Yes, there are earnest Christians engaged in writing serious literature---but their vocation is not an easy one. Holberg has collected a diverse crowd (e.g., Lamott, Norris, Campbell, Buechner, Lynch, Wangerin, Shaw, L'Engle, Betts, and Karon), who speak freely and honestly about their dilemmas. 240 pages, softcover. Eerdmans.
Flannery O'Connor once wrote that "to the hard of hearing you shout, and for the almost-blind you draw large and startling figures." Some of the twenty-one well-known writers included in this book prefer to "shout," as O'Connor did, while others offer what Doris Betts calls "whispering hope."
Shouts and Whispers contains a fascinating array of reflections on topics surrounding the often-perilous intersection of writing and faith. The authors all agree that literature can help us to be more faithful, yet they approach the subject in ways as diverse as their biographies. Some, like Katherine Paterson and Frederick Buechner, propose models of how literature and belief can fruitfully intersect. Several authors offer insightful metaphors for the experience of doing faith-filled writing, while others speak of writing as finding hope in the midst of brokenness. Finally, in essays by Madeleine L'Engle, Thomas Lynch, and others, readers are encouraged to make the connection between writing and embodiment, translating words into actions.
While the essays, addresses, and interviews in Shouts and Whispers are by no means the final word, they will provoke rich and nuanced reflection on the dynamic relationship between faith and writing.
Betty Smartt Carter
David James Duncan
James Calvin Schaap
Barbara Brown Taylor
Walter Wangerin Jr.
"There is wisdom here to be pondered and perhaps adopted."
"'Shouts and Whispers is for those inclined toward the writing life. . . The writers differ on many points, [but agree] that literature can help us to be more faithful."
Publishers Weekly Starred Review
"This collection should be required study for writers of faith and their readers."
The Covenanter Witness
"No two writers take the same approach, and therein lies one of the strengths of this collection. Readers will certainly not agree with every view expressed, either literary or theological, but anyone with an interest in relating Christian faith and creativity will find much to stimulate thought, and perhaps even action."
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