“This is not a pipe (Ceci n’est pas une pipe).” In his famous 1929 painting depicting a pipe, Magritte inscribed these words in a simple, cursive font. The great Surrealist painter was sending the viewer a message as surprising as it is obvious: representation is not the object that represents. The same can be said of the journal you are now reading. Civiltà Cattolica is not an object, that is, it is not to be identified with its paper or digital medium. Indeed, Pope Francis has been more radical, calling it, rather than a journal, “a true spiritual, communal and intellectual experience.”
Civiltà Cattolica embodies, in fact, a vision of the world, of culture, of politics, of the tensions of life. It is, therefore, an interpretation, a way of seeing things, which is expressed in print and on the web, but also in all the communication and relationships it is able to generate, embracing social debates, journalistic reflections, academic essays, emotional or rational reactions, whether polemical or supportive. It is generated by a community of Jesuits and, therefore, by a shared spiritual experience.