Biblical allusions in TSA

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Alia

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« Reply #45 on: March 14, 2014, 06:38:59 pm »
As a kid I did not read much of the Bible - what I read was a book of biblical deconstruction, called [in translation] "Tales of the Bible", which traced origins of all Old Testament stories to their earlier origins (Sumer, Mesopotamia, etc).
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« Reply #46 on: March 15, 2014, 12:41:49 am »
I was raised in a Bible-heavy environment.  Got real sick of it along the way.  But I was reading about rhetorical devices and damn near everyone in the book showed up in the KJV.  I was impressed.  I really like Bakker's "fantasy as scripture otherwise" bit.  Like all the Bible stuff, seems to make the books, idk, more serious/special.  That so much fantasy can be so close to current vernacular can be a turn off.

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« Reply #47 on: March 15, 2014, 02:07:40 pm »
I'm honestly amazed that he hasn't seen a backlash for tackling the religious stuff as much as the gender issue. But it speaks to what offends society right now...

Or maybe all fantasy is equally damned as heretical.
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mrganondorf

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« Reply #48 on: March 15, 2014, 06:02:26 pm »
I'm honestly amazed that he hasn't seen a backlash for tackling the religious stuff as much as the gender issue. But it speaks to what offends society right now...

Or maybe all fantasy is equally damned as heretical.

When I hear Tolkien invoked by religious folks, I think "yes! but he didn't make his characters go to church!"

Alia

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« Reply #49 on: March 16, 2014, 09:29:48 am »
So, I once talked with this Christian philosopher (seriously, he has a Ph. D. from a catholic university) who also happens to be a writer (of a kind of fantasy, but it's much more complicated). And he said that yes, in a way all fantasy is heretical, because it shows worlds with gods other than God - but on the other hand, what really counts is the message, so to say, the morality of the world. Well, I guess on that count Bakker would also fail miserably in the eyes of Christians.

But there is also one more thing - at least over here fantasy and science-fiction was never treated seriously. During the communist times, if you wanted to write a scathing critique of the regime and have it published by a state publishing house, you could write a sci-fi novel, because censors never really treated sci-fi seriously. And the same goes now for morality issues. Mainstream books are widely criticised (by different groups, of course) for gender issues, immorality, attacks on the church, you name it, while sci-fi and fantasy remains, so to say, under the radar.

BTW, one of the most openly heretical fantasy books is a YA series "Fallen" by Lauren Kate - and even though it was a huge hit, nobody noticed. Because it's just one of "those stupid fairy tales for kids".
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« Reply #50 on: March 16, 2014, 10:49:46 am »
But there is also one more thing - at least over here fantasy and science-fiction was never treated seriously. During the communist times, if you wanted to write a scathing critique of the regime and have it published by a state publishing house, you could write a sci-fi novel, because censors never really treated sci-fi seriously. And the same goes now for morality issues. Mainstream books are widely criticised (by different groups, of course) for gender issues, immorality, attacks on the church, you name it, while sci-fi and fantasy remains, so to say, under the radar.

BTW, one of the most openly heretical fantasy books is a YA series "Fallen" by Lauren Kate - and even though it was a huge hit, nobody noticed. Because it's just one of "those stupid fairy tales for kids".

+1 for perspective. This is really interesting - though, I'm sure it could easily have been harrowing living.

Wasn't C.S. Lewis a devout Christian? Isn't Aslan a Trinity-like stand-in?
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Alia

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« Reply #51 on: March 16, 2014, 12:49:20 pm »
Well, the system collapsed before I was old enough to really notice how bad it was. For me it was mostly all those daily indignities, empty shelves in shops, rationing, standing in long lines to buy the essentials. And now I look at my students, who were born several years later and have never known how it was, and I'm happy for them.
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« Reply #52 on: March 16, 2014, 02:10:43 pm »
Well, the system collapsed before I was old enough to really notice how bad it was. For me it was mostly all those daily indignities, empty shelves in shops, rationing, standing in long lines to buy the essentials. And now I look at my students, who were born several years later and have never known how it was, and I'm happy for them.

