The Grail Code 
Objectifying women in the name of the sacred feminine

Brad Kirkegard has a very thoughtful and charitable article in the Journal of Lutheran Ethics about The Da Vinci Code, and in particular about a strange irony in the way that novel presents women.

Though Dan Brown’s novel talks a lot about the “sacred feminine,” women don’t amount to much in the story. The Mary Magdalene of the Bible is a strong character who overcomes social assumptions about the role of women and actually gets the whole Church moving at a crucial point in history. On the other hand, says Mr. Kirkegard,

“Taking a specific textual tradition that celebrates Mary’s importance for her mind and perception, he has made her and women once more important only as objects and vessels to be saved by sexuality and particularly by child birth.”

Mr. Kirkegard is a lot more charitable than I usually am. He probably gives the revisionist historians more credit than I would, and he’s probably more sympathetic than I would be toward some of the first-century heresies. His patience seems a bit strained by time he gets to his last paragraph, but on the whole his article is a model of charity for those of us who find ourselves forced to talk about The Da Vinci Code, even when we’d much rather be talking about Walter Map.

4 Responses to “Objectifying women in the name of the sacred feminine”

  1. Mike Says:

    Amen to your reading of The Da Vinci Code. What else are we to make of the conclusion? The meaning of life seems to be, plain and simple, the fulfillment of male sexuality. Like many males, I’ve had this thought cross my mind once or twice. But I don’t think it was the profound epiphany Dan Brown makes it out to be.

  2. Pauli Says:

    I realize that posting this link on this blog represents moving from the sublime to the ridiculous (if not the completely grotesque), but my friend Nate and I developed the following product in “honor” of DVC.

    The Da Vinci Toad. Leonardo’s long lost first draft, often referred to by art historians as the “Toada Lisa”, has been found (coincidentally coinciding with the release of the biggest block buster movie of the year).

    Years spent drinking and playing R&R music together has made us really good at mocking things other people come up with. Which in the case of DVC is really appropriate. I guess everyone does have a vocation in life!

  3. Mike Says:

    That’s great! I’m buying one for my subjectified wife.

  4. Mike Says:

    I wonder if the name Kirkegard almost predestines you. I guess not, though. Old Soren wasn’t known for his “thoughtful and charitable” tone in argument.

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