Monday, July 29, 2013

For Science!

We've taken a look at magic, the supernatural and the weird. And now for something completely different. Science! Science by definition, or at least by it's current definition deals with the empirical world, the one that we can touch, taste, smell see and hear. Well except for theoretical physics but that's closer to the subject of Religion anyways.

What with Harry Potter and other such books out there, not to mention the fact that imaginative people are rarely scientifically literate, Magic gets much more press in Christian fiction (whether for good or for evil) then Science does. It's not that Christian authors tend to see Science as an evil, but rather that it tends to be a rather non quantity. This is perhaps because Christianity honestly has a great dearth of good sci-fi novels.

This is not simply a recent trend though, this is all throughout history. You can find Christians among the great fantasy authors, the great drama authors and many more, but you won't find any among the great sci-fi authors. Now at this point a lot of people bring up C.S Lewis's space trilogy, which people argue is excellently written and a classic. True, but it's not exactly Science Fiction as it's main focus is the Supernatural and Philosophy not dealing with scientific themes. Other books lauded as Christian Science fiction such as the Wrinkle in Time tend to explore Philosophical themes rather then Scientific ones. Right now it seems that when a Christian writes 'science fiction' he or she tends to end up writing fantasy... in space.

Now there's nothing wrong with fantasy in space, but it would be interesting to see a Christian speculate like Asimov and Wells do about where current science will lead us. What moral dilemmas, what theological problems will arise from the new developments of science? Writing this sort of science fiction is important, because as science marches on the questions that are addressed in books will become the questions that are going to be addressed in reality.

Of course, I'm being a hypocrite here,  I've never written hard sci-fi in my life. But it would be interesting to do so...

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