The Warren & the World is Story Warren’s weekly newsletter, providing a round-up of our favorite things from around the web as well as a review of what was on our site over the past week. We’re glad you’re here!
Around the Web
Parenthood Gave Me a Black Eye
- I faint once every 10 years…The third time was last week. My daughter woke me up at 3 a.m. to help her use the potty. A few minutes later, I felt like I was going to pass out and I thought: “I’ll just get her tucked in bed and then I can lie down.” It turns out that was one thought too many.I came to a few moments later on the very hard bathroom floor, very sore (though not nearly as sore as I would feel a few hours later). I was lucky that the only thing I broke was my glasses.
What went wrong?
The Danger of Reading
- Actually, reading is dangerous—possibly in the ways we have been warned about throughout history, where our minds are tainted by new ideas and tempted by knowledge of questionable deeds, but mostly in the ways we are pushed to question and analyze and possibly even reject old notions for new ones. When we read, we change—a dangerous proposition indeed.
Bringing the Prairie to the Hood
- while accessible, the show was never appealing. The reason? I couldn’t get past the opening credits.Little white girls, with calico dresses dancing in the breeze, frolicking down a hill to the approach of smiling parents on a horse drawn wagon…nothing of the scene stopped the move for my remote control. The grinning and the prancing gave the impression of some happily-ever-after plot with no loose ends. Not to mention the unfamiliar setting of a 19th century frontier home–although this hurdle may have been crossed had the scene offered some hint of diversity in the cast. But no assurance was given, so I pressed the button to the next channel and cannot remember watching an episode of Little House on the Prairie before the age of thirty.I write today as a converted fan of the show.
The Overlooked Hope for Narnia’s Susan Pevensie
Joshua Rogers published this piece a few weeks back at Christianity today, and it’s stuck with me since i read it. He looks at Susan Pevensie, the one we’re told is “no longer a friend of Narnia,” and reminds us that even in her story, there is hope.
- “Where’s Susan?” asked my daughter as I read to her The Last Battle, the final book in The Chronicles of Narnia, by C. S. Lewis.Susan is the child queen who helped her siblings save Narnia from the White Witch in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. However, she is conspicuously absent from an early scene in The Last Battle that includes every character who traveled to Narnia as a child.“Daddy, where is she?” my daughter asked again.
“We’ll see,” I said, with a tinge of sadness.
Around the Warren
The Obscure Life of Lilias Trotter
Kelly Keller introduces us to a new documentary about a nearly forgotten artist in the 1800s–nearly forgotten because she chose obscurity.
- A few weeks ago I had the chance to see a screening of the biographical documentary Many Beautiful Things, about the life of Lilias Trotter. Lilias (from England, 1853-1928) was a talented artist early in her life, showing promise from a young age. She was mentored by John Ruskin, who at the time was one of the most celebrated artists in England. When Ruskin saw her raw talent, he told Lilias that she someday might be “the greatest living painter and do things that would be Immortal.”After Ruskin mentored her for a number of years, Lilias felt the call of the Holy Spirit to dedicate her life to missions, specifically to North Africa. She applied to a program to be sent, but due to her weak health, she was rejected. Since she came from a wealthy family and had the ability to support herself, she set out anyway, with two friends — to a harsh, unknown land with taxing weather and a foreign tongue. She stayed there until she died at the age of 75, having given her life for the women and children of the Algerian slums.
Loving the Lost Boys: Some Thoughts on Boyhood and Reading
Zach Franzen’s post on boyhood and reading may be one of the best things I’ve ever read on the topic.
- The attendees were overwhelmingly female school-teachers who hoped to get their books published. It is possible that the attendees at this regional conference did not adequately represent the twin institutions of education and publishing. Not all boys are educated by women who think that shiny beaded necklaces are a mandatory accessory, or who think that Dirty Dancing is a cultural treasure, but some boys are, and it’s a problem. Do Youth Publishing and Education alienate boys?Consider this:
The U.S. Department of Education reading tests for the last 30 years show boys scoring worse than girls in every age group, every year. Boys also perform worse than girls in writing according to the National Assessment of Educational Progress. A survey of students in 2012 revealed that 53% of girls strongly agreed that “writing is one of my favorite activities.” However, only 35% of boys felt the same. Because students first learn to read and then read to learn, literacy problems beget broad academic failure. In other words, boys who fail to read, fail to learn.
Something to Do with Your Kids
As you prepare for Easter next week, you might be planning to dye eggs. Here’s another option, too–make paper mache eggs using balloons!
And Something to Watch
I’m a big Rich Mullins fan, and this song is one of my favorites. I learned last year that there were folks in my small group who had never heard of him before. While I doubt that’s the case with many who get this email, I figured, it might be time for a refresher for some of you, Besides, it’s just a good song!
Thank you for reading. We’re on your side.