DO YOU PRACTICE?

Catalyst May Issue 1998

It’s not everyday that an author is asked whether he practices his religion and whether it impacts on the way he writes. Unless he’s Catholic.

On April 5, in an unusually unfriendly interview with historian Paul Johnson, Brian Lamb, on C-Span’s “Booknotes,” began probing the author of A History of the American People about his religion.

Lamb: “Almost everything written about you refers to the fact that you are a Roman Catholic. Is that right?”

Johnson: “Yes sir.”

Lamb: “You practice?”

Johnson: “Oh yes sir.”

Lamb: “Does that impact the way you write about this? ‘Cause there’s a lot of religion in the book.”

Johnson let him off the hook. But we won’t: we’d like to know what religion, if any, Lamb ascribes to and whether he practices. Oh yes, we’d also like to know whether that impacts on what questions he poses and to which authors.


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Written by Bill