Category Archives: Bibliophilia

Sometimes, My Culture Makes Me Happy

The first Google hit for the word “preacher” is the Wikipedia article on the comic book series about the hick-town Texan preacher who fuses with the nigh-omnipotent bastard offspring of an angel and a demon and then goes on a quest with his gun-toting girlfriend and a hard-drinking Irish vampire in order to hold God accountable for abandoning the world.

Dear Messrs. Ellis, Ennis and Gaiman: can we please do the same with God? (You’re almost there with Lucifer.)

I was actually pointed to Preacher via two sources: a drunk bloke in an Irish bar full of expatriates in Lyon, and the webcomic Unshelved. Funny how the world works, ain’t it?

Now, off to get myself some cookies and finish reading Hector Avalos’s Fighting Words.

Unintended Consequences

I don’t think this is the outcome which the Discovery Institute wanted.

Background information from PZ Myers:

Oh, dear. John West of the Disco Institute is in a furious snit because, after refusing to grant tenure to Guillermo Gonzalez, Iowa State University did promote Hector Avalos, of the Religious Studies department, to full professor. You can just tell that West is spitting mad that Iowa would dare to keep Avalos around, and thinks it a grave injustice that one scholar would be accepted, while their pet astronomer gets the axe. So now they’re going to do a hatchet job on Avalos.

After reading about Avalos’s books Fighting Words (2005) and the forthcoming The End of Biblical Studies (2007), I decided to buy both of them. The former should arrive on the twenty-fifth and the latter a few days into June.

Being the amateur hack that I am, I’ll write up my impressions here after I’ve read what Avalos has to offer. Until then, I’ll be finishing John Allen Paulos‘s A Mathematician Reads the Newspaper (1995). Short take on it, so far: it has its good points, but it’s not as solid as Innumeracy (1989, new edition 2001) and Beyond Numeracy (1991).