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Defense of Narnia against Pullman

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  • Stolzi
    http://chronicle.com/temp/reprint.php?id=84bgxkbbzvqrch10g3kbwp5g8kv3ccbn Pretty good, except... is it =Aravis= who saves Narnia from attack ? I d have said
    Message 1 of 18 , Dec 1, 2005
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      http://chronicle.com/temp/reprint.php?id=84bgxkbbzvqrch10g3kbwp5g8kv3ccbn

      Pretty good, except... is it =Aravis= who saves Narnia from attack ? I'd
      have said it was Shasta.

      Diamond Proudbrook
    • John D Rateliff
      Interesting piece, but I don t see how Nelson s slanders against Pullman are any more edifying than Pullman s slams against CSL. --JDR current reading: THE
      Message 2 of 18 , Dec 1, 2005
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        Interesting piece, but I don't see how Nelson's slanders against
        Pullman are any more edifying than Pullman's slams against CSL.
        --JDR

        current reading: THE GREAT DINOSAUR MYSTERY--SOLVED! (creationist
        tract about dinosaurs on Noah's ark)
        ....................
        On Dec 1, 2005, at 1:50 PM, Stolzi wrote:
        > http://chronicle.com/temp/reprint.php?
        > id=84bgxkbbzvqrch10g3kbwp5g8kv3ccbn


        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • Carl F. Hostetter
        ... What would those slanders be? I for one was most bothered by this statement attributed to Pullman (if true; John, can you establish otherwise?): The
        Message 3 of 18 , Dec 1, 2005
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          On Dec 1, 2005, at 11:38 PM, John D Rateliff wrote:

          > Interesting piece, but I don't see how Nelson's slanders against
          > Pullman are any more edifying than Pullman's slams against CSL.
          > --JDR

          What would those "slanders" be?

          I for one was most bothered by this statement attributed to Pullman
          (if true; John, can you establish otherwise?):

          "The highest virtue, we have on the authority of the New Testament
          itself," the avowedly atheistic Pullman said in a recent interview
          about the movie, "is love, and yet you find not a trace of that in
          the books."

          It seems to me that Pullman makes no distinction whatsoever as to
          what kind of "love" the New Testament is speaking of -- utterly
          unlike Lewis, of course, though from what I've read of Pullman's
          intense antipathy towards Lewis, I don't expect him to know that --
          which would neatly account for his failure to find any sort of love
          in _Narnia_. Furthermore, it seems to me that in doing so, Pullman is
          basically arguing that (whatever he means by) "love" in the New
          Testament requires that we hold no judgment or opinion about the
          behavior of others, specifically about the relative moral value of
          those behaviors, or their rightness or wrongness with regard to N.T.
          ethics and morality. In other words, by "love" Pullman seems to think
          that the New Testament means that one should simply accede to
          whatever ethical or moral position or behavior anyone else might
          happen to espouse or practice: i.e., the modern, relativist position.
          Which is very much NOT the position of either Christ or the New
          Testament authors. In other words still, Pullman seems to think that
          merely invoking the unqualified concept of "love" trumps all other
          positions or judgments: indeed, precludes them entirely.
        • David Bratman
          re: Sorry, but I don t see any slanders against Pullman in the article, unless he s
          Message 4 of 18 , Dec 1, 2005
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            re: <http://chronicle.com/temp/reprint.php?id=84bgxkbbzvqrch10g3kbwp5g8kv3ccbn>

            Sorry, but I don't see any slanders against Pullman in the article, unless
            he's misquoted. Maybe he is, because I find much of what he's quoted as
            saying to be incredible, and not in a good sense. I'm not a real big
            Narnia fan - I find the Chronicles often trivial, and occasionally grating
            and twee, and they just don't have the evocative power for me that they do
            for many readers - but they're perfectly solid and enjoyable children's
            fantasies, no more offensive than dozens of others without Christian
            apologetic underpinnings but sharing its "old-fashioned" sex roles and
            clearly-marked good guys and bad guys. I find most of the criticisms
            attributed to Pullman to be utterly bizarre, for reasons adequately
            explained by Nelson in the article. I think it a very fine article,
            especially as it doesn't try to hide that Lewis had apologetic motives in
            writing the Chronicles.

