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19261Re: [mythsoc] (Pullman)

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  • John D Rateliff
    Dec 13, 2007
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      On Dec 13, 2007, at 12:25 PM, alexeik@... wrote:
      > Are they entirely unjustified in this, though? Not all of Pullman's
      > story takes place in a fantasy world: parts of it are anchored in
      > the primary world as well (or a world so similar to ours that its
      > precise identity makes no difference)

      It starts out presenting it as if it's the real world, but since
      fantasy events begin to happen in it it's revealed as just another
      fantasy world by that very fact. And it's not the portrayal of
      religious figures in Will's world that upsets the people calling for
      boycotts of the film or removal of the books from libraries but how
      they appear in Lyra's world and the fantasy worlds of the third book.

      > . . . the subplot involving Dr. Mary Malone, the ex-nun-turned-
      > scientist who jettisons both her religious vocation and her faith
      > in general as a result of tasting marzipan. If this took place
      > entirely in a fantasy setting, it could be taken as a clever
      > reversal of the "Turkish delight" theme in _LWW_, and appreciated
      > on the same level, mythopoeically.

      I like the idea of the two scenes being inverse of each other; I'd
      not thought of that before. It struck me as the most trivial possible
      reason to lose yr faith; I hope for her sake it was at least good
      marzipan, just as I've always hoped it was a pretty good apple.

      > Whether one agrees with him or not, it turns his story into a
      > primary-world polemic rather than a mythopoeic statement. This is
      > what terminally ruined _The Amber Spyglass_ for me, although I
      > really enjoyed most of the two previous books.

      I thought the first book was brilliant. The second was an interesting
      attempt to start from a different point and work to the same place;
      didn't quite come off, but worth reading. The third was a terrible
      hash, both polemic (which was annoying) and mythopoeic (mainly I
      think derived from Blake's prophetic books). I've always wondered
      what the original version of the third book, which he took back from
      the publisher and extensively rewrote, was like.

      --JDR
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