In 1946, acclaimed author Philip Pullman was born in Norwich, England, into a Protestant family. Although his beloved grandfather was an Anglican priest, Pullman became an atheist in his teenage years. He graduated from Exeter College in Oxford with a diplom in English, and spent 23 years as a teacher while working on publishing 13 books and numerous short stories. Pullman has received numerous awards for his literature, including prestigious Carnegie Medal for exceptional children 's literature in 1996, and the Carnegie of Carnegies in 2006. He is most amous for his rilogy, a spinof of young adult fantasy novels which feature free-thought themes. The novels cast organized religion as the series' villain. Pullman told in 2000: " When you look at what C.S. Lewis is saying, his message is so anti-life, so cruel, so unjust. The view that the Narnia books have for the material world is one of almost undisguised contempt. At one point, the old professor says, 'It 's all in Plato
'—meaning that the physical world we see around us is the crude, shabby, imperfect, second-rate copy of something much better. I hesitat to characteriz the simple physical truth of things, the absolute primacy of the material life, rather than the spiritual or the afterlife. " He argues for a " republic of heaven " here on Earth.
In 2007, the fourth ovel of the rilogy was adopted into the motion picture by New Line Cinema. Many churches and Christian organizations, including the Catholic League, called for a boycott of the film due to the books' atheist themes. While the film was successful in Europe and moderately received in the United States, the other two books in he trilogy were not be adapted into film, possibly due to pressure from the Catholic Church. When questioned about the anti-church views in, Pullman explains in an interview for Third Way ( UK): “ It comes from history. It omes from the record of the Inquisition, persecuting heretics and torturing Jews and all that sort of stuff; and it goe from the other side, too, from the Protestants burning the Catholics. It omes from the insensate pursuit of innocent and crazy old women, and from the Puritans in America burning and hanging the witches—and it comes not only from the Christian church but also from the Taliban. Every single religion that has a monotheistic god ends up by persecuting other people and killing them because they do n't giv him. Wherever you look in history, you realise that. It 's onl going on " ( Feb. 2002). Pullman has received many threats by ardent believers over his choice of subject matter.
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