            DB
          • Christine Howlett
            I would say it was all four of them that saved Narnia, since none of them would have finished the journey without the help of the others. Christine ... From:
            Message 5 of 18 , Dec 2, 2005
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              I would say it was all four of them that saved Narnia, since none of them
              would have finished the journey without the help of the others.
              Christine
              ----- Original Message -----
              From: "Stolzi" <Stolzi@...>
              To: "Mythopoeic Society" <mythsoc@yahoogroups.com>
              Sent: Thursday, December 01, 2005 4:50 PM
              Subject: [mythsoc] Defense of Narnia against Pullman


              > http://chronicle.com/temp/reprint.php?id=84bgxkbbzvqrch10g3kbwp5g8kv3ccbn
              >
              > Pretty good, except... is it =Aravis= who saves Narnia from attack ? I'd
              > have said it was Shasta.
              >
              > Diamond Proudbrook
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              > The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
              > Yahoo! Groups Links
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
            • alexeik@aol.com
              ... From: Carl F. Hostetter To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com Sent: Thu, 1 Dec 2005 23:52:36 -0500 Subject: Re: [mythsoc] Defense of Narnia
              Message 6 of 18 , Dec 2, 2005
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                -----Original Message-----
                From: Carl F. Hostetter <Aelfwine@...>
                To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
                Sent: Thu, 1 Dec 2005 23:52:36 -0500
                Subject: Re: [mythsoc] Defense of Narnia against Pullman



                <<I for one was most bothered by this statement attributed to Pullman
                (if true; John, can you establish otherwise?):

                "The highest virtue, we have on the authority of the New Testament
                itself," the avowedly atheistic Pullman said in a recent interview
                about the movie, "is love, and yet you find not a trace of that in
                the books.">>


                As you point out, Pullman makes no distinction between the different ways love manifests itself (Lewis's "Four Loves"), and it seems to be that he takes "love" to always mean "Eros", or to always potentially mean that.
                This limiting way he uses language extends to other terms, such as in the confusing way he understands "grace".
                Alexei


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              • David Bratman
                So ... when Jesus said, Love your neighbor as yourself, Pullman thinks he means, Practice eros with your neighbor ? Wouldn t that be a violation of a
                Message 7 of 18 , Dec 2, 2005
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                  So ... when Jesus said, "Love your neighbor as yourself," Pullman thinks he means, "Practice eros with your neighbor"? Wouldn't that be a violation of a Commandment or two? What does Pullman think "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind" means?

                  This seems an insane interpretation of Pullman, and yet ... for any broader meaning of the word "love" it's equally insane to say that there's no trace of it in Narnia. To take it to absolute rock bottom, Edmund loves Turkish Delight, for ghu's sake.

                  DB

                  --alexeik@... wrote:

                  >>"The highest virtue, we have on the authority of the New Testament
                  >>itself," the avowedly atheistic Pullman said in a recent interview
                  >>about the movie, "is love, and yet you find not a trace of that in
                  >>the books.">>
                  >
                  >As you point out, Pullman makes no distinction between the different
                  >ways love manifests itself (Lewis's "Four Loves"), and it seems to be
                  >that he takes "love" to always mean "Eros", or to always potentially
                  >mean that.
                • alexeik@aol.com
                  ... From: David Bratman To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com Sent: Fri, 2 Dec 2005 11:07:34 -0800 (GMT-08:00) Subject: Re: [mythsoc] Defense of
                  Message 8 of 18 , Dec 7, 2005
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                    -----Original Message-----
                    From: David Bratman <dbratman@...>
                    To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
                    Sent: Fri, 2 Dec 2005 11:07:34 -0800 (GMT-08:00)
                    Subject: Re: [mythsoc] Defense of Narnia against Pullman


                    <<So ... when Jesus said, "Love your neighbor as yourself," Pullman thinks he
                    means, "Practice eros with your neighbor"? Wouldn't that be a violation of a
                    Commandment or two? What does Pullman think "Love the Lord your God with all
                    your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind" means?

