Re: [mythsoc] Till We Have Faces review
- In a message dated 6/11/2004 7:17:50 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
> I have to ask myself about the tone of this reference, suggesting thatIt's not quite that Christian literature is considered "box office poison."
> Christianity is now "box office poison" -
> "It is certainly a tribute to Lewis the writer that, despite his linkage to
> so-called Christian literature and his knack for religious allegory, he
> continues to be widely read and referenced. "
> Ooo, that awful religious allegory! ooo!
It's that Christian literature is now considered a genre with all the usual
ghettoization of genres. Not only is a section labeled something like
"Christian Fiction" found in many religious bookstores, but there's frequently a
section with that label in many of the large general-purpose bookstores. The real
reason for creating sections is that people who want to look at nothing except
science fiction, mysteries, romances, Christian fiction, etc., now only have
to look through other books of that genre because it's all placed in one
section. They no longer even have to think about other sorts of fiction.
The interesting thing is that Lewis's books are not part of this ghetto.
I've made this same point a couple times before on this mailing list. I first
noticed this some years ago when I saw that there was a fair number of Lewis's
books in Kramerbooks and Afterwords, a somewhat hip bookstore/cafe in a
somewhat hip neighborhood of Washington, D.C. There were more of his books there
than in the religious bookstores and almost as many as in the Borders and Barnes &
Noble's bookstores in the area. I suspect the people who buy large amounts
of "Christian literature" don't even think of Lewis as being part of this
Heck, I wonder if the fans of that sort of literature even know who Lewis is.
Maybe it's the same as the way that Philip K. Dick's and Samuel Delany's
books are no longer sold in mass-market paperbacks anymore (just in highbrow
trade paperbacks) and are sometimes no longer placed in the science fiction
sections. The publishers have made a decision not to appeal to genre readers
anymore for these writers and have deliberately pushed them away from one group of
readers to another.
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