Contributor

Jonathan Chaplin

Jonathan Chaplin is associate fellow at the British public theology think tank Theos, adjunct faculty at the Institute for Christian Studies, Toronto, and a member of the divinity faculty of Cambridge University.

Why Do the Nations Rage?

Yoram Hazony’s dangerous defence of nationalism.

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Can Nations Be Secular?

Confining government to doing justice emphatically does not amount to saying that governments must “neglect all thoughts of God.”

A new take on Tory

In these days of ideological confusion, we are all scrambling to make sense of a political landscape more fluid and difficult to map than anything since the 1930s.

“Street-level Justice”: governing metropolitan public space

What have bus purchases, or garbage collection, or zoning laws, got to do with lofty principles like justice? Just give me a bit more efficiency and I’ll go quietly. Issues of efficiency can’t be neatly cordoned off from issues of distribution, of access, of sustainability, of opportunity, of security, and of voice. It’s all about ordering the urban public realm justly, and it’s more relevant than most people think.

Blessed Be the Ties That Bind (continued)

Civil society as we know it today, then, rests upon the double achievements of individual emancipation and institutional differentiation. But in describing these as achievements, I certainly do not mean to endorse wholesale the manner in which they were historically realized. Indeed, the point of my hasty narrative is not to baptize but to problematize these developments…

Blessed Be the Ties That Bind

Civil society was not yet current in the 1970s when Berger and Neuhaus invoked the term “mediating structures,” but their widely read pamphlet To Empower People heralded what was to come. Observing with concern the pervasive power of bureaucratic megastructures… they urge a recovery of “people-sized” social structures which can shield individuals from their predatory power and supply a vital source of subjective meaning and social values.

Lessons from Old Europe

The U.S. government is not currently well-disposed to take political lessons from what Donald Rumsfeld has memorably dubbed Old Europe, least of all from France. And the recent vote of the French National Assembly to ban the wearing of headscarves by Moslem girls in public schools has hardly helped to mitigate American suspicions about the political wisdom of the current French establishment.

Reining in the State: Lessons from a very British affair

I was in Britain last July when David Kelly committed suicide in the rolling Oxfordshire countryside. Kelly was a leading government scientist and an acknowledged international expert on Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction (WMD) capabilities… Let’s stand back from the details of this episode and ask what it tells us about the principle of accountability.