Christopher Gérard in 2012
|Occupation||writer and critic|
Christopher Gérard was born to an Irish mother and a Belgian father. At age twelve, he was the youngest member of a team of archeologists who searched a Merovingian necropolis in the Ardennes. He studied classical philology at the Université libre de Bruxelles and wrote a French translation of Emperor Julian's Against the Galilaeans, published in 1995. He became a language teacher by profession.
In 1992, he created and became the editor of the journal Antaios, intended as a continuation of the journal of the same name published by Mircea Eliade and Ernst Jünger from 1959 to 1971. The new Antaios became the main publication of the Société d'Etudes Polythéistesm, "Society for the Study of Polytheism", founded in 1998. During a visit to a Hanuman temple in Delhi, Gérard became convinced that it is possible for contemporary people to practice paganism. He lays out his approach to faith and ethics in the books Parcours païen (2000) and La Source pérenne (2007). His religious views are also reflected in multiple novels he has written.
An important influence on Gérard has been Ram Swarup, a Hindu proponent of a pagan revival in Europe. After developing a correspondence, the two met during Gérard's first visit to India, when Swarup functioned as an introductor of Indian society. The historian of religion Jean-François Mayer has written that Gérard's approach ties in with Hindu nationalist appeals from the 1980s and onwards for Europeans to use the living Hindu tradition to reconnect to their own paganism. According to Mayer, Gérard's work can be seen as part of the development of a "Western-Hindu 'pagan axis'".
Gérard is critical of modern pagans who enforce Christian demonization of paganism by embracing things such as Satanism and witchcraft. He has identified these practitioners as predominantly American, and has called their purported connections to pagan religions "a historical hallucination". He further criticizes the Wicca movement for what he calls "a consumeristic aspect". According to Gérard, "certain of these people will present themselves as Druids somewhere in Oregon for six months, then suddenly somewhere else they are Egyptian priests. It is neither profound, nor constructive. It is a parody."
In 2009, Gérard was awarded the Prix Félix Denayer from the Académie royale de langue et de littérature françaises de Belgique for the book Aux Armes de Bruxelles.
- Contre les Galiléens, translation and commentary, Ousia, 1995.
- Parcours païen, non-fiction, L’Âge d’Homme, 2000.
- Le Songe d’Empédocle, novel, L’Âge d’Homme, 2003. Prix E. Martin de l'A.E.B.
- Maugis, novel, L’Âge d’Homme, 2005.
- La Source pérenne, non-fiction, L'Âge d'Homme, 2007.
- Aux Armes de Bruxelles, hybrid, L'Âge d'Homme, 2009. Prix Félix Denayer.
- Porte Louise, novel, L’Âge d’Homme, 2010.
- "Voluptueux et stoïque. La face païenne de Montherlant", Montherlant aujourd'hui, vu par 15 écrivains et hommes de théâtre, non-fiction, Editions de Paris, 2012.
- Vogelsang ou la mélancolie du vampire, novel, L’Âge d’Homme, 2012. Prix Indications.
- Quolibets. Journal de lectures, non-fiction, L’Âge d’Homme, 2013.
- Osbert & autres historiettes, short stories, L’Âge d’Homme, 2014.
- Le Prince d'Aquitaine, novel, Pierre-Guillaume de Roux, 2018.
- Jacques Franck. 7 February 2001. L'étrange parcours d'un païen. La Libre Belgique.
- Jacques Franck. 13 April 2007. Le rêve d'un retour des dieux. La Libre Belgique.
- Hughes Henry. July 1999. Pagan Power in Modern Europe. Hinduism Today. Archived from the original on 20 October 2006.
- Jean-François Mayer. "Christopher Gérard, Parcours païen". Politica hermetica no. 15, 2001. pp. 100-101
- Prix Félix Denayer. Académie royale de langue et de littérature françaises de Belgique.
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