Talk:The Golden Compass

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The movie was a disappointment to atheists because it toned down the anti-religious message of the book. See Frank Furedi --Ed Poor Talk 16:44, 10 December 2007 (EST)

They don't have to worry. The director made it clear that he's only doing that with the first movie to get in an young audience, then he's going to unleash the full anti-God diatribe. I feel sorry for those parents who believe they are allowing their children to watch a regular fun kids film. Learn together 17:47, 10 December 2007 (EST)
i don't want to seem like of those liberals that always has to get a word in edgewise (even though i am one of those liberals) but isn't it up to the parents to research the things their children watch instead of letting them jump into something blindly? I'm curious as to what people think.--Incide 17:44, 24 January 2008 (EST)
That's absurd. On that note, I don't remember the death of any god being a major plotpoint. One of the gay angels, yes. Death of a god? Not so much. Barikada 19:24, 24 January 2008 (EST)
I'm pretty sure 'God' died, Barikada. There's a whole scene about an incredibly withered, ancient angel slumped on a palanquin. It's just that in that scene, Pullman never mentions Him by name. I actually thought it was quite a clever literary technique - dethroning Him in figurative terms and all that. :D Underscoreb 17:22, 6 May 2008 (EDT)

Pullman himself discusses his views and why he wrote the books, and it's not just to strike a blow against authoritarianism; this article will not be morphed to say as much. Learn together 19:22, 6 May 2008 (EDT)


Please, let's not start an edit war. I understand you want to revert my edits[[1]], but can we discuss them here first? Young adult fiction is generally written for readers between 12 and 18 [2]. I know we're not big on citing Wikipedia here, but it's not like literary demographics are a controversial subject... As for Pullman's comments, fair enough - although he says it's an attack on any system in which control is enforced through faith. Perhaps instead of reverting it though, you could simply edit that specific section and add content. So with that in mind, do you think we could revert the reversion of the reversion? :D Underscoreb 19:29, 6 May 2008 (EDT)

You'll have to convince me that the information you presented was heading towards the direction of truth. The movie DVD has been advertised on Nick, hardly a hotbed for the 12 to 18 year olds. If you've seen the displays with the cute white bears that they add with the movie, that's hardly 12 to 18 either now is it?
A more appropriate question would be what was lacking from the article as written that needed to be expanded that would still follow what was actually occurring? Learn together 19:38, 6 May 2008 (EDT)
The Golden Compass is a novel aimed at 12-18 year olds that has recently been adapted into a film. Perhaps we could compromise on creating a separate subheading discussing the film version (which I agree was aimed at a much broader demographic)?
I'm not trying to be snarky, but it's my understanding that we accept genuine submissions and then improve on them, not reject them because they don't meet our standards for comprehensiveness. Underscoreb 19:55, 6 May 2008 (EDT)
Underscoreb asked me to offer some advice here. It appears from the edit comments and the discussion here that the main or only issue is over the target age range, which make me wonder why all the rest was reverted as well. Assuming the facts are correct (e.g. that it has also been published as "Northern Lights"), and ignoring the question of the target age, then I generally prefer Underscoreb's version as providing more (and useful) information.
As for the target age range, I'm not sufficiently familiar enough with the book or movie to express a preference, but do wonder if there is much point in being as specific as "12 to 18", even if nominally that is true. Would it be okay to say "younger readers", or is that too vague?
Or is it really necessary to say much about the target range? Parents reading this will be more interested in the content than the target age (i.e. they will likely already have decided whether or not the book or movie suits their children as far as age is concerned).
Despite Underscoreb's claim that "young adult" means "12-18 year olds", I would think that most would expect the term to mean from 18 to somewhere in the 20s. Whilst I wouldn't have thought that Wikipedia was particularly biased on this sort of thing, the referenced article does actually seem to contain a fair amount of opinion (e.g. " displayed a truer, darker side of young adult life because it was written by a young adult."), and has very few references backing up the content. So I wonder if one can accept what Wikipedia says here, but even if it is correct, I think the term is misleading, as I don't think most would understand it that way.
Philip J. Rayment 22:44, 6 May 2008 (EDT)
Thanks Philip, I appreciate your objectivity. I've made the appropriate edits in what I think is a compromise. By all means feel free to make additional edits, guys, but let's act in good faith and stop with the reversions. :D Underscoreb 17:22, 7 May 2008 (EDT)
I already added in appropriate additions. This will not be turned into a "he said she said" with some people think its just an attack against authoritarianism or comparing it to a classic like Paradise Lost. It's not Paradise Lost. In Paradise Found, obtained by killing God or any vestiges of Him. We will not water this down to ignore that. Learn together 17:39, 7 May 2008 (EDT)

I enter this discussion in response to Ub's request and after seeing this edit:

While some interpret it as a blatant attack on Christianity, others argue that it represents a triumph over authoritarianism

First of all, I don't see why we have to maintain a stance of neutrality. We are not Wikipedia, and we're not journalists. The author said he's killing God and that ought to settle it. Moreover, even a liberal source like Newsweek wrote that " one over four feet tall could mistake the Magisterium for anything but an oppressive theocracy."

The author is obviously portraying the Christian Church in the worst possible light. He accuses it of authoritarianism, and so it makes sense for Conservatives to respond to this.

Certainly most churches have a dogma and a top-down governance which cannot be altered democratically. But since people (at least in the English-speaking West) can "vote with their feet" (i.e., join another church) then the label of theocracy is misapplied. The world in which a theocratic agency kidnaps and tortures children might have described the Spanish Inquisition centuries ago, but all of Christianity denounces this as an aberration. The closest thing in modern history would be Communism and Nazism.

