26 June 2008

random update

First I create a Facebook blog network and then I promptly stop blogging. Alas.

This summer, far from offering time off, has actually proven rather busy thus far: writing projects, teaching, conferences, family.

With regard to writing, my main summer project is to work on an essay concerning Harry Potter and epistemology. This is for a forthcoming collection of philosophical essays on Harry Potter within a book series on philosophy and pop culture. The deadline is August 15. In the meantime, I've got a book review to write and a conference talk to prepare, both before the middle of July. Fortunately for me, the conference only involves preparing one talk, concerning postmodernity and contemporary communication of the gospel. I'll present this as part of a Navigators event in Colorado Springs.

Among matters I've already accomplished, I did manage to pull together and send in a proposal for a conference at Villanova prior their submission deadline about ten day ago, though I'll have to wait to hear back from them to know whether to move ahead with putting together the presentation. If the proposal is accepted, I'll have until October to complete it. The topic concerns how Bonaventure and Aquinas built upon Augustine's account of prophecy within their overall theologies of revelation.

Presently I'm teaching a summer course that is a hybrid of class meetings and online format. The class began in mid-May and runs until the first Saturday in August. I'm also now teaching another summer course overlapping the first, starting earlier this week, meeting on Monday and Wednesdays nights through the end of July.

Also earlier this week, I spent time up at Princeton Theological Seminary at their annual Karl Barth conference, which focused this year on theological ethics. Speakers included Kathryn Tanner (Chicago), Nigel Biggar (Oxford), Timothy Gorringe (Exeter), David Haddorff (St. John's NY), Paul Nimmo (Cambridge), and William Werpehowski (Villanova).

One wouldn't have to be a Barthian to have found the presentations and discussions extremely stimulating and helpful, especially insofar as they drew up trinitarian theology and the biblical witness to reflect upon issues of ethics, justice, politics, economics, war, and agency. As always, conferences are also a great time to catch up with old friends and various acquaintances, as well as making some new ones.

Last week included a trip to New York City with Claire. It was the week between the end of her school year and the beginning of tennis camp and Laurel needed me to occupy Claire for a day so that she could get some work done. When I asked Claire how'd she like to spend that day she said, "Let's visit New York City!" So we did. We took the train into the city and spent most of the day wandering the Natural History museum, traipsing around Central Park, and looking around FAO Schwartz. Tomorrow morning we leave for a trip to Laurel's hometown of Williamsport in order to join with extended family and friends in celebrating her mother's 80th birthday earlier this year.

I have a half dozen or so blog posts started and languishing in draft form that I hope to get back to an post in coming days and weeks. Until then, I hope you enjoy these summer days.