Richard Rodriguez is a Mexican-American writer from California who is also a gay Roman Catholic man. Rodriguez’ new book, Darling; A Spiritual Autobiography, Call Number 282.092 Rod 2013, covers such diverse topics as desert spirituality, the death of a friend from AIDS, the tour de France, Cesar Chavez, disappointment in San Francisco, modern journalism and the color brown. Rodriguez’ longest chapter is entitled “Darling,” where he attempts to explain his feelings about women, and Judeo-Christian positions on the nature of women. Rodriguez is a very good poetic writer, though he does ramble.
Mark Larrimore, The Book of Job : A Biography, Call Number 223.106 Lar 2013, links the story of Job to all the big issues of religion and morality. Larrimore begins with ancient Jewish limits on arguing with God as compared to early Christian notions of Christ’s sacrifice for the salvation of mankind, which resolved the need for arguments with God. He covers medieval and early modern debates over the role of evil in the world and the modern debate over atheism and the question of God’s existence. He ends with the use of Job in philosophical reflections on twentieth century political disasters, such as the Holocaust. Along the way, Larrimore touches on the interpretation of the Book of Job through drama and visual art, poetry and prose, as well as the general effects of rationalism and historical criticism on the interpretation of Scripture. Although Larrimore can be difficult for the general reader to follow, he makes a convincing case that the story of Job introduces all the difficult questions of Western philosophy, as well as Jewish and Christian theology. Given Larrimore’s emphasis on visual depictions of Job’s story, it is unfortunate that Princeton University Press choose to print his book in a reduced size with inadequate reproductions of the author’s illustrations. Larrimore’s book deserves a better format.
Father Robert Clarke has donated two beautiful art books to the Library. Christopher de Hamel, A History of Illuminated Manuscripts, Call Number 745.67 Deh 1994; and Kurt Weitzmann, The Icon : Holy Images - Sixth to Fourteenth Century, Call Number 704.948 Wei 1978, can be found in the collection of oversized art books on the counter by the northeast wall of the Library. Art books generally are for pursual in the Library and can not be checked out. However, special arrangements can be made for artists who wish to check out an art book for short-term use as an inspiration for their own artistic work. Similar arrangements are available to preachers.
A number of new books are in the collection, especially regarding Navajo and Native American spirituality.
We have also received some generous donations of works in theology and church history from retired clergy.