Perspectives On the Passion of the Christ: Religious Thinkers and Writers Explore the Issues Raised By the Controversial Movie

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9781401359591: Perspectives On the Passion of the Christ: Religious Thinkers and Writers Explore the Issues Raised By the Controversial Movie
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Since its release on Ash Wednesday 2004, The Passion of the Christ has become a commercial success of astonishing proportions, already ranking as one of the highest grossing films of all time. At the same time, it has created a torrent of controversy and debate, provoking passionate responsesboth negative and positivefrom people of widely divergent backgrounds and beliefs. It has exposed fundamental differences of opinion and belief about everything from the historical truth of the Bible to the political power of Hollywood.

Perspectives on the Passion of the Christ gathers together contributions from theologians, journalists, academics, and philosophers representing a wide spectrum of views and backgrounds. From the film's theological and historical underpinnings, to its cinematic and cultural implications, here is a balanced and thought-provoking exploration of the vital questions raised by The Passion of the Christ. Jews and Christians, evangelicals and agnostics, filmmakers and scholarsthe film elicits fascinating responses from all. Among others, Jon Meacham of Newsweek looks hard at the historical record and asks, "Who Really Killed Jesus" Rev. Susan Thistlethwaite asks why such an exceptionally violent movie has been embraced by so many conservative Christians and argues that The Passion of the Christ presents Jesus as a hero in a war movie; Rabbi Eugene Korn considers the movie's potential impact on interfaith relations; and Steve Martin offers an oblique comic view, from the perspective of a Hollywood insider.

Full of insight into a phenomenon that has raised so many burning and complex issues, this collection is the indispensable guide to understanding the cultural lightning rod that is The Passion of the Christ.

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Contributors include: Mary C. Boys, Deborah Caldwell, Philip A. Cunningham, Paula Fredriksen, Lawrence A. Frizzell, Eugene Korn, Linda Kulman, Amy-Jill Levine, James Martin, Steve Martin, Jon Meacham, John T. Pawlikowski, Stephen Prothero, Adele Reinhartz, Susan Brooks Thistlethwaite, Jay Tolson, Jim Wallis, Leon Wieseltier, Ben Witherington III

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