Ad fontes, “to the sources,” was a rallying cry of the Reformation. The Reformers bequeathed to us a heritage, rooted in the Scriptures and their wide-ranging humanistic studies, which sought to address the hard questions of theology, philosophy, and culture in a way that was true to the revelation of God’s word and God’s world. Through this journal, we aim to channel this ethos into a modern context, seeking to explore our questions alongside the great cloud of witnesses and the many exemplars who have gone before us. The goal is to aid ourselves and our neighbors in the wise pursuit of common goods.
Ad Fontes is a quarterly journal (ordinarily, issues will publish in September, December, March, and June). Each issue will feature a couple of longer articles, plus a smattering of shorter articles, historical sketches, and book reviews.
In July 2021, we launched an independent website for Ad Fontes with a range of subscription plans. This has allowed us to significantly increase the amount of written content we produce, and has provided a comprehensive, user-friendly archive of past issues.
Volume V, Issue 3: Spring 2021
The decay of our social and political fabric is evident to all, left and right alike. This raises thorny questions for Christians: how do we think about our moral and political obligations given the instability, uncertainty, and decay all around us?
Few have explored these themes more profoundly in the medium of film than Christopher Nolan. Thus, our president, Bradford Littlejohn, kicks off a two-part series, investigating in the first installment the boundaries between justice and legality and the possibility of vigilantism as examined in Christopher Nolan’s magnificent Dark Knight trilogy.
Vigilantism is not, of course, our only temptation. Times such as ours can tempt us to revolution, particularly in the wake of the various social movements of the twentieth century, which embraced the rhetoric, if the not the reality, of revolution to an almost-unprecedented degree. Considering this, Miles Smith draws lessons for today’s Christians from the Protestant experience in revolutionary France.
Lest the political be theorized as superseding the personal, also featured in this issue are John Ahern’s reflections on Dante’s masterful La Vita Nuova and the centrality of the person. Rhys Laverty rounds out the issue, reviewing Joseph Bottum’s The Decline of the Novel and asking how Protestantism, the novel, and modernity are related.
IN THIS ISSUE:
The Return of the Vigilante: An Essay on the Possibility of Political Judgment
BY BRADFORD LITTLEJOHN
Protestants and the French Revolution”
BY MILES SMITH IV
La Vita Nuova
BY JOHN AHERN
The Decline of the Novel: A Review
BY RHYS LAVERTY