Tag Archives: pop culture

Bede, Star Wars, and Ascension Day

This morning I was pleasantly elated to discover a fact of the calendar and a trio of celebrations coming together. Today, on May 25, 2017 we get to commemorate three major events simultaneously: Bede’s Day, the 40th anniversary of Star Wars, and Ascension Day! This is just a happy coincidence in the way that these celebrations fall in the calendar. […]

King Elizabeth and Identity Politics

Showing this month at the The Sandra Feinstein-Gamm Theatre in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, is the play King Elizabeth. Written and directed by the Gamm’s Artistic Director, Tony Estrella, King Elizabeth is a 21st-century adaptation of Friedrich Schiller’s 18th-century Mary Stuart, about the imposing 16th-century Queen Elizabeth I of England and Mary, Queen of Scots. The play stars Jeanine Kane […]

Will the Real King Arthur Please Rise?

This week we’ll witness the release of yet another movie about perhaps the most famous ruler from the medieval period, King Arthur. The film, directed by Guy Ritchie, is titled King Arthur: Legend of the Sword. From what is shown in the trailer, the story depicts the rise of Arthur (Charlie Hunnam) from nobody orphan to leader of the people pitted against tyrannical […]

Medieval Religion and Political Engagement, Part 3: Monasticism

[This post is part of an ongoing series, inspired by the upcoming presidential election in the United States, seeking to answer the question: What does the medieval period have to tell us about Christianity and political engagement? For previous posts, see Part 1 and Part 2.] When we think of the medieval period and religion, one of the […]

Medieval Religion and Political Engagement, Part 2: Biblical Precedents

[This post is part of an ongoing series, inspired by the upcoming presidential election in the United States, seeking to answer the question: What does the medieval period have to tell us about Christianity and political engagement? For an introduction to the series, and some general examples, see Part 1; for the next post in the series, […]

Medieval Religion and Political Engagement, Part 1

I recently had a conversation with two of my pastor friends, Andrew and Rick, about the tensions between religion and politics, both in America and across history. A large part of this conversation revolved around the upcoming presidential election in the United States. At one point in the conversation, Andrew posed a question to me about […]

Medievalism in The Force Awakens

This week, one of the most highly anticipated pop culture events hit theaters everywhere: Star Wars, Episode VII: The Force Awakens. I saw the film as early as I could, and have a lot to say about it. Most specifically, as a medievalist, I was struck by a certain amount of medievalism built into this movie. I’m […]