f a i t h * i n * f i c t i o n: Myths Made Modern

f a i t h * i n * f i c t i o n

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Myths Made Modern

Canongate Publishers is diving headlong into the realm of myth and metaphor with a new series that will introduce ancient myths retold in modern novels by a fairly impressive list of authors. Salon.com has an article about the series that tackles our human need and desire for myths.

As I've mentioned before Neil Gaiman has single-handedly done an enormous job of reinventing mythology for the post-modern age with his Sandman series and the book American Gods.

These things are going to look dangerous and depressing to many Christians who see these things as replacements for the Gospel. But for storytellers and artists, a world taken with myth is much more our turf than a world obsessed with reason and science. Ill-fitting evangelical poster boy C.S. Lewis wrapped himself in myth and classic literature and wrote a book, Till We Have Faces, that looks like it could fit quite neatly into Canongate's line.

What's the point of this?

I think some of us need to begin reexploring the place that symbol and metaphor can play in our novels. I think we need to risk insensate adherence to our established theologies for the chance to explore grand themes that can't be boiled down to four spiritual laws. Are these things going to be published within CBA? Don't know. Could be. But our stories need to be able to exist outside the context of an evangelical vocabulary that is extremely modern and tends to be insular and less than expansive in its breadth of what it's able to express.