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Audition

Ken Myers

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Audition
Audition

Audition

Ken Myers

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Hosted by Ken Myers, each issue of Audition contains excerpts of interviews featured on various MARS HILL AUDIO productions. Guests discuss a wide range of topics, including history, philosophy, the arts, science and technology, education, and popular culture, all guided by concerns shaped by a Christian worldview.

Latest Episodes

Patrick Deneen on democracy and liberalism

InDemocratic Faith (Princeton University Press, 2005), political theorist Patrick Deneenexamined what he saw as a state of crisis and a sense of quiet desperation underlying much of contemporary democratic theory. At the end of thismonth, St. Augustine’s Press will publish a collection of Deneen’s essays entitled Conserving America?: Essays on Present Discontents. In those essays, Deneen advances the case that our discontent, anxieties, and uncertainties are due to problems in the basic liberal principles embedded in the American Constitutional order. In a lecture given in 2010 examining the relationship between community, culture, and liberalism, Deneen offered this summary of the origins and nature of classical liberalism. Liberalism begins with the political philosophy of Hobbes, with refinement by John Locke, with the idea that humans by nature are naturally free and equal. These thinkers sought to describe the natural human condition to be one of autonomous and whole individu...

26 MIN2016 NOV 17
Comments
Patrick Deneen on democracy and liberalism

Kenneth Craycraft, Jr., on religious liberty

Attorney Kenneth Craycraft, Jr. is the author ofThe American Myth of Religious Freedom (Spence Publishers, 1999). In that book, Craycraft arguedthat the protection for religious freedom guaranteed in the Constitution is not as vigorous as many believers may hope. The underlying assumptions in 18th-century Anglo-American thought about the nature of freedom, of political authority, and of religion itself were even then predisposed to favor the interests of the state over religious claims if they came into conflict. Craycraft observesthat the liberal understanding of religious liberty is the freedom of individuals to choose from among a profusion of faiths. Religious liberty is thus just one expression of the fundamental fact of human nature and dignity as understood by liberalism: that we are beings with the capacity to make choices. Some religions, however, hold to the conviction that the most fundamental fact about us is that we are creatures made to glorify God and to live in accor...

28 MIN2016 NOV 12
Comments
Kenneth Craycraft, Jr., on religious liberty

Michael Hanby on technological politics

In an article entitled “A More Perfect Absolutism” published in the October, 2016 issue of First Things, philosopher Michael Hanby observed that: “It is part of the absurdity of American life that we decide questions of truth under the guise of settling contests of rights. Which means that we decide questions of truth without thinking deeply or even very honestly about them.” One reason this deciding process is a particularly American convention is that Americans “have no common faith, history, or culture outside the decision to found the nation on eighteenth-century philosophical principles, we have always looked to politics and the law to perform the work of faith, culture, and tradition in giving us an identity as a people.” But what happens when politics that are all we know fails us? Unfortunately, those eighteenth-century philosophical principles (i.e. political liberalism) are deeply committed to certain metaphysical assumptions about nature. These assumptions treat nat...

25 MIN2016 NOV 5
Comments
Michael Hanby on technological politics

Michael Sandel & Scott Moore on liberalism

“Our public life is rife with discontent.” So claims political philosopher Michael Sandel, in his 1996 book Democracy’s Discontent: American in Search of a Public Philosophy. Sandel identifies two prominent symptoms of that discontent. “One is the fear that, individually and collectively, we are losing control of the forces that govern our lives. The other is the sense that, from family to neighborhood to nation, the moral fabric of community is unraveling around us.” Sandel’s book examines the ideas of liberty that have spawned what he calls “unencumbered selves,” atomistic individuals with no abiding sense of responsibility, duty, or binding attachments. The political mechanism that encourages this care-free sensibility is what Sandel calls the “procedural republic,” the product of a view of the state that envisions government as a guarantor of rights and fairness, scrupulously indifferent to questions of truth or goodness. This issue of Audition includes excerpts from a...

23 MIN2016 OCT 29
Comments
Michael Sandel & Scott Moore on liberalism

Peter J. Leithart on the 2016 election

In the second of a MARS HILL AUDIOseries of special interviews examining politics and theology, theologian Peter J. Leithart (Between Babel and Beast: America and Empires in Biblical Perspective) discusses some of the issues raised explicitly during the current presidential campaign and the failure of many voters and observers to ask how the explosive mood of the present moment reveals deep problems in American political culture. In a recent on-line commentary, Leithart observed that “contemporary political culture is the product of a convergence of two strains of liberalism: a leftist cultural libertarianism that took off during the 1960s and 1970s, and a rightwing free-market liberalism that reached its apogee with the Reagan-Thatcher alliance.” Leithart continued: “Though they come from opposite ends of the political spectrum, both strains of liberalism are founded on a concept of freedom as the emancipation of individual choice.” Leithart suggested that the sense of dismay m...

