Kiss me, I'm Catholic.

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Faith and Fiction

New article on The Catholic Novel by Matthew Anger. It's seldom that Seattle Catholic posts an article about Catholic literature, so I thought it worthy of note.

"While the famous French novelist Georges Bernanos did not like "preachy" writers, he was equally offended by authors who claimed to be Catholic but whose writings betrayed sin and despair. He was a harsh critic of the controversial works of Francois Mauriac. For him, Mauriac was "the tortured author of so many books in which despair of the flesh sweats on every page, like muddy water from the walls of a cellar." Needless to say, the moral climate of fiction writing has not generally improved since Bernanos' day."

"As Flannery O'Connor explains, the Catholic artist can only address mature themes when his (or her) approach is both religiously and morally mature. "Do not make the absurd attempt," she says, "to sever in yourself the artist and the Christian. They are one, if you really are a Christian." It is this very fixity on metaphysical grounds that allows one greater freedom aesthetically without being hampered by false, worldly standards."

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