As we all know, John Sexton is a man of many faces. He’s a hugger, he’s a law nerd, he flies to Abu Dhabi with nonchalance, and, as the president of this whole damn place, he cares deeply about each and every one of you. But if you read our interview with him in the NYU Local Magazine, though, you might’ve learned something else about the Bobcat-in-chief: he is unbelievably obsessed with baseball and, if he were a Gallatin student, his concentration would be “Baseball as a Road to God: A Study in the Post-Modern Hegemony of Constructed Reality.”
Yes, the former Dean of NYU Law is a sucker for the American pastime. The king of Downtown academia knows more about RBIs and sac-flies than half of the users on Barstool Sports. So, for the past few years, he has been teaching a course with the exact same name to a bunch of students who are still unsure if a ground-run double will lead you to salvation. And, somehow amidst his duties as the overseer of more than 30,000 of us, he’s writing a book about it that you can now pre-order on Amazon.
The book, titled with the cleaner, “Baseball as a Road to God: Seeing Beyond the Game,” will be arriving on the shelves of the Strand on March 7th, 2013. If that’s too long of a wait, pre-order it and pat yourself on the back for choosing a school with a president who is part-intellectual and part-sports-fanatic. If you’re really, really impatient, read this little blurb provided to us by Amazon:
For more than a decade, New York University President John Sexton has used baseball to illustrate the elements of a spiritual life in a wildly popular course at NYU. Using some of the great works of baseball fiction as well as the actual game’s fantastic moments, its legendary characters, and its routine rituals—from the long-sought triumph of the 1955 Brooklyn Dodgers, to the heroic achievements of players like the saintly Christy Mathewson and the sinful Ty Cobb, to the loving intimacy of a game of catch between a father and son—Sexton teachers that through the game we can touch the spiritual dimension of life.
Baseball as a Road to God is about the elements of our lives that lie beyond what can be captured in words alone—ineffable truths that we know by experience rather than by logic or analysis. Applying to the secular activity of baseball a form of inquiry usually reserved for the study of religion, Sexton reveals a surprising amount of common ground between the game and what we all recognize as religion: sacred places and time, faith and doubt, blessings and curses, and more.
In thought-provoking, beautifully rendered prose, this book elegantly demonstrates that baseball is more than a game, or even a national pastime: It can be a road to a deeper and more meaningful life.
And then keep in mind the irony of it all: The president of NYU is writing a book about SPORTS.