28 MIN2016 OCT 20
Comments
Peter J. Leithart on the 2016 election

Oliver O'Donovan on political theology

The campaign leading up to the presidential election of 2016 has been an unsettling season for many Americans. Against the disturbing backdrop of social and cultural fragmentation, the two principal candidates for the office seem to be equally divisive, so that whoever wins in November, we are certain to be living through a time of further discord and discontent. Is what we’re living through a sign of the failure of our political structures, or is it the logical outcome of a system with critical design flaws? Does a more hopeful future require the radical revision of some basic beliefs about the public life: about the relationship between state and society, about the purposes of government, and about how the ordering of temporal affairs accounts for the full reality of what we are as human persons? These and other relevant questions are finally theological questions, even if they aren’t always acknowledged as such. In the first of a MARS HILL AUDIOseries of special interviews that...

29 MIN2016 OCT 11
Comments
Oliver O'Donovan on political theology

John Pinheiro on the Mexican-American War and anti-Catholic prejudice

In his book,Missionaries of Republicanism: A Religious History of the Mexican-American War, historian John Pinheiro argues that much of the enthusiasmfor the war was tied up with an array of disparate theological and nationalistic convictions. Many Evangelical Protestants (including such celebrated figures as Presbyterian Lyman Beecher, a Temperance activist and father of Harriet Beecher Stowe) believed that God’s purposes for America included the development of and transmission ofthe virtues of Republican government. These activists and their followers believed that Roman Catholic teaching and practice, in beingopposed to republicanism, was thus contrary to God’s purposes in history. Pinheiro writes: “The religious history of the Mexican-American War of 1846-1848 is the story of how anti-Catholicism emerged as integral to nineteenth-century American identity as a white, Anglo-Saxon, Protestant republic. Americans had long wondered whether Providence had blessed them with North A...

8 MIN2014 OCT 28
Comments
John Pinheiro on the Mexican-American War and anti-Catholic prejudice

Richard Viladesau on theology through art

Since 2006, theologianRichard Viladesau has been working on a multi-book project that has been exploring the meaning of the cross of Christ in Christian theology and in the artistic expressions of faith. The first book in this series (all published by Oxford) wasThe Beauty of the Cross: The Passion of Christ in Theology and the Arts from the Catacombs to the Eve of the Renaissance. The second, published in 2008, wasThe Triumph of the Cross: The Passion of Christ in Theology and the Arts from the Renaissance to the Counter-Reformation. The third book, published this year, isThe Pathos of the Cross: The Passion of Christ in Theology and the Arts—The Baroque Era. In an interview with Ken Myers for the MARS HILL AUDIO Journal, Vilasdeau explained: “The arts were used as kind of illustrations or as kind of proclamations . . . for the service of God. The main intent was to serve as a mode of preaching, a visible mode of preaching in the case of the graphic arts or an auditory mode of pr...

6 MIN2014 OCT 8
Comments
Richard Viladesau on theology through art

Esther Lightcap Meek on the personal nature of knowing

In her recent book, A LittleManual for Knowing, Esther Lightcap Meek writes: “Knowing is a pilgrimage. It requires taking personal responsibility, born of love, to pledge allegiance to what we do not yet know. . . . Knowing is a gift. Epiphany comes as a surprising encounter, equal parts knowing and being known.” On this podcast, Meek talks with Ken Myers about how the conventional understanding of the difference between “objective” and “subjective” doesn’t do justice to the way we know the world as engaged subjects. This is an excerpt of a longer conversation with Esther Lightcap Meek that will appear on a forthcoming issue of the MARS HILL AUDIO Journal.

5 MIN2014 SEP 24
Comments
Esther Lightcap Meek on the personal nature of knowing

Audition - Program 12 (Deneen on Wall Street, Berry on Limits)

This issue of Audition features commentary by MARS HILL AUDIO host Ken Myers about recent on-line essays by political theorist Patrick Deneen. The four essays discussed were posted on Deneen's blog, What I Saw in America, and they each offered perspective on our current economic crisis gleaned from classical political philosophy. The essays were titled: "Abstraction," "Political Philosophy in the Details," "Whack a Mole," and "Democracy in America." Also referenced in Myers's comments is the 1976 book by sociologist Daniel Bell, The Cultural Contradictions of Capitalism. Patrick Deneen, associate professor of government at Georgetown University, was also a guest on Volume 91 of the MARS HILL AUDIO Journal; a portion of that interview may be heard here. In this interview, Deneen and Myers discuss the thought of Wendell Berry, whom Deneen describes as a "Kentucky Aristotelian."Ken Myers also comments on an article from the May 2008 issue of Harper's by Wendell Berry. Berry's article, ...

