Fantasy and science fiction

My daughter borrowed the video of Miyazaki’s movie ゲド戦記.  I have seen this movie before. I found it intriguing, but rather unsatisfying. There were many themes or echoes of earlier Miyazaki movies, like the witch who held the heart of the main character – an idea found also in Howl’s Moving Castle (itself, based on a British novel).

When I was a teenager, I read a great deal of science fiction, and tho I read less of that genre now, I still enjoy science-fiction movies such as I, Robot, Blade Runner, and Avatar. The Miyazaki movie is based on a series of books by the American science fiction writer, Ursula Le Guin. Wikipedia tells us that

In the past, Le Guin had rejected Hayao Miyazaki’s offer to create a film based on the series, but due to her love of his films, Le Guin granted Studio Ghibli the rights. The story is based mainly on elements of the third and fourth novels of Earthsea; however, Le Guin has stated that she found this rendition of her work “disappointing” and untrue to the spirit of Earthsea.

Le Guin was very critical of The Dark Tower, a science-fiction story supposedly written by C.S. Lewis:she thought it embarrassingly bad. Later, Le Guin read a book  disputing that The Dark Tower had in fact been written by Lewis. The book was by Kathryn Lindskoog and was called The C.S. Lewis Hoax. After reading it, Le Guin changed her mind about Lewis:

I finished it liking Lewis, as man and artist, better than I had ever done before.

Kathryn Lindskoog was a fan of C.S. Lewis and wrote her thesis about his work. She went to England to meet C.S. Lewis and met him in Oxford in 1956. She wrote about her meeting him here.

3 thoughts on “Fantasy and science fiction”

  1. 「顔を持つまで」は、ギリシャ神話の「エロスとプシュケ」をもとにした物語で、姉オリュアルの視点で語られます。父の王国に住むオリュアルは、腹違いの妹プシュケをきつねと呼ばれる男と共に心から慈しんで育てます。プシュケは美しさゆえに崇拝されますが、その信仰がうまくいかないとなると、人々から恨まれ神への捧げものになります。オリュアルはプシュケとの再会を果たして幸せな時を取り戻すべく再々旅に出ます。そして旅先での思いがけない体験はその後の人生を一変させます。面絹をつけたオリュアルは、父亡きあとの国を統治しながら自己の内面への旅に出ます。自分の与えた愛、受けた愛は何だったのか、旅先で聞いたのは真の神の声だったのか、、、。

    1. Thanks for not “spoiling” the story, and enticing others to read it. I look forward to reading this story. This story is a Greek myth, but Lewis was a Christian. I assume he used this myth to tell some truth about human beings’ spirituality. Lewis believed myth was sometimes the best way to express truth. What was Lewis trying to tell in this story?
      By the way, comments in Japanese are always welcome.

  2. I finished “Till We have faces“, as I wanted to know more about Lewis’ thinking. It was not so difficult to follow the story itself, but I don’t know if I could understand well the references which were scattered in this story. It is based on the Myth, “Eros and Psyche“. (Eros is son of Goddess of Beauty, Aphrodite, and she gave Psyche many difficult tasks instead of their marriage.)” Till We have faces” is told by Psyche’s elder sister who loved Psyche as if she was her mother. The sister, struggling with her emotion, asks herself what is love and what is faith.

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