I began hearing the question in seminary. It became louder as I started writing. “Who will be the next Reinhold Niebuhr?” In 1948, Niebuhr was on the cover of Time Magazine. He commented on politics, and since his death in 1971, his voice has been missing from popular discourse.
Anti-feminist sentiment, misbehaving athletes, racist images, and student safety concerns all manifested themselves in one way or another during the 2014–2015 academic year at the University of Mary Washington. Now that the annus horribilis is over, new challenges present themselves. President Rick Hurley recently announced recommendations, including a series of discussions on civility.
There are some advantages to teaching online. Often instructors complain that the online format robs them of give-and-take moments with students. But given the current size of many history survey sections—50, 90, 300, even 500 people—how realistic is it to expect those real-time opportunities for conversation? Online threaded discussions are often more substantive, inclusive, and productive than the traditional classroom format.
Readers may or may not accept Charles Hefling's reconstruction of the doctrine of original sin. But he continues the tradition of rethinking the faith in light of new knowledge, contexts, and concerns.
In this issue Rebekah Miles describes the key role that Ursula Niebuhr played in the development of her husband's
thinking and writing ("Uncredited").
The article sent me to the bookshelf for Elisabeth Sifton's fascinating account of her parents' life together.