Fascinating Facts about Sigrid Undset Part 3: American Exile and Return to Norway

On the evening  of April 7, 1940, two days before the Nazis invaded Sigrid Undset's homeland, the Nobel prizewinner was in Oslo speaking at a meeting of the Norwegian Students' Association.  The guest of honor was Catholic Worker co-founder Dorothy Day. Neither woman could have imagined that they'd  meet again, but two nights after the … Continue reading Fascinating Facts about Sigrid Undset Part 3: American Exile and Return to Norway

Flight from Norway: Fascinating Facts about Sigrid Undset, Part 2

Norwegian writer Sigrid Undset deserves her place among women held up as models of greatness simply for her accomplishment as the author of Kristin Lavransdatter, the medieval trilogy for which she won a Nobel Prize in 1928.  But there is so much more.  Part I details her life up to her reception of the prestigious … Continue reading Flight from Norway: Fascinating Facts about Sigrid Undset, Part 2

Fascinating Facts about Sigrid Undset, Author of Kristin Lavransdatter

  I'm indebted to Thomas More College literature professor Anthony Esolen for being the first to make me ponder why Sigrid Undset so seldom appears on lists of women offered as role models for girls aiming for greatness. Reading The Art of Compassion: A Biography of Sigrid Undset by Yola Miller Sigerson, I now consider … Continue reading Fascinating Facts about Sigrid Undset, Author of Kristin Lavransdatter

3 Reasons to Make Time for Undset’s Kristin Lavransdatter

Kristin Lavransdatter was recently released in an Audible edition, and it's included in a Washington Post review of the best new audiobook releases. I recently finished this Nobel-winning trilogy and used a credit on the 44 hour listen anyway.  That's how compelling this story is. The length of the trilogy deterred me for years, but … Continue reading 3 Reasons to Make Time for Undset’s Kristin Lavransdatter

Don’t Fear the Forge: In Which The Benedict Option Mingles with a Rock Book and a Yeats Poem

While immersed in Rod Dreher's much-discussed The Benedict Option: A Strategy for Christians in a Post-Christian Nation a few weeks ago, a children's book startled me with a hopeful connection. My son's kids had come to visit and I'd turned to reading nature books with them, but as we read and baked and played and … Continue reading Don’t Fear the Forge: In Which The Benedict Option Mingles with a Rock Book and a Yeats Poem

Marilynne Robinson’s Gilead: A Merciful Mind for Our Contentious Time

Marilynne Robinson's Pulitzer-prizewinning Gilead is a book for our contentious time. I'd picked up a copy when it first became a best seller, but this year when I went through my shelves looking for books I'd bought but hadn't yet read, its weathered green spine beckoned. When I broke the book open, Gilead began the … Continue reading Marilynne Robinson’s Gilead: A Merciful Mind for Our Contentious Time

Scorsese’s Silence: A Four-Question Examination of Conscience

Anyone who missed Martin Scorsese's big-screen interpretation of Shusaku Endo's novel Silence hasn't had much of a wait for its video release. Having read the haunting novel several years ago, I jumped at the chance to experience the screen version when SILENCE appeared on the marquee of my small-town theater during Lent. I knew its dark … Continue reading Scorsese’s Silence: A Four-Question Examination of Conscience

The Fishermen and the Risen Christ: 153 Reasons Why I Love and Believe the Story

The first paragraph of Norman Maclean's A River Runs Through It delighted me with its authenticity when I opened the book on a camping trip many summers ago. "In our family, there was no clear line between religion and fly fishing," the narrator begins, noting that his father was a minister who tied his own … Continue reading The Fishermen and the Risen Christ: 153 Reasons Why I Love and Believe the Story

Annie Dillard: Silence and Speaking Stones

Annie Dillard has long been one of my very favorite writers, with Pilgrim at Tinker Creek and An American Childhood among my most beloved books. Dillard leaves me alive and awake, grateful for each feather that falls beneath my back-yard juniper, for the sunrise glow illuminated through spring-snow icicles on the crab apple branches.  For … Continue reading Annie Dillard: Silence and Speaking Stones

Need Evidence? Three Reasons to Increase Your Positive Speech

Overcoming our negative speech habits is so challenging that it's tempting to stop working on it.  We fail, and that's discouraging.  We're only human, after all. Why keep trying? When our good intentions evaporate and the truth conveyed by saints and scripture no longer inspires, we can always check out what researchers say about speech.  … Continue reading Need Evidence? Three Reasons to Increase Your Positive Speech