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Date: Wed, 15 Jan 2003 11:57:50 -0800
From: Michael Andre-Driussi 
Subject: (urth) DOORS: Goddess vs. Christianity

Roy wrote:
>You have noted Graves' position vis-a-vis earth and sky; needless to say,
>Graves' sympathies were with the goddess. Wolfe's, needless to say, are with
>the other side. That being so, North, the wannabe goddess-killer, would be,
>in effect, in the service of the God of the Bible. Green, following the
>goddess, would be lusting after the very sort of figure that the Old
>Testament prophets were forever railing against.


>That would make North a good guy, Green a bad guy, in Wolfe's cosmology,
>wouldn't it? How can this reading square with Wolfe's known religious views,
>and his own opinion that THERE ARE DOORS is his best book?

It is a pagan-sympathetic novel, even more so than the Soldier books set in
pre-Christian times.  In that interview that Nutria performed, Nutria made
a sketch or two at linking the Otherworld with Christianity (for example,
the Italian restaurant as representing the Roman Church), but Wolfe said
no, it was a pagan world, and I read it that way.

(Interview at http://www.op.net/~pduggan/wolfejbj.html)

The novel is full-bore Graves, if you like, and for the purposes of this
novel Wolfe adopts that point of view.  What surprises me is how, in the
process, he kind of beats the stuffing out of Chesterton, another Wolfe
hero (just as Graves would likely launch at such a thunder-god booster).

Likewise we can turn to politics.  Wolfe is on record as saying he is a
Republican (but with additional nuances we need not get into here).  As a
Republican, though, he can still be appalled by Oliver North and/or Gordon
Liddy and/or Richard Nixon.  William North was originally patterned after
Ollie North (says Wolfe in the interview) but later found a true source in
Gordon Liddy.  William North is a frightening character who speaks of Nixon
in rather zealous tones, yet this does not mean that Wolfe had left the
Republican party.

I have always thought that Herr Klamm was patterned after Henry Alfred



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