SPIRITED THINKING SINCE 1888
Violet Hudson

October 04, 2020
Last month, Pope Francis declared gossip to be a “plague worse than Covid”. Pope Francis’s declaration last month that gossip is a plague worse than Covid was met by some with derision – not least by the Italian government. But three political news stories since then have added weight to his warning, showing just how
July 25, 2020
The two big hit TV shows of the summer – Mrs America and I May Destroy You, both available on BBC iPlayer – have something unexpected in common. Both its female protagonists come from Catholic backgrounds. The former is set in the 1970s during the height of the women’s liberation movement. Cate Blanchett plays Phyllis
July 11, 2020
Barack Obama has described literature as “they’re the fabric that helps make up a life”. But what does his Reading List say about him? Most of us have heard of the “shelfie” (in case you haven’t, it is when a social media influencer posts a photograph of their bookshelf to demonstrate how well-read or woke
July 05, 2020
British Catholics have many crosses to bear, but one of the slanders most often hurled at us is that we are terrific snobs. In the UK, we have scant little to be snobbish about – our churches tend to be modern and un-romantic, our hymns are dire compared with rousing Protestant numbers, our history is
June 13, 2020
Meghan Markle has a hard time in the press. But look to literature, and you’ll see this is nothing new. Whether you love them or loathe them, there can be little doubt that the story of the artists formally known as Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Sussex has captivated nations both sides
January 01, 1970
Much has been the carping about the government’s new “Rule of Six”. And, indeed, it is absurd. Poorly thought out and, apparently, utterly randomly chosen, the rule of six prohibits people from gathering in groups larger than this (in theory, to prevent the spread of Covid-19) – even if their family itself numbers more. Visiting
March 01, 2021
Violet Hudson on how a global pandemic made being in nature a spiritual activity
March 12, 2020
In the Crypt with a Candlestick By Daisy Waugh Piatkus, 288pp, £16.99/$21.45 In Daisy Waugh’s new novel the Todes of Tode Hall are in crisis. The despised patriarch Sir Ecgbert, the 11th baronet, has finally shuffled off his mortal coil, leaving his younger wife, Emma, despairing as to which of her three hopeless children to