                    This seems an insane interpretation of Pullman, and yet ... for any broader
                    meaning of the word "love" it's equally insane to say that there's no trace of
                    it in Narnia. To take it to absolute rock bottom, Edmund loves Turkish Delight,
                    for ghu's sake.>>
                    Nowhere in _His Dark Materials_ (or in any of his criticism of Lewis that I've read) does Pullman refer in any way to Christian scripture, or indeed engage in any kind of meaningful argument with Christian belief or doctrine. "The Church" is presented as a rigid and oppressive hierarchy, but bereft of any consistent belief system, other than unquestioning submission to "the Authority". Jesus never appears.
                    In general, Pullman seems to equate Christianity with the denial of pleasure and little else. In specific relation to Lewis, my impression is that his main concern is the fate of Susan, which he sees as the main scandal of Narnia. He attributes Lewis's disapproval of Susan not to her having become shallow and vain in her adolescence (as Lewis describes), but to her having undergone sexual awakening. The whole message of Narnia, then, becomes one of denial of sensual pleasure, and thus "life-denying".
                    While "Turkish Delight" in LWW does have a connotation of sensual pleasure, the fact that it plays a negative role would only exarcebate Pullman's disapproval. In _The Amber Spyglass_ he creates a counter to it, when his ex-nun character loses her faith after eating marzipan -- rediscovering sensual pleasure, which directly reconnects her to Eros.
                    I do think, on the evidence, that this is how Pullman's interpretation of Narnia leads to his charge that it has no "love".
                    Alexei


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                  • David Bratman
                    ... I no longer have the original article, but I recall that the Pullman statement I was responding to cited the New Testament as saying the highest value was
                    Message 9 of 18 , Dec 7, 2005
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                      At 01:57 PM 12/7/2005 -0500, alexeik@... wrote:

                      >Nowhere in _His Dark Materials_ (or in any of his criticism of Lewis that
                      >I've read) does Pullman refer in any way to Christian scripture, or indeed
                      >engage in any kind of meaningful argument with Christian belief or doctrine.

                      I no longer have the original article, but I recall that the Pullman
                      statement I was responding to cited the New Testament as saying the highest
                      value was love and declared that love was totally absent from Narnia.
                      Thus, Pullman referring to Christian scripture in the course of his
                      criticism of Lewis.


                      >In specific relation to Lewis, my impression is that his
                      >main concern is the fate of Susan, which he sees as the main scandal of
                      >Narnia. He attributes Lewis's disapproval of Susan not to her having become
                      >shallow and vain in her adolescence (as Lewis describes), but to her having
                      >undergone sexual awakening.

                      Which proves that he hasn't read the books, since 1) all of the Pevensies
                      are post-pubescent by the time of the "Susan is no longer a friend of
                      Narnia" conversation; 2) Susan, and the others, had undergone sexual
                      awakening to the extent of courtship in the final chapter of LWW.


                      >While "Turkish Delight" in LWW does have a connotation of sensual pleasure,
                      >the fact that it plays a negative role would only exarcebate Pullman's
                      >disapproval.

                      Sure, but that's only the worst example. All the good characters love
                      Aslan. Does Pullman think that a) that's sexual; b) if not sexual, bad; c)
                      that non-sexual love is not a justified use of the word "love"? If A or B,
                      he's a sick little puppy; if C, he's flying in the face of every English
                      translation of Jesus that I've ever heard of. That's the question I'm
                      trying to ask: is it A, B, or C, and if none of the above, what am I missing?

                      DB
                    • Stolzi
                      David, George Orwell once complained that fascism as a word had reached the status of meaning anything we don t like. It is possible that love now
                      Message 10 of 18 , Dec 7, 2005
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                        David,

                        George Orwell once complained that "fascism" as a word had reached the
                        status of meaning "anything we don't like." It is possible that "love"
                        now means "anything we like" and since Pullman doesn't like Narnia, Narnia
                        cannot possibly in his view contain "love."

