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Lecture 16

ENGB35H3 Lecture Notes - Lecture 16: Antireligion, Puritans, Magisterium

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Natalie Rose

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ENGB35 – Lecture 16 – The Golden Compass
“It would happen like this.”
“This is Limehouse, and here is the child who is going to disappear” (Ch. 3,
pg. 42-43)
“The lady knocks, the door is opened, they go in, the door is closed. Tony will
never come out – at least, by that entrance; and he’ll never see his mother
again. She, poor drunken thing, will think he’s run away, and when she
remembers him, she’ll think it was her fault and sob her sorry heart out”
oNot reassuring the child reader that everything is going to be alright
oSympathy for the mother that she will never see her child again
oAdult reader horror, heart wrenching
oDiscomforting for the reader
“Dust is something bad, something wrong, something evil and wicked.
Grownups and their demons are infected with Dust so deeply that it’s too late
for them. They can’t be helped… But a quick operation on children means
they’re safe from it. Dust just won’t stick to theme very again. They’re safe
and happy”
“At the age we call puberty, the age you’re coming to very soon, darling,
demons bring all sort of trouble some thoughts and feelings and that’s what
lets Dust in
“It’s physical proof that something happens when innocence is changed into
‘Remember, they were naked in the garden, they were like children, their
demons took on any form they desired”
“Your eyes shall be opened, and your demons shall assume their true forms
and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil”
‘The Magisterium decided that Dust was the physical evidence for original sin”
“Dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return” (Genesis 3:19)
oDust is the particles of the sin
oInnocence knowledge, experience = childhood adulthood
oDisobedience knowledge
oAdulthood, sin, materiality, the body
oChurch’s view of childhood = Romantic
oDoesn’t present the puritan view of childhood
oChurch wants to freeze the children as children and cutting off them
from the demons
oLewis “was frightened and appalled at the notion of wanting to grow
Disobedience revalued:
“I thought wasn’t it a good thing that Eve did, isn’t curiosity a valuable
quality? Shouldn’t she be praised for risking this? It wasn’t, after all, that she
was after money or gold or anything, she was after knowledge. What could
be possibly wrong with that?
The power of the story cf. Lewis
o“’Thou shalt not’ might reach the head, but it takes ‘Once upon a time’
to reach the heart” (Pullman)
oBanned by the Halton region Catholic School Board for being “anti-
God, anti-Catholic and anti-religion”
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