evil coverIssue twenty of The Other Journal aims to address the topic of evil, both with regard to its obvious manifestations and its haunting opacity. At times our contributors lament the presence of evil and at times they call us to work against it. At times they analyze the Christian response to evil, critiquing it and offering some correctives, and at times they merely try to bring evil’s more insidious or systemic forms to light. These essays, interviews, poems, and short stories resist easy definitions and explication. They suggest that evil is not always as easy to name as we Christians might think and that we may even, at times, be its willing and unwilling accomplices.

It is our hope that by surrounding ourselves with all this ambiguity, by wandering into the wilderness, we may see a bit clearer. Evil may remain obscure, but perhaps we might be better positioned to glimpse its presence in ourselves and others, to strike out against its effects, and as Andrew W. E. Carlson says in the final essay of this issue, to “worship a God who breaks into all the corners of reality.”

Table of Contents

Tillers of the Ground
Poetry by Kali Wagner

Overcoming Lamech: Lament as Antidote to Violence
Essay by Branson Parler

Working through the Trauma of Evil: An Interview with Richard Kearney
Interview by Ronald A. Kuipers

The Banal Road to Perdition: Cliché, Political Failure, and What the Tea Party Can Teach Us
Essay by David Kline and Dan Rhodes

The Killer in Me Is the Killer in You: An Interview with Richard Beck
Interview by Chris Keller

The Terrible and Sublime Liturgy:A Meditation on Evil, Scapegoats, and Beauty
Essay by Agustín Maes

Burning Dog
Fiction by Mark Fleming

Evil Is What Humans Do: An Interview with Christian Wiman
Interview by Allison Backous

Open Your Eyes Wide: The Generous Vision of Marilynne Robinson
Review by Rebecca Martin

Bleakness and Richness: Christopher Nolan on Human Nature
Essay by Lauren Wilford

We the Village
Fiction by Chad Gusler

Randomness and Assurance: Does Everything Happen for a Reason?
Essay by Gregory A. Boyd

Thoughts on African American Theology and Suffering as Moral Evil
Essay by Anthony B. Pinn

Evil, the New Atheism, and the God of the Trinity
Essay by Jacob H. Friesenhahn

Race, Criminality, and the Divine Occupation: An Interview with J. Kameron Carter
Interview by David Kline

Religious Activism, the Living Wage Movement, and Occupy Wall Street: An Interview with C. Melissa Snarr
Interview by Brandy Daniels

Bloodline to Bethlehem: A Review of John Piper’s Bloodlines
Review by Brian Bantum

A Sense of Place: Flannery O’Connor and the Local Church
Essay by Andrew W. E. Carlson

O for a Thousand Tongues to Mutter
Poem by Jennifer Strange