I'm so torn on these types of generational embodiments. Does innocence depend entirely on ignorance? Isn't there some way for them to know and be informed without it ruining their everyday life?
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Alia

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« Reply #53 on: March 16, 2014, 02:47:33 pm »
Madness, let me put it this way. Have you ever stood in a two-hour line to buy a bottle of oil? Have you ever used old newspapers instead of toilet paper? These are the daily indignities that I talked about and I _am_ happy that my students have been spared.
« Last Edit: March 16, 2014, 02:52:15 pm by Alia »
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mrganondorf

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« Reply #54 on: March 16, 2014, 02:55:59 pm »
@ Alia - I looked at Fallen--does look really heretical!  Made me think of the Dark is Rising Sequence by Susan Cooper.  Heretical via paganism.  Oh! and The Golden Compass, etc.

Haha--thinking of philosopher you met, he's probably got really nuanced views and what not.  I can't help thinking that I can start throwing rocks at people in my town and hit wildly different levels of what counts as heresy.  Have you seen Jesus Camp?  Terrifying documentary about a summer camp for conservative Christians in the US.  At one point an adult tells the kids that Harry Potter would have been stoned if he had lived during the Old Testament.

I would love to know some of the titles that the censors missed!  Please!

@ Madness - Aslan was a straight up Jesus stand in!  The other members of the trinity had their own analogues in Narnia.

Generational weirdness: as the years roll by, my students have gone from knowing 9/11 just as I did to thinking of it as history.  Very strange.

Alia

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« Reply #55 on: March 16, 2014, 03:28:31 pm »
I would love to know some of the titles that the censors missed!  Please!

The problem is, not much of it was translated into English - but take a look at this Wikipedia entry, he was one of the best examples here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Janusz_Zajdel.
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« Reply #56 on: March 16, 2014, 03:42:05 pm »
Madness, let me put it this way. Have you ever stood in a two-hour line to buy a bottle of oil? Have you ever used old newspapers instead of toilet paper? These are the daily indignities that I talked about and I _am_ happy that my students have been spared.

No to the first, but yes to the second... growing up I've been through many poor-person "indignities," as low as you can sink in a First World country, anyhow. I think the worst my family ever got to was the five of us living in a camp-site for a couple months when I was about six but we definitely did food banks, homeless meals, etc.

However, as a kid I didn't experience those as indignities - my parents and my older sister certainly did - it was only as I grew up and I began to understand that I was at the bottom of life's affluence that I retroactively perceived a difference.

Generational weirdness: as the years roll by, my students have gone from knowing 9/11 just as I did to thinking of it as history.  Very strange.

This helps illustrate my question better. I'm not saying that growing generations should be subject to hardship... but must their innocence from experiencing such things depend on the total ignorance of hardship happening at all?
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Alia

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« Reply #57 on: March 16, 2014, 04:07:47 pm »
This helps illustrate my question better. I'm not saying that growing generations should be subject to hardship... but must their innocence from experiencing such things depend on the total ignorance of hardship happening at all?

Well, they do learn during history classes what life was like in the post-war period, I'm just happy that they did not experience it first-hand.
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« Reply #58 on: March 16, 2014, 05:19:20 pm »
@ Alia - Thank you for the name!  I think I would really like his work, but I only found one mention of an English translation of his work (put it on the wishlist all the same).  It also mentioned Lem in the article and he's been on my 'to read' list for ages.

Now my mind is buzzing with scifi/fantasy/heresy:

Good Omens - Pratchett & Gaiman
American Gods - Gaiman
Sandman - Gaiman
Beware of God - Auslander
10 Billion Days & 100 Billion Nights (i think, haven't gotten to it yet) - Mitsuse
Lamb - Moore
Johannes Cabal - Howard
Infernals - Connolly
Sandman Slim - Kadrey
Mercury Falls - Kroese

If you like Narnia, you've got to read the Magicians by Lev Grossman.  I liked it a lot.  The sequel, however, is shit.

P.S. Alia & Madness, I hope you are both enjoying better days now.  Sounds like you are well due for it.

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« Reply #59 on: March 16, 2014, 05:30:43 pm »
This helps illustrate my question better. I'm not saying that growing generations should be subject to hardship... but must their innocence from experiencing such things depend on the total ignorance of hardship happening at all?

Well, they do learn during history classes what life was like in the post-war period, I'm just happy that they did not experience it first-hand.

Lol - indeed. I get you. I guess I took the thought a step further in that I can think of there is a prevalent ignorance that seems to be a byproduct of education here in Canada.

P.S. Alia & Madness, I hope you are both enjoying better days now.  Sounds like you are well due for it.

Yeah, MG. Life's been a journey though. And I'm still climbing.
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