Un nouveau livre sur les relations entre la science-fiction et la catholicisme

Science Fiction and Catholicism: The Rise and Fall of the Robot Papacy

Jim Clarke

30 Jul 2019

ISBN 9781780240848 (Paperback)
292 pp., Free UK Shipping

Ce livre présente les relations entre la science-fiction et le catholicisme depuis plusieurs décennies. Cette étude, bien qu’orientée idéologiquement, est intéressante car elle s’attarde sur l’influence de la théologie sur le genre. Si les catholiques ne condamnent pas moralement le genre, certains grands auteurs, comme Jules Verne, étaient de cette confession. De même, des personnages influents au Vatican revendiquent une influence de la science-fiction sur leur parcours scientifique et théologique. Guy Consolmagno, directeur de l’observatoire du Vatican, souligne par exemple l’importance de cet imaginaire sur son orientation spirituelle:

« One of the charms that attracted me to science fiction — and I confess probably drives others away — is the fun of ferreting out those details, solving the puzzle that the author has set for their readers. After all, that’s precisely what we have to do when we try to understand the universe we study as scientists. God is a master of including … the ultimate science fiction author!

As I have said, the puzzle-solving skills I learned from reading science fiction are the skills I use as a scientist. But more than that, the very reason I wanted to study planets was because I first encountered them in science fiction, as places where people have adventures.

Our Catholic faith can teach us how to see our own story. Adventures set on other planets show that the laws of right and wrong are as universal as the law of gravity. And a Catholic science fiction also can remind us that what the world counts as a happy ending is not always the happiest ending ».

(L’Osservatore Romano
Weekly Edition in English
28 July 2017, page 4)

Il serait exagéré de considérer la science-fiction comme un genre purement catholique. Il existe en effet de nombreux courants, provenant de toutes les confessions religieuses.

Le livre de Jim Clarke est toutefois polémique et pourrait générer un débat sur la valeur morale d’une science-fiction qui pourrait être assimilée en partie à une critique de l’imaginaire chrétien au nom d’une mythologie technoscientifique en voie d’émergence, susceptible de devenir une religion globale à mesure de l’affaiblissement du christianisme devant les progrès de la science.

Présentation de l’auteur:

About Aliens? Absolutely. Robots? Of course. But why are there so many priests in space?

For over a century, Science Fiction has had an obsession with Roman Catholicism. The religion is both SF’s dark twin and its dirty secret.

In this first ever study of the relationship between Catholicism and SF, Jim Clarke explores the genre’s co-dependence and antagonism with the largest sect of Christianity. Tracking its origins all the way back to the pamphlet wars of the Enlightenment and SF’s Gothic origins, Clarke unveils a story of robot Popes, Jesuit missions to the stars, first contact between aliens and the Inquisition, and rewritings of the Reformation.

Featuring close readings of over fifty SF texts, Clarke examines how the genre’s greatest invention might just be the imaginary Catholicism it repeatedly and obsessively depicts, a faux Catholicism at odds with the religion’s own intriguing interest in both science and the possibility of alien life.

Introduction
The Contested Territories of Science Fiction and Catholicism

Chapter 1: Critical Mass
How Catholicism Became Science Fiction’s Counter-Narrative

Chapter 2: The Rise and Fall of the Robot Papacy
Catholicism and Machine Intelligence

Chapter 3: Missionaries to Alien Utopias
Exotheology and Catholicism in Science Fiction

Chapter 4: Unwriting the Reformation
Anti-Catholic Uchronias in Science Fiction

Conclusion

Works Cited

Index

Voir aussi cette présentation:

The first ever monograph to explore the intersection and influence of Catholicism upon speculative fiction. Ranging over seven centuries of interaction, from the Middle Ages to the 21st century, this monograph identifies an inherent anti-Catholicism at the heart of Anglophone speculative fiction. Via close theoretical readings of over 50 different SF novels and texts, the author reveals the enormous cross-fertilisation of ideas which SF and Catholicism have shared, each shaping the other and misunderstanding the other as a product of a fundamentally untrue ideological opposition.

https://pureportal.coventry.ac.uk/en/publications/science-fiction-and-catholicism-the-rise-and-fall-of-the-robot-pa

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