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There's no sense engaging evangelical Christianity. You can't engage something like that, because they don't encourage interaction and thinking for yourself.
-Poet Joy Harjo, interviewed in the Indiana Review (Spring 1995)
Having heard Joy Harjo read her spellbinding, incantatory poems, I'd like to talk with her about her understanding of "evangelical Christianity." Perhaps this first issue of Books & Culture will change her perception. (I'll send her a copy.)
Then again, maybe not. Christians-not only the evangelical variety, but all those who affirm the central tenets of the faith-are distinguished precisely by their disbelief in the ability of human beings to think for themselves. The more strenuously, the more proudly a person proclaims that freedom, the more surely, like Raskolnikov, he is in the grip of sin.
Christians, of course, are not the only ones who, against the spirit of the age, reject the pretensions of the sovereign self and the seductive illusion of "freedom." That skepticism is shared by many in other communities of belief, and by some who remain uncommitted. In Books & Culture we want to bring these dissident voices together in conversation and debate, to wrestle with the meaning of timeless truths for our time and place. Welcome to the magazine for people who don't think for themselves.
John Wilson, Managing Editor
Copyright (c) 1995 Christianity Today, Inc./BOOKS & CULTURE Review