Monthly Archives: July 2008

52 posts

Who’s afraid now? Academic intellectualism and the rejection of God.

This is a little essay I wrote back in 2003 after I attended the School for Criticism and Theory at Cornell University, my alma mater. Various discussions recently brought the incident back to mind. I had thought of submitting this to something like Harper’s but never did, so now I offer it to the web, still lacking in polish (more like dull, really, when I reread it, very spotty), but still relevant. “I have had […]

How would you like to date Targum Neofiti?

Maybe just the two of you, a nice dinner, maybe a little candle light…I am afraid I am talking about a different kind of dating. A friend pointed me to this YouTube video by Mark Driscoll of Mars Hill. (I will give Driscoll credit, I see that his blog has a series on Charles Spurgeon, who I agree was one of the greatest preachers ever to live.) There are lots of things that we may […]

Academic Sacrilege

Remember the “Frackin’ Cracker” debate? A biologist from U of MN mocked the Catholic community’s response to a student having removed a consecrated host from a service. Well Myers made good on his promise to destroy, mock, and desecrate a host if sent to him. Inside Higher Ed has a good round up of the results. Myers is a biologist at the University of Minnesota at Morris who has a national following for Pharyngula, the […]

New Wiki @

I (finally!) have the wiki set up at the Newsletter for Targumic and Cognate Studies. The idea is to have scholars contribute articles on Aramaic, Syriac, Targum, Peshitta, and other related subjects so that the site can become a reliable resource. The Newlsetter itself already has some targumic texts available in English translations, bibliography, and information about the International Organization for Targumic Studies. (I hope to have the bibliography in a searchable database at some […]

A less fervent time…

I have always struggled to find real redeeming qualities in Samson, other than killing loads of Israel’s enemies. Perhaps he is just a larger-than-life negative example. All of this brought to mind by today’s Watch Your Head, by Cory Thomas. Quincy, the young man, is trying to get up the nerve to tell his father, a pastor, that he has gotten his girlfriend pregnant. (Interestingly, given the Samson reference in today’s strip, just a couple […]