John Chrysostom

The Reason for Everything
January 16, 2006

The Victory of Reason: How Christianity Led to Freedom, Capitalism, and Western Success By Rodney Stark (Random House, 304 pp., $25.95) "Had the followers of Jesus remained an obscure Jewish sect," concludes Rodney Stark in his new book, "most of you would not have learned to read and the rest of you would be reading from hand-copied scrolls." I had always known that Jesus Christ was a pretty important person, but I had not quite realized that were it not for him, there would be no one to buy Rodney Stark's books. Jesus, Stark goes on, is responsible for more than liberating us from scrolls; t

The Athletic Hero
September 19, 1983

Sport and the Spirit of Play in American Fiction: Hawthorne to Faulkner Christian K. Messenger From the dawn of time, the "hero" seems always to have been an athlete. Gilgamesh outwrestling Enkidu to prove who was strongest in Uruk is by no means a unique example. Perhaps the only trait d'union between the heroes of the two great Homeric epics is their common respect for sport.