[Marxism] Hitchens gets Pullman wrong -- thank god! (pun intended)

Greg McDonald gregmc59 at gmail.com
Sun Jul 11 12:48:19 MDT 2010

On Sun, Jul 11, 2010 at 12:29 PM, Andrew Pollack <acpollack2 at gmail.com> wrote:

> When I saw the Times had chosen Christopher Hitchens to review Philip
> Pullman's great new novel I was appalled, and terrified that he would
> praise it (as both of them are atheists, albeit the former a
> reactionary and the latter a progressive) and thus make progressives
> shy away from the book.
> Fortunately Hitchens hated it, for all the right reasons!
> Above all Hitchens can't stomach the idea that Pullman resurrects the
> militant, antiauthoritiarian Jesus, and has him counterpose his
> teachings to the proposal for a Church to institutionalize and thus
> distort, them.
> Pullman's Jesus, whatever his idiosyncrasies and irrationalities, is
> the Jesus of Carl Sandburg and of Kurt Vonnegut (see
> http://www.vonnegutweb.com/archives/arc_carlsandburgaward.html and
> Vonnegut's "Palm Sunday.")
> I'd encourage everyone to read Pullman's book, as well as the "His
> Dark Materials" trilogy and the Sally Lockhart mysteries.
> Hitchens review is at:
> http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/11/books/review/Hitchens-t.html?_r=1&scp=9&sq=hitchens&st=cse

For a good treatment of the "anti-authoritarian" Jesus, from a
post-Bultmann form criticism perspective, see "The Politics of Jesus"
by John Howard Yoder.

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