Christianism: The Elephant in the Extremism Room

July 01, 2021

I contend that my subject matter is something of an elephant in our global room, but I should warn that it is equally a thoroughly unhappy one: religiously-inspired, revolutionary political violence. For nearly 20 years now, scarcely a day has gone by without reportage on Islamism. This type of...

Joseph Conrad’s The Secret Agent: Herald of Contemporary Terrorism? (Part 2/2)

May 20, 2014

What can a 1907 novel teach us about contemporary terrorism? Now, turning to other themes in The Secret Agent, these seem, equally, downplayed in critical discussion of the novel, yet central to debates about contemporary terrorism. With respect to the latter, three...

Joseph Conrad’s The Secret Agent: Herald of Contemporary Terrorism? (Part 1/2)

April 10, 2014

What can a 1907 novel teach us about contemporary terrorism? The modernist author Joseph Conrad "can be read," British philosopher John Gray provocatively argued, "as the first great political novelist of the twenty-first century." The case set out for this agonistic view in his 2002 "Joseph...

Remembering Belzec

January 27, 2014

To mark Holocaust Memorial Day, a look at one of the Third Reich’s nearly-forgotten death machines. This year marks the 75th anniversary of the Third Reich’s invasion of Poland — a date when most scholars argue that, under the cover of total war, Nazism’s so-called "Final Solution of the...