20 MIN2008 OCT 14
Comments
Audition - Program 12 (Deneen on Wall Street, Berry on Limits)

Latest Episodes

Patrick Deneen on democracy and liberalism

InDemocratic Faith (Princeton University Press, 2005), political theorist Patrick Deneenexamined what he saw as a state of crisis and a sense of quiet desperation underlying much of contemporary democratic theory. At the end of thismonth, St. Augustine’s Press will publish a collection of Deneen’s essays entitled Conserving America?: Essays on Present Discontents. In those essays, Deneen advances the case that our discontent, anxieties, and uncertainties are due to problems in the basic liberal principles embedded in the American Constitutional order. In a lecture given in 2010 examining the relationship between community, culture, and liberalism, Deneen offered this summary of the origins and nature of classical liberalism. Liberalism begins with the political philosophy of Hobbes, with refinement by John Locke, with the idea that humans by nature are naturally free and equal. These thinkers sought to describe the natural human condition to be one of autonomous and whole individu...

26 MIN2016 NOV 17
Comments
Patrick Deneen on democracy and liberalism

Kenneth Craycraft, Jr., on religious liberty

Attorney Kenneth Craycraft, Jr. is the author ofThe American Myth of Religious Freedom (Spence Publishers, 1999). In that book, Craycraft arguedthat the protection for religious freedom guaranteed in the Constitution is not as vigorous as many believers may hope. The underlying assumptions in 18th-century Anglo-American thought about the nature of freedom, of political authority, and of religion itself were even then predisposed to favor the interests of the state over religious claims if they came into conflict. Craycraft observesthat the liberal understanding of religious liberty is the freedom of individuals to choose from among a profusion of faiths. Religious liberty is thus just one expression of the fundamental fact of human nature and dignity as understood by liberalism: that we are beings with the capacity to make choices. Some religions, however, hold to the conviction that the most fundamental fact about us is that we are creatures made to glorify God and to live in accor...

28 MIN2016 NOV 12
Comments
Kenneth Craycraft, Jr., on religious liberty

Michael Hanby on technological politics

In an article entitled “A More Perfect Absolutism” published in the October, 2016 issue of First Things, philosopher Michael Hanby observed that: “It is part of the absurdity of American life that we decide questions of truth under the guise of settling contests of rights. Which means that we decide questions of truth without thinking deeply or even very honestly about them.” One reason this deciding process is a particularly American convention is that Americans “have no common faith, history, or culture outside the decision to found the nation on eighteenth-century philosophical principles, we have always looked to politics and the law to perform the work of faith, culture, and tradition in giving us an identity as a people.” But what happens when politics that are all we know fails us? Unfortunately, those eighteenth-century philosophical principles (i.e. political liberalism) are deeply committed to certain metaphysical assumptions about nature. These assumptions treat nat...

25 MIN2016 NOV 5
Comments
Michael Hanby on technological politics

Michael Sandel & Scott Moore on liberalism

“Our public life is rife with discontent.” So claims political philosopher Michael Sandel, in his 1996 book Democracy’s Discontent: American in Search of a Public Philosophy. Sandel identifies two prominent symptoms of that discontent. “One is the fear that, individually and collectively, we are losing control of the forces that govern our lives. The other is the sense that, from family to neighborhood to nation, the moral fabric of community is unraveling around us.” Sandel’s book examines the ideas of liberty that have spawned what he calls “unencumbered selves,” atomistic individuals with no abiding sense of responsibility, duty, or binding attachments. The political mechanism that encourages this care-free sensibility is what Sandel calls the “procedural republic,” the product of a view of the state that envisions government as a guarantor of rights and fairness, scrupulously indifferent to questions of truth or goodness. This issue of Audition includes excerpts from a...

23 MIN2016 OCT 29
Comments
Michael Sandel & Scott Moore on liberalism

Peter J. Leithart on the 2016 election

In the second of a MARS HILL AUDIOseries of special interviews examining politics and theology, theologian Peter J. Leithart (Between Babel and Beast: America and Empires in Biblical Perspective) discusses some of the issues raised explicitly during the current presidential campaign and the failure of many voters and observers to ask how the explosive mood of the present moment reveals deep problems in American political culture. In a recent on-line commentary, Leithart observed that “contemporary political culture is the product of a convergence of two strains of liberalism: a leftist cultural libertarianism that took off during the 1960s and 1970s, and a rightwing free-market liberalism that reached its apogee with the Reagan-Thatcher alliance.” Leithart continued: “Though they come from opposite ends of the political spectrum, both strains of liberalism are founded on a concept of freedom as the emancipation of individual choice.” Leithart suggested that the sense of dismay m...