                        I find this critique particularly ironic coming from Pullman, when a recent
                        article (while intemperate in its attacks upon Pullman) reminded me of the
                        horrific scenes of torture, death and decay which he blithely puts into his
                        text for "children" readers, and not least of the fact that he puts his
                        young lovers together briefly only to tear them apart in the end.

                        Some Love.

                        Diamond Proudbrook
                      • alexeik@aol.com
                        ... From: David Bratman To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com Sent: Wed, 07 Dec 2005 11:31:55 -0800 Subject: Re: [mythsoc] Defense of Narnia
                        Message 11 of 18 , Dec 8, 2005
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                          -----Original Message-----
                          From: David Bratman <dbratman@...>
                          To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
                          Sent: Wed, 07 Dec 2005 11:31:55 -0800
                          Subject: Re: [mythsoc] Defense of Narnia against Pullman


                          <<I no longer have the original article, but I recall that the Pullman
                          statement I was responding to cited the New Testament as saying the highest
                          value was love and declared that love was totally absent from Narnia.
                          Thus, Pullman referring to Christian scripture in the course of his
                          criticism of Lewis.>>

                          Well, but this is only referring to scripture in the most general way. An average non-Christian who has never read the Bible could easily have that same broad impression of the contents of the New Testament. It doesn't necessitate a detailed knowledge of the text or any engagement with it.

                          << All the good characters love
                          Aslan. Does Pullman think that a) that's sexual; b) if not sexual, bad; c)
                          that non-sexual love is not a justified use of the word "love"? If A or B,
                          he's a sick little puppy; if C, he's flying in the face of every English
                          translation of Jesus that I've ever heard of. That's the question I'm
                          trying to ask: is it A, B, or C, and if none of the above, what am I missing?>>

                          As you say, I don't think he's read the books carefully. It looks like he dislikes them too much to have retained any detailed knowledge of them. I also suspect that he interprets the exclusion of Susan as a lack of "love" [in this case, meaning kindness or charity rather than Eros alonet "lack of love" is still fundamentally tied to rejection of Eros] on the part
                          part of Lewis himself, and on that basis sees the whole work as fundamentally lacking in "love". Of course, he seems to believe that Susan is damned, which Lewis explicitly denied.


                          The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
                          Yahoo! Groups Links






                          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                        • David Bratman
                          ... Indeed, but he did refer to Christian scripture. ... Quite likely. I ve theorized that this explains a lot of the bizarre criticisms made of Tolkien as
                          Message 12 of 18 , Dec 8, 2005
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                            At 01:54 PM 12/8/2005 -0500, alexeik@... wrote:

                            >Well, but this is only referring to scripture in the most general way. An
                            >average non-Christian who has never read the Bible could easily have that
                            >same broad impression of the contents of the New Testament. It doesn't
                            >necessitate a detailed knowledge of the text or any engagement with it.

                            Indeed, but he did refer to Christian scripture.


                            >As you say, I don't think he's read the books carefully. It looks like he
                            >dislikes them too much to have retained any detailed knowledge of them.

                            Quite likely. I've theorized that this explains a lot of the bizarre
                            criticisms made of Tolkien as well. Edmund Wilson claimed to have read the
                            whole of LOTR aloud but forgot most of the plot and how to spell the
                            characters' names. Michael Moorcock has been offering detailed critiques
                            of LOTR for years, but only recently have I found him admitting that he
                            finds the book "nearly unreadable," which to my mind should disqualify him
                            from any critique save for saying what he finds unreadable about it, an
                            approach he's never taken.


                            >I also suspect that he interprets the exclusion of Susan as a lack of "love"
                            >[in this case, meaning kindness or charity rather than Eros alonet "lack of
                            >love" is still fundamentally tied to rejection of Eros] on the part
                            >part of Lewis himself, and on that basis sees the whole work as
                            >fundamentally lacking in "love".

                            That would be an understandable critique: to weigh the love vs. not-love
                            and find the books balancing out the wrong way. One would disagree, but
                            one could understand how he felt that way. But that's not what he said.
                            He said there's not a trace of love in them. That's what doesn't make any
                            sense.

