Homeland Mythology: Biblical Narratives in American Culture
Penn State Press, 10 սեպ, 2015 թ. - 288 էջ
Since 9/11, America has presented itself to the world as a Christianist culture, no less antimodern and nostalgic for an idealized past than its Islamist foes. The master-narrative both sides share might sound like this: Once upon a time, the values of the righteous community coincided with those of the state. Home and land were harmoniously united under God. But through intellectual pride (read: science) and disobedience (read: human rights), this God-blessed homeland was lost and is now worth every drop of blood it takes, ours and others’, to recover.
For Americans, the prime source for this once-and-future-kingdom myth is the Bible, with its many narratives of blessings gained, lost, and regained: the garden of Eden, the covenant with Abraham, the bondage in Egypt, the exodus under Moses, the glory of David and Solomon’s realm, the coming of the promised Messiah, his crucifixion, resurrection, and ascension into heaven, his apocalyptic return at the end of history, and his establishment of the earthly kingdom of God. As Homeland Mythology shows, these biblical narratives have, over time, inspired a multitude of nationalist narratives, myths ingeniously spun out to justify a number of decidedly unchristian policies and institutions—from Indian genocide, the slave trade, and the exploitation of immigrant workers to Manifest Destiny, imperial expansionism, and, most recently, preemptive war.
On March 25, 2001, George W. Bush shared a bit of political wisdom: “You can fool some of the people all of the time—and those are the ones you have to concentrate on.” The cynical use of religion to cloak criminal behavior is always worth exposing, but why our leaders lie to us is no longer a mystery. What does remain mysterious is why so many of us are disposed to believe their lies. The unexamined issue that this book addresses is, therefore, not the mendacity of the few, but the credulity of the many.
Արդյունքներ 33–ի 1-ից 5-ը:
In a decade of orange alerts and not-quite-cozy-enough basement safe rooms, “coming home” still brings to mind a simpler, more secure setting, a little house on the prairie, a time of quilts and comfort foods. “Going home,” on the other ...
After all, does not every generation follow its predecessors? Does it not pass and take its place in the past? As for the future, which will someday become the present, might it not already be “there,” and might not a mind superior to ...
... to appear envision a future that reinstates a past associated in their mind with righteous, wise, and heroic men. The process of human degeneration can stop, they believe, but only when a strict, godly government is put in place.
As Berlin's audience would have understood, the latter phrase appeared on plaques and samplers because it brought to mind the best-loved sentimental parlor song of the nineteenth century, John Howard Payne's “Home, Sweet Home.
This test, which to second-century readers would have brought to mind the attempts of Seleucid occupiers to Hellenize their Phoenician, Syrian, and Judaic provinces, suggests a ritual of a civil religion. Those who acquiesced in it ...