Benjamin D. Wiker

Benjamin Wiker is Professor of Political Science and Senior Fellow of the Veritas Center at Franciscan University. His website is

recent articles

Gentleman’s Astronomy

AN INTRODUCTION, IN WHICH THE READER’S ATTENTION IS FIRMLY BUT POLITELY GRASPED It is out of fashion, to say the least, to speak of gentlemen. Perhaps that is why there are so few of them. As Aristotle, the gentleman’s philosopher, said somewhere or other, when they are not gentled, men are worse than beasts. It … Read more

Alien Ideas: Christianity and the Search for Extraterrestrial Life

We tend to consider speculation about extraterrestrials to be a recent phenomenon, a task forced on us by the scientific knowledge we’ve gained during the last century. It’s rather surprising, perhaps, to find out that the debate about whether there is extraterrestrial life stretches back just shy of two and a half millennia. Given the … Read more

Don’t Wear That Mini to Mass

As I have not received nearly enough hate mail of late, I thought it best to write something else on modesty, this time modesty at Mass (see my first article, “Drawing a Hemline: Sexual Modesty and the Pursuit of Wisdom,” July/August 2000). I realize, of course, how delicate this subject is, but I also know … Read more

Drawing A Hemline: Sexual Modesty and the Pursuit of Wisdom

I have a suggestion for those in academia who are concerned that women be treated as intellectual equals: Try sexual modesty. Before the lynching party arrives, I hope I will have time to explain. I have taught at several colleges, one of which has a dress code. To many, a dress code seems old-fashioned at … Read more

The Invention of Heck

Just as we slowly lost our belief in the Devil, Hell was watered down before it was doused altogether. The English political philosopher Thomas Hobbes (1588- 9) can take much responsibility for creating that kinder and gentler Hell—”Heck” we might call it—where God sends the “clanged” and then not even for long. And Hobbes used … Read more

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