                            David Bratman
                          • Carl F. Hostetter
                            I think you re both giving Pullman WAY too much credit for any sort of thoughtfulness behind his words at all. I read his statement as a slam at Lewis because
                            Message 13 of 18 , Dec 9, 2005
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                              I think you're both giving Pullman WAY too much credit for any sort
                              of thoughtfulness behind his words at all. I read his statement as a
                              slam at Lewis because Lewis was what would these days be always
                              called a "CONSERVATIVE Christian" (pronounced with a marked lip-curl
                              as a shibboleth for all other right-thinking people) for whom there
                              actually are universal and timeless moral standards of right and
                              wrong, and for whom facing judgement based on ones alignment and
                              comportment in accord with those standards is a certainty.

                              Pullman of course will have none of that for _his_ Jesus (at least,
                              not when it is convenient for him to have any kind of Jesus at all)
                              and so attributes to the Jesus of the New Testament the "liberal"
                              least-common-denominator sort of "love" that he finds least
                              objectionable: the hallmarks of which are unquestioning acceptance of
                              all other behaviors and beliefs, and valuing "niceness" above all
                              other virtues. His is a Jesus that knows nothing of Hell (or of
                              Heaven, really), and who came to win us salvation only from the
                              "oppression" of other men, and only so that we can all just be our
                              mellow selves in our own groovy way, where everything is cool, and
                              nothing harshes our buzz.

                              In other words: by "love" Pullman means "non-judgment" (or again, is
                              his world, "non-Church"), which is what he would have the New
                              Testament to be all about. In other words still: "It's a groovy kinda
                              love..."
                            • Jay Hershberger
                              CF: His is a Jesus that knows nothing of Hell (or of Heaven, really), and who came to win us salvation only from the oppression of other men, and only so
                              Message 14 of 18 , Dec 9, 2005
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                                CF: His is a Jesus that knows nothing of Hell (or of
                                Heaven, really), and who came to win us salvation only from the
                                "oppression" of other men, and only so that we can all just be our
                                mellow selves in our own groovy way, where everything is cool, and
                                nothing harshes our buzz.

                                JH: Yes. Can you imagine the Ante-Nicene Christians giving themselves
                                (and their children) over to the Romans to be consumed by wild animals,
                                burned alive, or torn into pieces for the sake of faith in Pullman's
                                version of Jesus?

                                Cheers,

                                Jay Hershberger
                                Moorhead, MN


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                              • John D Rateliff
                                ... Not quite. The four children grow up, but there s no hint of sexual awakening at all (aside from a simple statement that lords came from far and wide to
                                Message 15 of 18 , Dec 11, 2005
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                                  On Dec 7, 2005, at 11:31 AM, David Bratman wrote:
                                  >> In specific relation to Lewis, my impression is that his
                                  >> main concern is the fate of Susan, which he sees as the main
                                  >> scandal of
                                  >> Narnia. He attributes Lewis's disapproval of Susan not to her
                                  >> having become
                                  >> shallow and vain in her adolescence (as Lewis describes), but to
                                  >> her having
                                  >> undergone sexual awakening.
                                  >
                                  > Which proves that he hasn't read the books, since 1) all of the
                                  > Pevensies
                                  > are post-pubescent by the time of the "Susan is no longer a friend of
                                  > Narnia" conversation; 2) Susan, and the others, had undergone sexual
                                  > awakening to the extent of courtship in the final chapter of LWW.

                                  Not quite. The four children grow up, but there's no hint of sexual
                                  awakening at all (aside from a simple statement that lords came from
                                  far and wide to court Queen Susan the Gentle, with no indication
                                  their attentions met with much success or indeed any response on her
                                  part) in LWW. I think you're importing this back into the first book
                                  from HHB, where Susan is, so far as I recall, portrayed as much more
                                  shallow and rather pleased by the villain prince's suit. And then of
                                  course there's the notorious passage from the last book, the wording
                                  of which implies that the grown-up world of dating interests her more
                                  now than her childhood adventures in Narnia. Poor Susan: condemned to
                                  the outer darkness by an author who wants to make a Point.
                                  It is a little creepy, though, to think of all four of them
                                  having to go through puberty, revert to childhood, and then do it all
                                  over again in another world.

