New piece published in Mere Orthodoxy: "Befriending Books: On Reading and Thinking with Alan Jacobs and Zena Hitz"
I'm in Mere Orthodoxy with a long review-essay of two new books: Breaking Bread with the Dead: A Reader's Guide to a More Tranquil Mind by Alan Jacobs and Lost in Thought: The Hidden Pleasures of an Intellectual Life . Here's a section from the opening: If the quality of one’s thinking depends upon the quality of those one thinks with, the truth is that few of us have the ability to secure membership in a community of brilliant and wise, like-hearted but independent thinkers. Search for one as much as we like, we are bound to be frustrated. Moreover, recourse to the internet—one commonly proffered solution—is far more likely to exacerbate than to alleviate the problem: we may find like-minded souls, yes, but down that rabbit hole lies danger on every side. Far from nurturing studiositas , algorithms redirect the energies of the intellect into every manner of curiositas ; far from preparing a multicourse feast, our digital masters function rather like Elliott in E.