Book Review: The Marriage Plot

The Marriage Plot: A Novel by Jeffrey Eugenides (New York: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2011. 416 pp) Born in Detroit, Michigan on March 8, 1960, Jeffrey Eugenides is a Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist and short story writer. As an undergraduate, he attended Brown University and later earned an M.A. in Creative Writing from Stanford University. Eugenides received the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Fellowship for a short story he wrote in 1986. In 2002, his novel, Middlesex, won the Pulitzer Prize and the Ambassador Book Award. Eugenides works on faculty at Princeton University’s Program in Creative writing and lives in New Jersey with his wife and daughter. The Bachelor/ette-ization of America As a seemingly perpetual joke, The Bachelor/ette television… Read More →

Film Review: Blue Valentine

Blue Valentine directed by Derek Cianfrance (Hunting Lane Films and Silverwood Films, rated R. 112 minutes) Starring Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams. The Anti-Reality of the Hollywood Divorce What kills a relationship? Hollywood typically answers this question in extremes. Too often, a marriage falls apart as a husband is unfaithful or a wife completely changes her personality. In real life, many relationships end with the passing of time. When people jump into commitments early, the warts and ugly spots of each person creep out and many marriages lose during the test of time. Sure, some relationships end over the big things so often depicted in Hollywood, but sometimes a marriage dissolves after many small-yet-irksome qualities emerge. With the film, Blue… Read More →

Book Review: The Sun Also Rises

The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway (New York: Scribner, 1926. 251 pp) Born in Oak Park, Illinois, in 1899, Ernest Hemingway began writing in 1917 for The Kansas City Star. He served as an ambulance driver during World War I and moved to Paris in 1921. While in Europe, Hemingway associated with a group of notable expatriates such as Gertrude Stein, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ezra Pound, and Ford Madox Ford. Noted for his terse prose, Hemingway’s fiction won him the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1954 and his work, The Old Man and the Sea, won the Pulitzer Prize in 1953. He died in Ketchum, Idaho on July 2, 1961. The Frailty of Human Relationships It is said, “You… Read More →

Book Review: God the Economist

God the Economist: The Doctrine of God and Political Economy by M. Douglas Meeks (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 1989. 272 pp.) Currently the Cal Turner Chancellor’s Chair in Wesleyan Studies and Theology at Vanderbilt University, M. Douglas Meeks is a renowned researcher on the relation of Christian doctrine to economic, social, and political theory. Dr. Meeks earned both his B.D. and Ph.D. from Duke University and studied as a Fulbright Fellow at Tübingen University. In his previous appointment, he served as the dean and professor of systematic theology at Wesley Theological Seminary. Dr. Meeks has authored 16 books and numerous scholarly articles. He is an ordained minister in the United Methodist Church serving as the Director of Wesleyan Studies and the… Read More →