Kurt Houwen

Kurt Houwen lives in intentional community in New Jersey as part of the Episcopal Service Corps. He enjoys thinking deep and wide thoughts and teaching children about the outdoors.

Posts By This Author

bell hooks' Guide to Living With Love

by Olivia Whitener, by Kurt Houwen 05-25-2016
We’re a couple taking on Emma Watson's #feminist reading list together. Here’s what we’re learning.

Image via /Shutterstock.com

It wasn’t until recently, with the advent of modern capitalism, that people have retreated to the private sphere. This means we now believe that people can live secluded lives, only interacting with our most intimate connections — whether that be our nuclear family, romantic partner, or just with a pet. Hannah Arendt, another philosopher, offers a similar critique on people's retreat from the community and into the private sphere, naming it as a byproduct of capitalism.

Encountering God in 'The Color Purple'

by Olivia Whitener, by Kurt Houwen 03-10-2016
We’re a couple taking on Emma Watson's #feminist reading list together. Here’s what we’re learning.

Image via /Shutterstock.com

During summers working at camp, one thing we did together was draw who we thought God is. The campers and I would draw anything from stars in the night sky to pictures of their friends and family to copies of images of God they had seen in paintings. Then, like Celie and Shug Avery in this passage from The Color Purple, the campers and I would discuss together how God should not always be thought of as an old white man. That image of God is limiting for those of us who cannot identify with such a figure. When you think God looks like a person who represents oppression, danger, or injustice, you don’t want to have anything to do with that God. When you broaden the scope to say God is in everything and everyone, then everyone, including me and Celie and my campers, has a part of God’s light inside us.

Emma Watson Book Club

by Olivia Whitener, by Kurt Houwen 02-09-2016
We're a couple, taking on the star's #feminist reading list together. Here's what we're learning.

Image via UN Women/Flickr

Steinem says that from traveling so much, she had an opportunity to hear from so many different groups of people — proving that, “Hate generalizes, love specifies.’” And that’s one of the theories of social change, right? Hearing personal stories brings a better sense of understanding that can get more people on board and connected.

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