Quaker Universalist Voice

Speaking truth in the global public square…

Topic: Review

Higher Education Student Debt

A Book Review of Steven Brint, Two Cheers for Higher Education (2018)

Steven Brint, Two Cheers for Higher Education: Why American Universities Are Stronger Than Ever-and How to Meet the Challenges They Face (2018) is an optimistic and clarifying presentation of the strengths, weaknesses, and challenges faced by higher education in the U.S. and, by…

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The Role of Belief

A Review of James E. Alcock, Belief: What It Means to Believe and Why Our Convictions are So Compelling (2018)

We all have beliefs and are relying on them as we live our lives.  Should our Quaker beliefs be subject to assessment and, if so, how?  This feels to be a more urgent process in later life as we reflect back on experience, both personal…

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Pointless Human Suffering

A Book Review of Scott Samuelson, Seven Ways of Looking at Pointless Suffering (2018)

Suffering is a universal human experience. Some suffering is common to all humans (all ages, genders, and cultures).  Some suffering is unique to humans in particular cultures (honor killings, slavery, and female genital mutilation). …

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Help for Moral Injury: Strategies and Interventions, by Cecelia Yocum – A Review

The phenomenon of moral injury is currently being explored seriously in the areas of military service and torture experience, and it has been recognized as a genuine challenge by leaders of the U.S. Armed Forces branches and the Department of Veterans Affairs.

It is also becoming the object of broader serious discussion in areas of human experience relating to sexuality, abortion, child abuse and poverty.

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Tolerance & Intolerance: Two Timely Reviews

The Limits of Tolerance by Lacorne
American Intolerance by Bartholomew & Reumschussel

Our world is escalating toward the sort of brutal intolerance of “the Other” that led to World War II. This time, though, the government and people of the United States are perilously close to embracing that brutality themselves.

In this post we review two books that add to our depth perception regarding tolerance and intolerance, though without offering solutions. Denis Lacorne’s The Limits of Tolerance traces the history and vulnerability of the Enlightenment value of tolerance. Robert Bartholomew and Anja Reumschussel’s American Intolerance indicts the United States for its terrible history of official and populist intolerance toward each new influx of immigrants.

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Public Apology and Reparations

Sorry About That: The Language of Public Apology
by Edwin L. Battistella – A Review

Edwin L. Battistella’s book Sorry About That is a compilation and analysis of stories of pubic apologies in the primarily U.S. experience. Leaders everywhere make apologies, yet apology-phobia is a global disability. Apology is complex in human relationships. Effective public apologies are even more complex. Public apologies differ with cultural context, just as personal apologies differ in language and timing.

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