Tuesday, June 30, 2009

to be educated

A review of our book by one of my favorite professors at Texas Lutheran.

A book review by Norm Beck,
Poehlmann Professor of Theology and Classical Languages

If to be educated is to be led from one position and perspective to another, Dr. Tom Wilkens and Kim Wilkens, together with other members of their family and in interaction with their culture, eloquently demonstrate what it means to be educated. Their book, in a most profound sense, is also our book.

During the 24 years in which Dr. Wilkens was my closest colleague on the Texas Lutheran University faculty, I and thousands of others within the community of this University were blessed to be educated in so many ways by him. That education has continued during the past decade in which he and Betty, who had been our campus nurse, have traveled and interacted in educational endeavors in many other areas of the world. In the broadest sense, he reminds us that, although we may be resistant, if we are sentient beings we are constantly being educated by our interactions with others, especially by those who are younger than we are.

Kim Wilkens, co-author with her father, a graduate of TLU not too many years ago, provides an education and an articulation for all of us, including those who are closest to where she is in her life and faith pilgrimage. There is so much of TLU in these authors and in their book, a book that defines and exposes us.

The subtitle, “A modern father and postmodern daughter reflect on their pilgrimages of life and faith,” provides an indication of education within slightly more than three hundred pages and thirty segments, each segment of which can be read separately much as we might read articles in a Reader’s Digest publication, but with much more cohesion. The primary title, Un-American Activities: Countercultural Themes in Christianity, challenges us and alerts us to the educational scope of the work, expanding for us the purview of the book far beyond the arena that is TLU.

Find the complete review here.

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