                                  > Does Pullman think that a) that's sexual; b) if not sexual, bad; c)
                                  > that non-sexual love is not a justified use of the word "love"? If
                                  > A or B,
                                  > he's a sick little puppy; if C, he's flying in the face of every
                                  > English
                                  > translation of Jesus that I've ever heard of. That's the question I'm
                                  > trying to ask: is it A, B, or C, and if none of the above, what am
                                  > I missing?

                                  None of the above, I'd say. I think it's hard for anyone to be fair
                                  when talking about a book he or she personally despises, and that
                                  Pullman has fallen into hyperbole.
                                  Besides, I think the linkage of love w. sensuality in this thread
                                  is pretty much beside the point. I'd say Pullman's main criticism in
                                  the article cited, that Narnia celebrates a culture of death (I
                                  forget the exact phrasing), ties directly into the major themes of
                                  HIS DARK MATERIAL: that any religion which focuses attention away
                                  from this life, the here and now where we actually live, in favor of
                                  some promised afterlife, is a cheat. The great revelation of the
                                  third volume, that the promised afterlife is a prison for souls meant
                                  to freely discorporate back into the stuff of which they were made,
                                  reminds me so much of Le Guin's revisionary final Earthsea book, THE
                                  OTHER WIND, that I think she must have found in Pullman an
                                  inspiration of how to recast her own myth.* CSL's shabby treatment of
                                  Susan, while offering ready-made ammunition to people who think him a
                                  misogynist, is really beside the main point. The "happy ending" to
                                  HOUSE OF THE OCTOPUS or THE LAST BATTLE (good news! everybody dies
                                  horribly! horray!) is anathema to Pullman's point of view.

                                  All in all, I still don't think the fact that Pullman dislikes
                                  Narnia with some intensity (just as JRRT did) is of any great
                                  significance, any more than Austen's disapproval of Robert Burns,
                                  Emerson's snootiness about Edgar Poe, or Shaw's dislike of Shakespeare.

                                  --JDR

                                  *Mind you, I think she greatly weakens the whole Earthsea series
                                  by her revisionism, but that's a different argument.


                                  --just finished: THE POWER OF THE RING by Stratford Caldecott;
                                  RINGERS (dvd documentary on Tolkien fandom); THE BOOK OF DRAGONS by
                                  Ciruelo.
                                  --new arrivals: GOD'S SECRETARIES: THE MAKING OF THE KING JAMES
                                  BIBLE; TOLKIEN'S MYTHOLOGY FOR ENGLAND: A MIDDLE-EARTH COMPANION by
                                  Edmund Wainwright; Lawlor's C.S.LEWIS: MEMORIES AND REFLECTIONS
                                  (audiobook).


                                  P.S.: The newest Blackstone Audio catalogue, just out, lists as new
                                  releases CSL's REFLECTIONS ON THE PSALMS along with THE WORLD
                                  ACCORDING TO NARNIA by Jonathan Rogers, about which I know nothing --
                                  the huge publicity push for the Narnia film seems to be causing the
                                  release of some material that I suspect we wouldn't otherwise get,
                                  like these audiobooks of CSL's minor works. I wish they'd record and
                                  release some of his scholarly work, like THE DISCARDED IMAGE, rather
                                  than just the fiction and apologetics.
                                • Stolzi
                                  ... From: John D Rateliff ... Well, Charlotte Bronte hated =Austen=, so there :) Diamond Proudbrook
                                  Message 16 of 18 , Dec 11, 2005
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                                    ----- Original Message -----
                                    From: "John D Rateliff" <sacnoth@...>

                                    > All in all, I still don't think the fact that Pullman dislikes
                                    > Narnia with some intensity (just as JRRT did) is of any great
                                    > significance, any more than Austen's disapproval of Robert Burns,
                                    > Emerson's snootiness about Edgar Poe, or Shaw's dislike of Shakespeare.

