June 14, 2010

I talk to Eve Tushnet about sex, religion, and being the "freak of the week" in the New York Times.

21 comments:

traditionalguy said...

That was a stunning interaction between two top flight intellects. I really enjoyed listening to the ideas presented by you and Eve in such a civil manner. You both listened to the other and were civil in your responses.

EDH said...

Tushnet seems like a amiable novice in the sometimes harrowing talking head game. Althouse's kind and supportive efforts to patiently help Eve along in one of her first "test drives" reminded me of this movie scene.

With Kingsfield, no less!

Christy said...

Lisa See's novel Snow Flower and the Secret Fan describes a 19th Century tradition in China of contracts between 8(?) year old girls of good family binding them as best friends for life.

Nice job, Althouse.

veni vidi vici said...

Fishnet, tushnet; quel difference?!

Sixty Grit said...

That woman's voice is extremely annoying - she never learned to breathe and sounds like a strangled frog. Apparently breathing was not the only thing she never learned, but I couldn't make it through her video - speak from your diaphragm, woman.

WV: juggi. Make your own joke.

Trooper York said...

Jeeez, imagine how the fisherman felt when he caught that Tush in his net?

Trooper York said...

Gives a whole new meaning to "Deadliest Catch."

former law student said...

I will crassly note that her sister is a lot cuter.

As my whimsy leads me.. said...

I appreciated the discussion on friendship. What makes someone a friend? Why are some people always strong acquaintances, but don't cross the threshold to dear friend? What is that "friend" ingredient? It's not just common interests, being near each other--there is an extra Factor X that makes friendship kick in for me, even though I may like, appreciate, and enjoy the others. And, as in romantic love, it just isn't there if it isn't reciprocated. I mean, I have a hierarchy of friendships, and I don't really know what fuels it. C.S. Lewis wrote about friendship in "The Four Loves." I haven't seen much discussion in any other source except advice columns.
AA, you used to write more about your friends. I assume you are respecting their privacy with your rise in the blogosphere, but those old posts (Nina, Tonya, the blog dinners) were fun.

I mentioned once that your blog is like the old Mike Douglas Show. The pace of the interview reminded me of that, and of the old interview shows that were polite, interactive, less self-conscious. Another person--even you, in a more disagreeable subject--could have cut her to ribbons, but you facilitated a discussion, and were kind. It's a good thing she was matched with you for that format. Not every public or political conversation has to be a fencing match.

Toy

rhhardin said...

According to Thomas Mann, Kafka was a religious humorist.

Ann Althouse said...

@Whimsy People don't really like being a character on someone else's blog, especially when the blog is high-profile in a way that keeps them from having an equal voice in how they will present themselves to the world. No one has specifically told me that, but that is what I think.

rhhardin said...

Not every public or political conversation has to be a fencing match.

My experience with fencing matches is that they're very polite.

danielle said...

Ann's secular theory on sex and love (and marriage ?) is worthy of its own blog post.

Trooper York said...

"Blogger lady said....
@Whimsy People don't really like being a character on someone else's blog, especially when the blog is high-profile in a way that keeps them from having an equal voice in how they will present themselves to the world"


So true, so true!

As my whimsy leads me.. said...

AA and Trooper: That's what I figured. Absolutely right. And commenting on a friends blog would be kind of strange--with the possibility of icky. Glad they are still around.

Toy

Blue@9 said...

Hey, is she related to Mark Tushnet? I took a class of his once. Ask her if he's still a Stalinist.

Damon said...

Good job Ann at trying to tease out some interesting conversation. Eve holds some strange views and seems to think that they are only applicable to her.

So, there you have the portrait of a "non-judgmental" religious person. Not sure if her views are in any way useful.
Her view of religion, while strong in form according to AA, is really very weak in meaning. I don't know how the rules provide comfort for her when she thinks they are meaningless sacrifice. Yes, religion is personal, but the reasons behind religious 'rules' are there for our own good as well. That would have been an interesting discussion.

write_effort said...

Why doesn't ET make the case that only a person's first marriage be called marriage in both the religious and secular spheres?
When I was growing up in a small Catholic town, the church did not recognize the remarriages of divorced Catholics--I assume it's the same way today. That position didn't have any impact on the legal right of such individuals to marry again. Why not have the same position for gay couples: the churches can choose to recognize or not, but that has no impact on the legal right to marry. ET makes quite a twist into the secular world when she ends saying something like, well, men and women are different so their union needs to be called marriage and be somehow legally different than the union of gay couples. What are those relevant differences? Children? That's not the case in the real world. And how important is the protection of children if through annulment the church can rule that the parents were not really married in the first place.

Ron said...

I don't know if I agree with Ann and Trooper. We're all spear carriers in each others psychodramas -- blogged or not.

Trooper York said...

Wait a minute. I don't agree with the blogger lady. That was ironic dude.

She needs a tag "things are not as they seem."

roesch-voltaire said...

Interesting the way Tushnet resists the framing of Althouse's questions: she did not find the article so negative etc.