It's ludicrous to think we have to be "neutral" on questions like:

  1. Is Pullman talking about the Judeo-Christian God?
  2. Is Pullman accusing the Christian Church of being authoritarian and/or theocratic?

Let's concentrate on issues like the age range of the target audience. I haven't heard of teenagers or preteens reading the book, because it's not as fun as Harry Potter. But I'm open about that. I'm not open about whether the book is anti-religious. On that score, Pullman couldn't be more blatant. --Ed Poor Talk 09:57, 8 May 2008 (EDT)

Thankyou, Ed - I appreciate your comments, especially when considered alongside Philip's. Unfortunately Learntogether has threatened me with a 5-year ban, which is disappointing (and surprising, given that his userpage tells me he "is pleased for people of all viewpoints who honestly contribute"). He has nonetheless requested sources to support my edits, which is fair enough.

Do you read? Let's make this abundantly clear, I will block you for good if you do that one more time. You claimed, when you went crying to Philip, that you had ALREADY SOURCED YOUR WORK when I reverted it. I called you for lying. Don't twist that to I'm threatening you unless you source your work. We are talking about your LYING, that you had already sourced your work. Do you get it now? Learn together 17:32, 8 May 2008 (EDT)
Learntogether, I was in the process of adding sources when I found that you had already reverted the edits I had made thus far. I didn't want to inflame the situation, so I thought I'd let it lie. In any case, what do you think of the sources I've cited below? Underscoreb 18:03, 8 May 2008 (EDT)

But I maintain that while he did say he was "undermining Christianity", he's added that there's more to it than that. From his official website[3]:

Some of the articles and talks I've written are to do with the subject of religion, which I think is a very interesting one. The religious impulse – which includes the sense of awe and mystery we feel when we look at the universe, the urge to find a meaning and a purpose in our lives, our sense of moral kinship with other human beings – is part of being human, and I value it. I'd be a damn fool not to.

But organised religion is quite another thing. The trouble is that all too often in human history, churches and priesthoods have set themselves up to rule people's lives in the name of some invisible god (and they're all invisible, because they don't exist) – and done terrible damage. In the name of their god, they have burned, hanged, tortured, maimed, robbed, violated, and enslaved millions of their fellow-creatures, and done so with the happy conviction that they were doing the will of God, and they would go to Heaven for it.

That is the religion I hate, and I'm happy to be known as its enemy.

He's also said in an interview with the Archbishop of Canterbury that Jesus doesn't feature in Pullman's Church because it represents a religion that has lost its core values[4].

I think he's mentioned once, in the context of this notion of wisdom that works secretly and quietly, not in the great courts and palaces of the earth, but among ordinary people and so on. And there are some teachers who have embodied this quality, but whose teaching has perhaps been perverted or twisted or turned, and been used in a fashion that they themselves didn't either desire or expect or could see happening.

I felt that maybe the nuances of Pullman's position (which is one shared by other atheists, myself included) might be of interest to other Conservapedia readers. Underscoreb 17:18, 8 May 2008 (EDT)

And incidentally, perhaps Dr. Fox's comments could be moved to the 'Criticisms' section, since that's what they are. Underscoreb 17:26, 8 May 2008 (EDT)

I find your comments confusing. Pullman seems to be simultaneously confirming and denying an anti-religious message: confirming in the sense of justifying, if that's what "there's more to it" is supposed to mean.

But this *yawn* is merely the usual atheistic argument: God can't exist because (1) the church is so corrupt and/or (2) the concept of God in the Bible is [worse than Satan].

If you're really interested, you might try summarizing Pullman's reasoning in addition to showing how he expresses his anti-religious message in his books.

By the way, "young adult" seems to be a publishing category for kids anywhere from 12 to 20. It's not the same as a strictly age-based demographic for consumers in general, where I suppose "Young Adults" are 18-30 or 18-25. --Ed Poor Talk 23:18, 8 May 2008 (EDT)

My edit

Can someone reinstate my edit please? I can't edit the page.PashaSuez 11:07, 8 May 2008 (EDT)

Honestly this is ridiculous, this is a slapdash article made of up quotes compiled by people who only seem to have second-hand knowledge of the topic.PashaSuez 11:14, 8 May 2008 (EDT)

I have also just come back to this article intending to do a bit more tidying up (e.g., to correct a number of grammatical errors and attempt to organise the material, which at present is scattered unhelpfully). It's a bit annoying to find it locked! If you have a problem with the edits of one editor, surely the right approach is to engage in a discussion, not peremptorily to lock the article. Humblpi 11:35, 8 May 2008 (EDT)
For the time being please supply the edits that you feel would be helpful/improvements. Your previous edit was an improvement and I'm guessing other alterations you would wish to make will be as well. Learn together 11:56, 8 May 2008 (EDT)
Well, for a start, why is the comment by Quinn Fox given star billing and not listed in an appropriate place alongside the other commentaries? It's surely better to describe the book/film before you start pulling it to pieces. I won't bother to list the numerous typos for you - you can find them yourself or unlock the article so that I can fix them for you. Humblpi 12:29, 8 May 2008 (EDT)

It appears to be an anti-religious book and film - masquerading as a perfectly fine adventure tale like The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.

The Narnia books are intentionally (and openly) pro-Christian. They are filled with Christian values, and the kingly character of Aslan is unmistably a Christ figure. You'd have to be well under 8 years old to miss the "crucifixion" parallels of an innocent being dying "for" a "traitor".

Compass is just as anti-Christian as the C.S. Lewis tale, but its defenders are in denial. --Ed Poor Talk 16:32, 8 May 2008 (EDT)

Feature film section needs slight correction

The figures for dollar amounts need dollar signs in front of them. Jinxmchue 23:57, 10 May 2008 (EDT)