interest in the life and work of Siegfried Sassoon continues apace. Having paid tribute to his legacy in my own play, Death Comes for the War Poets, I’m delighted to learn of a new opera, inspired by his life. This renewed interest has led to a very interesting article in the UK’s Guardian about Sassoon’s friendship with his goddaughter and niece, a friendship which led to the latter’s conversion. Here’s the link:   https://www.theguardian.com/music/2017/jul/25/siegfried-sassoon-opera-silver-birch-sister-jessica-gatty