Holy Terror: Understanding Religion and Violence in Popular Culture

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Nonspecific Binding
  • Copyright: 2014-10-16
  • Publisher: Routledge
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The authors of religious scriptures have rarely had difficulty enhancing sacred narratives with the rhetoric of violence. The phenomenon continues in the easy cohabitation of violence and religion in film, music and literature, and this raises a number of important questions: To what degree does violent rhetoric shape belief and values? How might we understand the social function of violence in popular discourses? How might we understand audience empathy with violent protagonists in popular narratives? What is the significance of violence being associated with particular religious groups or ideas in the media? Reflecting on these issues in depth and with striking originality, scholars of religious studies, biblical studies, film studies and sociology have analysed a range of phenomena, from the discourse of terrorism to the spectacle of World Wrestling Entertainment. The result is a vital contribution to understanding an area of religious and cultural discourse that is relevant to us all.

Author Biography

Eric Christianson is an independent scholar based in the UK. He is the author of Ecclesiastes Through the Centuries (Blackwell, 2007) and co-editor, with Peter Francis William Telford, of Cinma Divinit: Religion, Theology and the Bible in Film (SCM, 2006). Christopher Partridge is Professor of Religious Studies, Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion, Lancaster University, UK. He is co-editor, with Eric Christianson, of The Lure of the Dark Side: Satan and Western Demonology in Popular Culture (Equinox, 2009) and author of Dub in Babylon: Understanding the Evolution and Significance of Dub Reggae in Jamaica and Britain from King Tubby to Post-punk (Equinox, 2010)

Table of Contents

Introductionp. 1
In the Discourse of Terrorism
Seeing Beyond Fear of Terrorism on the Webp. 10
Violent Superwomen: Super Heroes or Super Villains? Judith, Wonder Woman and Lynndie Englandp. 25
In Cinema
Biblical Epic and the American State: The Traitor and Sanctified Violence in Esther and the King (1960)p. 42
Cease to Exist: Manson Family Movies and Mysticismp. 53
The End is...a Blockbuster: The Use and Abuse of the Apocalypse in Contemporary Filmp. 63
A Case Study: The Violence of The Passion of the Christ
Counterfictional Suffering: Authenticity and Artistry in The Passion of the Christp. 82
Controlling Passions: The Regulation, Censorship and Classification of the Violence in The Passion of the Christ within Britainp. 93
The Passion as Media Spectaclep. 103
Protest as Reaction, Reaction as Text: The (Con)Textual Logics of The Last Temptation of Christ and The Passion of the Christp. 112
In Sport
The Religious Significance of Violence in Footballp. 122
Cultivated Outrage: World Wrestling Entertainment and the Religious Excess of Violencep. 135
Notesp. 150
Bibliographyp. 158
Filmographyp. 173
Indexp. 175
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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