Thomas Hibbs
Thomas Hibbs
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Pundicity: Informed Opinion and Review

Latest Articles

Here's what college education should really be about

October 17, 2019  •  The Dallas Morning News

John Henry Newman, whom the Catholic Church officially declared a saint this week, is a model of sanctity and of the ways in which the life of the mind and the life of faith can be beautifully and happily integrated.

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review of Joker

October 16, 2019  •  Catholic World Report

Joker, amoralism, and the nature of violence

Because of scenes of graphic violence and because it is a film about a character whose own violence inspires violence, Joker, directed by Todd Phillips (best known for the Hangover trilogy) and starring Joaquin Phoenix, is one of the most controversial films in recent years. In its composition of individual scenes and in Phoenix's performance, the Joker is quite impressive. In the end, however, it is a film full of sound and fury, signifying nothing. It is certainly not, as Phillips has described it in rejoinders to critics, a film whose realistic presentation of bloodshed is instructive about the nature of violence.

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Teens are leaving the labor force, and it will hurt them down the road

September 17, 2019  •  The Dallas Morning News

Sigmund Freud thought that becoming a functioning adult had much to do with our ability to adjust to the "reality principle," the way the external world of people and things presses back against our will and limits the attainment of our desires. And in his book, The World Beyond Your Head: Becoming an Individual in an Age of Distraction, Matthew Crawford argues that, in a world dominated by technology, activity on screens and interaction through social media increasingly substitute for encounters with the real world around us.

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review of Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

August 30, 2019  •  Catholic World Report

In her book The White Album (Simon & Schuster, 1979), Joan Didion writes that "the Sixties ended... at the exact moment when word" of the Manson murders circulated. In his current film Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, which has just become the second best-selling of his career, Quentin Tarantino recreates the Hollywood of that summer, particularly of the days leading up to the murders.

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Thirty years later, do we know what 'Seinfeld' was trying to tell us?

August 23, 2019  •  The Dallas Morning News

Thirty years ago this summer, Seinfeld hit the airwaves with two rules, or anti-rules really, for its writers: no hugs and no learning. These rules turned inside out the tenets of the classic American sitcom, which were always about hugs and, more or less overtly, about learning.

A show seemingly about everything, from Keith Hernandez to Snapple, Seinfeld is in an important sense a show about nothing, as the tagline from the episode "The Pilot" makes explicit. It is a show about characters whose lives lack any fundamental point or meaning: no real connection to others (no hugs) and no direction whatsoever (no learning).

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Books by Thomas Hibbs

Cover of Rouault-Fujimura: Soliloquies Cover of Arts of Darkness Cover of Aquinas, Ethics, and Philosophy of Religion Cover of Virtue's Splendor Cover of Shows About Nothing Cover of Dialectic Narrative In Aquinas

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