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The Gospel According to Science Fiction: From the Twilight Zone to the Final Frontier
Westminster John Knox Press / 2007 / Paperback
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"As conventional wisdom would have it, science and religion are opposing forces, struggling for influence over our minds, our souls, and our public finding dollars. On the other hand we have science, alternately described as either the quest for truth amidst ancient superstitions, or the cold, soulless attempt to turn human beings into gods. On the other hand is faith; the core beliefs that give our lives meaning, or the illusions that hold us back from fulfilling our potential...
"But what if the distinction between science and religion is wrong? What if the apparent tension between faith and reason is simply an illusion created by a few overzealous believers on both sides who hope that one will eliminate the other? What if science fiction, instead of simply being the cool, rationalistic prediction of things to come, is something more primal, more spiritual---the religious texts of the future?"-from the introduction
In this thorough and engaging book, Gabriel McKee explores the inherent theological nature of science fiction, using illustrations from television shows, literature, and films. Science fiction, he believes, helps us understand not only who we are but who we will become. It can teach us more about how to think of God and can help us keep our beliefs alive in a world of rapidly changing technology. Indeed, McKee argues, science fiction can help forge the faith of the future.
Gabriel McKee is the author of Pink Beams of Light from the God in the Gutter: The Science-Fictional Religion of Philip K. Dick, as well as articles on religion in popular culture for the Revealer and Nerve. He earned his Master of Theological Studies from Harvard Divinity School and lives in Brooklyn, New York, with his wife, Gwynne, a playwright.
In this thorough and engaging book, Gabriel McKee explores the inherent theological nature of science fiction, using illustrations from television shows, literature, and films. Science fiction, he believes, helps us understand not only who we are but who we will become. McKee organizes his chapters around theological themes, using illustrations from authors such as Isaac Asimov and H. G. Wells, television shows such as Star Trek and The Twilight Zone, and films such as The Matrix and Star Wars. With its extensive bibliography and index, this is a book that all serious science fiction fans--not just those with a theological interest--will appreciate.
Gabriel McKee earned his Master of Theological Studies from Harvard Divinity School. He is the author of Pink Beams of Light From the God in the Gutter: The Science-Fictional Religion of Philip K. Dick, as well as articles on religion in popular culture for the Revealer and Nerve.
David Crumm and ReadTheSpirit.com
Science Fiction "is an invaluable tool in envisioning the future of our science, our society and our spirituality. SF tells us not only what the future may bring, but hat we want the future to bring." So writes Gabriel McKee in his "Gospel According to ..." volume on "Science Fiction."
McKee knows his stuff when it comes to the field he abbreviates as SF. His wide-ranging essays touch on themes as vast as the meaning of human existence and the possibility of an afterlife. Along the way, he tries to weave together Christianity, thousands of years of philosophy and examples from SF novelists as well as Hollywood movies.
It's a fairly focused book, so it will be great for groups whose members are intrigued by SF. But this one will fly over the heads of people who don't care for the genre.
There also are intriguing gaps that readers may want to debate. For instance, McKee ponders Philip K. Dick's "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?" but says nothing about the "Blade Runner" adaptation.
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