Perspectives on our Age

Perspectives on Our Age: Jacques Ellul Speaks on His Life and Work - Jacques Ellul, William H. Vanderburg

Our prof told us this book would be a short and relatively easy read, although I remained skeptical. The last philosophical book we had to read for the course gave me a rather hard time, and was a burden to read. However, as soon as I began “Perspectives on our Age” I managed to get into it rather quickly and stay with the consistent flow throughout.


I liked many of Ellul’s points, and agreed with him on most things. The writing was clear and to-the-point, to put it simply, and that’s what I like when it comes to the more philosophical themes. It doesn’t help when writers try to be wordy or flowery, or repeat the same thing dozens of times in order to make their point come across. Yes, Ellul had a clear love for the word “milieu”, which would cluster in passages throughout the book, and he clearly loved the term technique to the point where sometimes I felt a bit dizzy from his layered explanations that would force me to pause and resurface before continuing to read. But I found these to be very minor issues that didn’t prevent me from enjoying the book. He makes some very valid points, some quite obvious that should be quite apparent today, and others that I didn’t know or think about before. It was a worthwhile and thought-provoking read that I enjoyed, and a great introduction to a writer that I probably never would’ve heard of otherwise if it wasn’t for my university course.