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June 1, 2008

Such a controversial land, which is hard to accept considering that when I first read it as a child I thought that everyone knew and loved Narnia. Now, as a *gasp* semi-adultish-type-person, I find it endlessly debated. Is it too Christian, is it instead heretical, or do people just read between the lines too much? Then there’s the Problem of Susan, and the discussions of sexism. Yeah, Susan ends up banished, and she and Lucy aren’t given the same glory as the boys, but at the same time Lucy is obviously the most faithful and true child of Narnia, so what are we to think? Then, I read on Wikipedia, are the absurd accusations of racism. (Yeah, it’s racist…as racist as James Bond, Indiana Jones, and any move which portrays the bad guys as being of a different race as the good guys. It wouldn’t be Narnia if the good guys weren’t British. Deal.)
My pet theory about all this controversy: it’s too real. Narnia manages to push way too many buttons because we can identify with these characters. They’re far from perfect, as Edmund’s story illustrates, and each has flaws which have to be overcome. We identify with these characters, and so any possibly flaws in philosophy may also be our flaws, suddenly brought to light. Despite the talking animals, gimmicky magic, and simplicity of character development, we see something of our world in these books, and that strikes a nerve because this world is so far from perfect.
Any thoughts?

One Comment leave one →
  1. June 5, 2008 9:07 pm

    Well yes, all that, but most importantly, Peter’s kind of a prissy dick.

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