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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


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Something Rotten in the State of Language

My latest article for Intellectual Takeout looks at the connection between Orwell’s Big Brother, the current presidential election campaign and the decay of language. http://www.intellectualtakeout.org/blog/decay-our-language-happening
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Spanish Interview

The Imaginative Conservative has just published an interview that I gave to a Spanish magazine. This is its first publication in English. http://www.theimaginativeconservative.org/2016/05/prison-racial-hatred-rational-love.html
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Europe in Crisis

An article of mine published in yesterday’s Catholic Herald, the UK’s largest Catholic newspaper, has caused a heated debate on the Islamisation of Europe. On such a heated topic, I am happy to have touched a raw nerve:   http://www.catholicherald.co.uk/commentandblogs/2016/05/19/a-christian-response-to-europes-crisis/
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Freedom of Religion

A little while ago, about a month to be exact, I ran across this item in the admirable web site, Today’s Martyrs: “In the United States the Georgia Department of Public Health is being sued by Dr. Eric Walsh.  In addition to his medical work Dr. Walsh is a part-time minister.  He had been hired by the department in May of 2015 and then had the offer of employment revoked several days later, after the…
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Making America Great

So what does making America great actually mean? My latest article for Intellectual Takeout offers an answer. http://www.intellectualtakeout.org/blog/how-actually-make-america-great
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Flirting with the Devil

My latest article for the Imaginative Conservative focuses on the wives of Oscar Wilde and G. K. Chesterton, especially their walk on the dark side, dabbling with the diabolism of the occult. http://www.theimaginativeconservative.org/2016/05/chesterton.html
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“Once Deeply Catholic, Modern Scotland Needs a Theological Revival”

“We tend to think of Scotland as a Calvinist country but a glance at history reminds us that it was once a very Catholic country. In “Once deeply Catholic, modern Scotland needs a theological revival” ( why the lower case letters I have no idea ), Tracey Rowland …… channeling George Mackay Brown ….. sets the record straight. An especially good sentence among many… “Brown reads the world sacramentally”…. speaks volumes. http://www.catholicworldreport.com/Item/4749/once_deeply_catholic_modern_scotland_needs_a_theological_revival.aspx  
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The Faces of Fantasy

Here’s a reminder that Joseph Pearce’s latest television special on JRR Tolkien (featuring yours truly playing the part of Tolkien himself) will air on EWTN at the following times … Tuesday, May 17 – 03:30 AM Eastern  Saturday, May 21 – 11:00 PM Eastern These times might be a bit awkward for many viewers, but rest assured that EWTN will release this special on DVD, which will be available from the Network’s Religious Catalogue. Meanwhile,…
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The Vocation of the Artist

This is from Etienne Gilson’s Choir of Muses, translated by Maisie Ward.  My emphases in bold. *** The writer does not choose, he is chosen.  It is another question whether he will have the courage to obey the call, but he has still heard a call even if he rejects it … He who hears it feels he is a “clerk” in the meaning given to the word in the Middle Ages [i.e., a cleric], that is…
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A Kiss Goodnight: A Game of Thrones Fan-Fiction Story

Disclaimer: This is an experimental fan-fiction one-shot based on the characters in Game of Thrones. I do not claim to be strictly following the books nor TV series, but rather elaborating on broad themes presented, and letting my own imagination take its course. That’s one of the beauties of fan-fiction; freedom of expression and expansion. Also, while there is nothing gratuitous, some references to sexuality may be inappropriate for younger readers. *** Tyrion entered Sansa’s chamber…
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On the Burning and Banning of Books

My latest article for Intellectual Takeout discusses the similarities of Nazis who burn books and narcissists who ban them: http://www.intellectualtakeout.org/blog/book-burners-and-book-banners-are-cut-same-cloth
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Aragorn’s Victory Song: A Lord of the Rings Fan-Fiction Poem

I see a fire behind your eyes That darkness cannot quell; As ashes from the mountain rise, You’ll storm the gates of Hell Mornie Utulie, Horo!   The ancient lava from the earth Is cool beside the flame That burns within a faithful breast And earns a man his fame Mornie Utulie, Horo!   The Evening Star shines on my path, Her voice rings in my ears, Her kisses, gold, rest on my lips, Her…