Sightings

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November 26, 2001
What or who killed the Pilgrims? I don't mean what literally killed them. Disease, want, and the perils of the wilderness -- not the Native Americans -- claimed many during the seasons "before Thanksgiving" after the Mayflower landed. I mean "what" and "who" killed them as icons, as legendary figures behind the day of national Thanksgiving just observed?  
November 22, 2001
After the events of September eleventh, it is both harder and more necessary than ever before to renew the sense of gratitude associated with the Thanksgiving holiday. The feast is often associated with the seventeenth- century Pilgrims at Plymouth, joined in a fall festival by Natives who welcomed them to these shores and rescued them from peril.
November 19, 2001
"How many Muslims (or Jews or Mormons or Christians) live in the United States?" For decades the Census has not been allowed to count noses to determine who is what religiously. So observers of American religion are left to their own devices to assess the size of denominations, and of claimed affiliations and preferences.  
November 15, 2001
As if to remind us that in every victory there is also defeat, another airplane fell from the sky on Monday, killing all on board, and an undetermined number on the ground. Pushed from largest-font status in the headlines Tuesday morning was what counts as good news these days, the retreat of Taliban forces from Kabul.
November 12, 2001
Sightings does not usually "do" international politics. We report on domestic implications, but the two come together more frequently these days.
November 8, 2001
In January, we will meet to consider whether criminals may be killed. The Christian faith recognizes two sources for reflection on such questions: One is the Bible, the record of God's self-disclosure to the community of faith.
November 5, 2001
Theologian Harvey Cox's article "The Market as God" (The Atlantic Monthly, March, 1999) puckishly and pointedly showed how much "market talk" matched theological talk, how often " the market" was being given attributes that usually were given to God, and how frequently the language of capitalism matched the languages of dogma. Some chuckled, others seethed.
November 1, 2001
The events of September eleventh illuminate starkly the distortions that hatred can bring to religious expression. Osama bin Laden and his colleagues have twisted Islam into into forms and for ends that mainstream Muslims do not support.
October 29, 2001
Most whose lives are devoted to something other than the study of ancient Christianity have never heard of Lactantius. I had not since my Ph.D. exams forty-five years ago, and had little occasion to remember him or find him relevant since then.
October 26, 2001
In response to the events of the eleventh of September, the University of Chicago has sponsored a series of lectures and discussions titled "9/11: Its Causes and Consequences." The following issue of Sightings is the third in a series of three articles adapted from an address, "The Intellectual's Responsibility and the Ambiguity of the Religions of the Book," delivered at one of these gathering

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