Welcome to the debut episode of Everything That Rises — a weekly passion project podcast series dedicated to the short stories of the one and only Flannery O’Connor. Each week join English teacher, author and speaker John Meehan (@MeehanEDU) and a well-read friend to help co-host as we explore the stories, symbols, and rich cultural legacy of this iconic 20th Century author of the American South. Blending Catholic theology with literary analysis for a sort of 21st century book club (complete with the usual parade of good-natured tall tales and Southern “stretchers”), it’s a fun and fascinating journey through one of the most brilliant and influential writers in all of contemporary American literature. New stories twice a month! And new episodes every week, with about 45(ish) minutes devoted to the first half of each story, and another 45 minutes (or so) the following week dedicated to all the unexpected twists and turns that lie in store in the back half of each narrative.
This week’s story: A Circle in the Fire! And since we’re kicking off our podcast with all of this symbolism and spirituality to unpack, we’re joined by Richmond-based religion teacher Julia Strukely (@MsStrukely1) — who holds two degrees from The Catholic University of America including an undergraduate degree in media studies and her M.A. in theology.