Magazine April 22, 2013, Issue

Evelyn Waugh, Catholic Optimist

Evelyn Waugh: Fictions, Faith and Family, by Michael G. Brennan (Bloomsbury, 192 pp., $34.95)

Evelyn Waugh defies easy categorization. He was simultaneously a defender of social hierarchy and an anarchist (“He liked life,” his longtime friend Christopher Hollis once remarked, “to be full of disturbance”); a Catholic convert who had a gift for being a misanthropic ass; and a father whose defining paternal characteristic was, as his son Auberon wryly (and perhaps unfairly) put it, “his lack of interest in his children.” He was also a political conservative and an unapologetic aesthete.

His first two novels — Decline and Fall (1928) and Vile Bodies (1930) — show how a barbaric “modernism” displaced traditional English values,

In This Issue

Articles

Features

Books, Arts & Manners

Politics & Policy

On the Brink

Ginger and Rosa, an intense little coming-of-age drama from the British director Sally Potter, begins with three births: The mushroom cloud goes up over Hiroshima, ushering in the nuclear age, ...
Country Life

Roots Quest

It was not a tough winter in the country, but it was a lingering one, throwing frosts and squalls right through the equinox and beyond. Snow would fall, thin to ...

Sections

Politics & Policy

Letters

Have Some Compassion I write to express my disappointment at yet another paragraph in The Week devoted to transsexuals (March 25). If I recall correctly, this is the third such news ...
Politics & Policy

The Week

‐ On the basketball court over Easter, Obama shot 2 for 22. Must be the sequester. ‐ While a few state governments enacted new gun-control measures in the wake of the ...
Politics & Policy

Poetry

A BAD FIT The grapeshot of his words makes ribbons of Her vitals. When one hits a major vein, Her heart will burst, and finally her love Will recognize its efforts were in vain. He ...
Happy Warrior

Undead Reckoning

I try to resist the siren song of metaphor, luring the polemicist onto the gaudy rocks of glibness and meretriciousness only for his sturdy column to crack and sink 400 ...

Most Popular

Elections

The Post-Election Madness Gets Worse

On the menu today: Two lawyers who aren’t formally on the president’s legal team but who keep filing lawsuits on his behalf tell Georgia Republicans to not vote in the Senate runoffs; Michael Flynn endorses a call for “limited martial law” and a “re-vote” of the presidential election; and the ... Read More
Elections

The Post-Election Madness Gets Worse

On the menu today: Two lawyers who aren’t formally on the president’s legal team but who keep filing lawsuits on his behalf tell Georgia Republicans to not vote in the Senate runoffs; Michael Flynn endorses a call for “limited martial law” and a “re-vote” of the presidential election; and the ... Read More
White House

Trump’s Disgraceful Endgame

President Trump said the other day that he’d leave office if he loses the vote of the Electoral College on December 14. This is not the kind of assurance presidents of the United States typically need to make, but it was noteworthy given Trump’s disgraceful conduct since losing his bid for reelection to ... Read More
White House

Trump’s Disgraceful Endgame

President Trump said the other day that he’d leave office if he loses the vote of the Electoral College on December 14. This is not the kind of assurance presidents of the United States typically need to make, but it was noteworthy given Trump’s disgraceful conduct since losing his bid for reelection to ... Read More
Law & the Courts

The NLRB’s Humorless Insensibility

The text of the National Labor Relations Act does not, so far as we can tell, require the National Labor Relations Board or its personnel to have their sense of humor surgically removed. Nor does it prohibit the NLRB’s judicial proceedings from considering context, common sense, or elementary reality in making ... Read More
Law & the Courts

The NLRB’s Humorless Insensibility

The text of the National Labor Relations Act does not, so far as we can tell, require the National Labor Relations Board or its personnel to have their sense of humor surgically removed. Nor does it prohibit the NLRB’s judicial proceedings from considering context, common sense, or elementary reality in making ... Read More