[Marxism] (fwd from A Pollack) Lewis v. Pullman

Jim Farmelant farmelantj at juno.com
Wed Jan 25 07:47:01 MST 2006

On Wed, 25 Jan 2006 08:38:07 -0500 Les Schaffer <schaffer at optonline.net>
> I'd never chimed in on any of the threads involving Frank Furedi, 
> never having heard of him until a year ago. But an article by him 
> currently at the top of aldaily.com touches on something I'll be 
> writing on down the road.
> (direct link: http://www.spiked-online.com/Articles/0000000CAF37.htm
> "The curious rise of anti-religious hysteria; It is the 
> Anglo-American cultural elites' insecurity about their own values 
> that encourages their frenzied attacks on religion. by Frank 
> Furedi")
> The piece is a defense of C.S. Lewis as a hook for attacking the 
> left
> for being "intolerant" toward religion. aldaily couples it with an
> equally stupid and vicious attack on Richard Dawkins' recent anti-
> religion BBC special.

The whole article seems to be one of those "a plague
on all your houses" kind of essays, that Furedi and
his associates from the former RCP seem predisposed
to writing. He bashes the secular left and then turns around
to bash liberals who seek to make appeals on the
basis of religious faith. There is no reason why
we cannot view C.S. Lewis as having been at
once, a fine scholar of English literature (I believe
Carrol Cox has made that assertion more than
once), a good storyteller and an author of rather
tiresome religious apologetics.

I haven't seen the film Narnia, but as I recall Yoshie
rather liked it and as far as I can tell, she has not
"found God" nor experienced any visions of Jesus
as a hologram (as Naomi Wolf is purported to have
experienced recently).

> Furedi's piece itself is mildly interesting. Its logic is somewhat
> akin to Todd Gitlin's baiting of antiwar activists only more 
> extreme.
> The main reason I even mention it though is to draw attention to
> what Phillip Pullman has said about Lewis (he abhors him for all the
> right reasons), and to encourage everyone to read Pullman's "His
> Dark Materials" series.
> Lewis and Pullman are both amazingly readable in totally different
> ways -- but Pullman proves an atheist can write an fantasy novel
> as good as there's ever been: exciting, heartbreaking, thought-
> provoking, and thoroughly anti-religion.
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