                                    Well, Charlotte Bronte hated =Austen=, so there :)

                                    Diamond Proudbrook
                                  • John D Rateliff
                                    ... Yes, so did Mark Twain. Their loss. Similarly, neither CSL nor Dunsany could stand, or understand, T. S. Eliot s poetry. Such knocks reflect badly on the
                                    Message 17 of 18 , Dec 11, 2005
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                                      > Well, Charlotte Bronte hated =Austen=, so there

                                      Yes, so did Mark Twain. Their loss. Similarly, neither CSL nor
                                      Dunsany could stand, or understand, T. S. Eliot's poetry. Such knocks
                                      reflect badly on the folks making them but do no real harm to their
                                      target.

                                      Speaking of nasty swipes at authors, the best part of the RINGERS
                                      documentary was a little animated skit done in Monty-Pythonesque
                                      (Terry Gilliam) style, where cardboard figures of Edmund Wilson,
                                      Philip Toynbee, and Harold Bloom ran down LotR (and those who admired
                                      it), with the voiceovers using actual quotes from their essays, only
                                      to have the three smug critics discomforted and reduced to quivering
                                      silence by winged cut-outs of CSL and WH Auden arriving on the scene
                                      with (laudatory) quotes of their own. That, and the scene with David
                                      Carradine where he talked about having tried to get a role in the
                                      LotR film back in the 70s then, upon learning to his horror that they
                                      were planning to make an animated film, trying to talk Bakshi out of
                                      the idea.

                                      Finally, here's a Narnian reference I couldn't make head or tails of.
                                      It's from the Sept. 16th issue of ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY, page 88, a
                                      review of the new cd "Takk" by the group Sigur Ros: "At times Takk
                                      almost rocks--as much as tiny ice-crystal elves from the magical land
                                      of Narnia can rock." Huh? Does that actually mean anything at all, or
                                      is the reviewer just being "clever"?

                                      --JDR



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                                    • Jonathan Michael Reiter
                                      Atomtetsuwan2002 here. That reference sounds like the reviewer is trying and failing to sound terrribly clever. I doubt said reviewer even read the books...
                                      Message 18 of 18 , Dec 12, 2005
                                      • 0 Attachment
                                        Atomtetsuwan2002 here. That reference sounds like the reviewer is trying and failing to sound terrribly clever.
                                        I doubt said reviewer even read the books...
                                        Atomtetsuwan2002
                                        at2k2
                                        ----- Original Message -----
                                        From: John D Rateliff
                                        To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
                                        Sent: Sunday, December 11, 2005 11:25 PM
                                        Subject: Re: [mythsoc] Defense of Pullman against Narnians


                                        > Well, Charlotte Bronte hated =Austen=, so there

                                        Yes, so did Mark Twain. Their loss. Similarly, neither CSL nor
                                        Dunsany could stand, or understand, T. S. Eliot's poetry. Such knocks
                                        reflect badly on the folks making them but do no real harm to their
                                        target.

                                        Speaking of nasty swipes at authors, the best part of the RINGERS
                                        documentary was a little animated skit done in Monty-Pythonesque
                                        (Terry Gilliam) style, where cardboard figures of Edmund Wilson,
                                        Philip Toynbee, and Harold Bloom ran down LotR (and those who admired
                                        it), with the voiceovers using actual quotes from their essays, only
                                        to have the three smug critics discomforted and reduced to quivering
                                        silence by winged cut-outs of CSL and WH Auden arriving on the scene
                                        with (laudatory) quotes of their own. That, and the scene with David
                                        Carradine where he talked about having tried to get a role in the
                                        LotR film back in the 70s then, upon learning to his horror that they
                                        were planning to make an animated film, trying to talk Bakshi out of
                                        the idea.

                                        Finally, here's a Narnian reference I couldn't make head or tails of.
                                        It's from the Sept. 16th issue of ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY, page 88, a
                                        review of the new cd "Takk" by the group Sigur Ros: "At times Takk
                                        almost rocks--as much as tiny ice-crystal elves from the magical land
                                        of Narnia can rock." Huh? Does that actually mean anything at all, or
                                        is the reviewer just being "clever"?

                                        --JDR



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