Everybody! Everybody! Part Two: Rod Dreher

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Good people, when The New Yorker profiles a guy who makes a case for Johnsonville, aka Branch Davidian North, aka JOB’s Driftless Dreamland, shouldn’t we take note and discuss?

Dreher is one of the reasons I sometimes wish I could stop by the Walker Percy Weekend. And oh look, it gets a mention in the piece:

One of Dreher’s favorite writers is Walker Percy, whose novel “The Moviegoer” often refers to a fictionalized version of West Feliciana parish, where St. Francisville is situated. (Every year, Dreher hosts a Walker Percy Weekend, combining lectures from literary scholars with crawfish, bourbon, and beer.) Binx Bolling, the book’s protagonist, is a young stockbroker who finds himself on “the search”—the search being “what anyone would undertake if he were not sunk in the every-dayness of his own life.” Binx explains, “To become aware of the possibility of the search is to be onto something. Not to be onto something is to be in despair.”


    • Broderick Barker says

      I dunno; the New Yorker piece seems to make it pretty clear that this is not some gimmick Dreher dreamed up to move books, not in the way that the headline of that piece was dreamed up to attract clicks, anyway. It was born of his life experience – the experience of moving his family for the sake of some perceived good outside of the economic.

      And saying that something is somehow not a thing simply because it finds its roots in the Gospel seems remarkably thick. Every authentic religious movement finds its roots in the Gospel, no? The movement is a response from people rooted in the Gospel to the conditions of their particular times. Given that American Catholics have spent the past half-century happily assimilating and believing that it was the way to go, that we could transform the cultural stew by marinating in it, Dreher’s message – and its reach – strikes me as remarkable.

      • Broderick Barker says

        That said, once you get past the headline and grabber, it’s a good piece – a defense, even!

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