Product Type

Conversations

MARS HILL AUDIO Conversation 36

Juvenescence: Robert Pogue Harrison on Cultural Age

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Cultural critic and professor of Italian literature, Robert Pogue Harrison, examines the conditions in which cultural transmission can take place. In this Conversation, Harrison argues that Western culture is on the cusp of a new mode of civilization that can either result in a rejuvenation of the legacies of the past or in their juvenilization, the latter of which would lead to a loss of cultural memory and the infantilization of desires. Harrison reflects not only upon the ways in which our culture is evolving into a younger way of being human, but also upon the peculiar and precious qualities of youth that are uniquely receptive to fostering the amor mundi needed to preserve and transmit a world of permanence and belonging.

MARS HILL AUDIO Conversation 35

Glorious Abasement: John Betz on the Prophetic Critique of J. G. Hamann

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Theologian John Betz discusses the eighteenth-century philosopher and translator, Johann Georg Hamann, critic and contemporary of Immanuel Kant and other prominent figures of the German Enlightenment. Hamann, even from the early stages of the Enlightenment, saw and argued that the project of modernity would lead to its own destruction. Hamann argued that reason could not, by itself in a pure form, give a complete account of reality, for he saw that the modern ideal of “pure reason” is a fiction. Reason, he argued, is always embedded within an historical culture and language from which one can never fully be detatched. In his evaluation, Hamann anticipated the postmodern critics of the twentieth century; however, he avoided the nihilism of postmodernism by observing the revelatory character of language and history. By focusing on the divine kenosis or humility of God, who creates, reveals, and condescends to humanity through His Word, Hamann maintained that man’s pursuit of truth is always contingent on God’s Word in special and general revelation through history and creation. Throughout the interview, Professor Betz describes the centrality of God’s condescension in Hamann’s understanding of knowledge and reason. It is through the humility of God in his condescension to communicate to man that Hamann recognizes the Promethean project of modernity to attain enlightenment from man’s resources alone. $6

MARS HILL AUDIO Conversation 34

Mediated: Thomas de Zengotita on Postmodernity & the Flattered Self

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Ken Myers and Thomas de Zengotita discuss how the omnipresence of “representations”—forms of communication that have been deliberately manipulated and designed to address you—contributes to the widespread sense of entitlement and partiality for autonomous choice, resulting in what Zengotita calls “the flattered self.” Despite our unprecedented ability to “make ourselves,” the overwhelming flow of images, options, events, and stuff generates feelings of helplessness, apathy, ambiguity, and resignation, all of which are often evasively expressed in the multivalent utterance “Whatever.” $6.

MARS HILL AUDIO Conversation 33

The Practice of Christian Pedagogy: Volume II

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Language professor and pedagogue, David I. Smith, joins us again to discuss in more detail how practices in the classroom reinforce or contradict the goals of Christian teaching. The phrase “integration of faith and learning” has stimulated an abundance of scholarship on why faith and reason are compatible. It has also provoked extensive and various accounts of a “Christian worldview,” a phrase that often conveys a set of doctrines which, when applied to the goal of Christian teaching, places an emphasis on Christian belief over Christian practices. In this Conversation, David Smith argues that more attention needs to be given to the meaning conveyed in our methods and assumptions about teaching. Smith considers factors like body language and position; pictures and scenarios in textbooks; time, space, and sound in classroom interaction; and the cultural power of homework. 63 minutes $6.

MARS HILL AUDIO Conversation 32

O Come, O Come, Emmanuel: Malcolm Guite and J. A. C. Redford on the Advent O Antiphons

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In this Conversation, poet and priest Malcolm Guite talks about his seven sonnets corresponding to the seven “O Antiphons.” Also included in this Conversation is an interview with composer J. A. C. Redford who collaborated with Malcolm Guite to set Guite’s seven “O Antiphon” sonnets to music for unaccompanied choir. In these interviews, we discuss how poetry and liturgy invite repetition, and also how music can be an interpretation of a text so as to aid how one inhabits poetry over time. 45 minutes $6.

MARS HILL AUDIO Conversation 31

Unbearable Lightness: R. J. Snell on Acedia and Metaphysical Boredom

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In this interview, philosopher R. J. Snell draws from how Hanby uses the verb “noughting” to interpret boredom, and connects it with the capital vice of acedia—or its token symptom, sloth—to help us recognize how this particular vice captures the “mood of our age.” Snell argues that the metaphysical boredom of modernity is sustained by our deeply-held convictions about freedom and contingency, which view the former as necessary and the latter as offensive. Like a sulking child, the slothful prefer to choose nothing rather than accept the neediness and dependency implied by our finite existence. When this slothful posture expands to the metaphysical plane, boredom becomes the very denial of being itself or, in other words, the “noughting” of the world. 48 minutes. $6.

MARS HILL AUDIO Conversation 30

Rebecca DeYoung on Vainglory, the Forgotten Vice

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In this conversation, philosopher Rebecca DeYoung explains how the language of vices speaks to patterns or narratives in our lives in a way that is distinct from “original sin” and from “sin as moments or acts of rule-breaking.” Drawing from the wisdom of the Desert Fathers, DeYoung describes vainglory and the other “deadly sins” as capital vices from which more vices may materialize. 56 minutes $6.

MARS HILL AUDIO Conversation 29

Brand Luther: Andrew Pettegree on Martin Luther, Printing, and the Making of the Reformation

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It is often noted that Martin Luther’s Reformation could never have advanced the way it did without the technology of the printing industry. While the coincidence of Luther and the printing press undoubtedly contributed to the Reformation’s rapid spread, the printing world at the time of Luther was largely under the patronage of the Catholic church, and it was not inevitable, according to Andrew Pettegree, that “print would become an agent of insurrection.” In his book, Brand Luther, historian Andrew Pettegree shows how Luther’s facility for writing in German and his intuitive business sense not only spread ideas and incited controversy, but completely transformed the distribution model of the printing industry. 56 minutes. $6.

MARS HILL AUDIO Conversations

The MARS HILL AUDIO Conversations are extended dialogues with one or two guests.  With a typical duration of an hour, Conversations allow a greater depth of analysis and a more extensive exchange of ideas than do our Journal interviews.

MARS HILL AUDIO Conversation 28

The Practice of Christian Pedagogy: Volume I

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In recent years, Christian educators have rediscovered ancient ideas about how the head and heart interact. There is a relationship between the cultivation of affections, dispositions, and virtues, and the acquisition of knowledge. What we believe is inextricably linked to what we love and what we worship. What we love, in turn, is encouraged by practices: by the ways our bodies and imaginations engage the world of the senses. Christian educators are coming to question the idea that teaching is merely the transmission of ideas and are giving more attention to the formative power of classroom practices and the culture of schools. In this Conversation, David I. Smith, director of the Kuyers Institute for Christian Teaching and Learning at Calvin College, discusses some new insights on the practice of Christian pedagogy. 56 minutes. $6.

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