28 MIN2016 OCT 20
Comments
Peter J. Leithart on the 2016 election

Oliver O'Donovan on political theology

The campaign leading up to the presidential election of 2016 has been an unsettling season for many Americans. Against the disturbing backdrop of social and cultural fragmentation, the two principal candidates for the office seem to be equally divisive, so that whoever wins in November, we are certain to be living through a time of further discord and discontent. Is what we’re living through a sign of the failure of our political structures, or is it the logical outcome of a system with critical design flaws? Does a more hopeful future require the radical revision of some basic beliefs about the public life: about the relationship between state and society, about the purposes of government, and about how the ordering of temporal affairs accounts for the full reality of what we are as human persons? These and other relevant questions are finally theological questions, even if they aren’t always acknowledged as such. In the first of a MARS HILL AUDIOseries of special interviews that...

29 MIN2016 OCT 11
Comments
Oliver O'Donovan on political theology

John Pinheiro on the Mexican-American War and anti-Catholic prejudice

In his book,Missionaries of Republicanism: A Religious History of the Mexican-American War, historian John Pinheiro argues that much of the enthusiasmfor the war was tied up with an array of disparate theological and nationalistic convictions. Many Evangelical Protestants (including such celebrated figures as Presbyterian Lyman Beecher, a Temperance activist and father of Harriet Beecher Stowe) believed that God’s purposes for America included the development of and transmission ofthe virtues of Republican government. These activists and their followers believed that Roman Catholic teaching and practice, in beingopposed to republicanism, was thus contrary to God’s purposes in history. Pinheiro writes: “The religious history of the Mexican-American War of 1846-1848 is the story of how anti-Catholicism emerged as integral to nineteenth-century American identity as a white, Anglo-Saxon, Protestant republic. Americans had long wondered whether Providence had blessed them with North A...

8 MIN2014 OCT 28
Comments
John Pinheiro on the Mexican-American War and anti-Catholic prejudice

Richard Viladesau on theology through art

Since 2006, theologianRichard Viladesau has been working on a multi-book project that has been exploring the meaning of the cross of Christ in Christian theology and in the artistic expressions of faith. The first book in this series (all published by Oxford) wasThe Beauty of the Cross: The Passion of Christ in Theology and the Arts from the Catacombs to the Eve of the Renaissance. The second, published in 2008, wasThe Triumph of the Cross: The Passion of Christ in Theology and the Arts from the Renaissance to the Counter-Reformation. The third book, published this year, isThe Pathos of the Cross: The Passion of Christ in Theology and the Arts—The Baroque Era. In an interview with Ken Myers for the MARS HILL AUDIO Journal, Vilasdeau explained: “The arts were used as kind of illustrations or as kind of proclamations . . . for the service of God. The main intent was to serve as a mode of preaching, a visible mode of preaching in the case of the graphic arts or an auditory mode of pr...

6 MIN2014 OCT 8
Comments
Richard Viladesau on theology through art

Esther Lightcap Meek on the personal nature of knowing

In her recent book, A LittleManual for Knowing, Esther Lightcap Meek writes: “Knowing is a pilgrimage. It requires taking personal responsibility, born of love, to pledge allegiance to what we do not yet know. . . . Knowing is a gift. Epiphany comes as a surprising encounter, equal parts knowing and being known.” On this podcast, Meek talks with Ken Myers about how the conventional understanding of the difference between “objective” and “subjective” doesn’t do justice to the way we know the world as engaged subjects. This is an excerpt of a longer conversation with Esther Lightcap Meek that will appear on a forthcoming issue of the MARS HILL AUDIO Journal.

5 MIN2014 SEP 24
Comments
Esther Lightcap Meek on the personal nature of knowing

Audition - Program 12 (Deneen on Wall Street, Berry on Limits)

This issue of Audition features commentary by MARS HILL AUDIO host Ken Myers about recent on-line essays by political theorist Patrick Deneen. The four essays discussed were posted on Deneen's blog, What I Saw in America, and they each offered perspective on our current economic crisis gleaned from classical political philosophy. The essays were titled: "Abstraction," "Political Philosophy in the Details," "Whack a Mole," and "Democracy in America." Also referenced in Myers's comments is the 1976 book by sociologist Daniel Bell, The Cultural Contradictions of Capitalism. Patrick Deneen, associate professor of government at Georgetown University, was also a guest on Volume 91 of the MARS HILL AUDIO Journal; a portion of that interview may be heard here. In this interview, Deneen and Myers discuss the thought of Wendell Berry, whom Deneen describes as a "Kentucky Aristotelian."Ken Myers also comments on an article from the May 2008 issue of Harper's by Wendell Berry. Berry's article, ...

20 MIN2008 OCT 14
Comments
Audition - Program 12 (Deneen on Wall Street, Berry on Limits)
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