Talk:Behold the Man (novel)

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Date?[edit]

This article gives two dates for the books release, which one is correct? YankeeDoodle14 00:20, 15 December 2006 (UTC)

If you're referring to the opening paragraph, then they both are. The original novella version of Behold The Man was published in the 1966. The expanded novel version was first published in 1969. I'll edit the opening to make this clearer. Perhaps there should be a section in this article detailing the differences between the two versions? Demos99 21:49, 2 February 2007 (UTC)

Intent to offend?[edit]

The following sentence gives me some concerns as to its accuracy: ""The Man", in Moorcock's interpretation, seems calculated to offend Christians everywhere: he's a neurotic, narcissistic slacker whose religious and sexual impulses often intermingle." First off, the words "seems calculated to offend Christians everywhere" are subjective. Although the subject matter maybe controversial Moorcock's intent was not to offend or even specifically attack Christianity; that is a popular misconception of the novel's impact.

I had a profound respect for Christianity and my own belief system is clearly a development of Christianity but I have an equally profound antagonism to the kind of debased, supersitious religiosity which passes for Christianity...As far as my book goes, it has never given offence to Christians of any denomination because it deals with problems of faith and of following in the footsteps of Christ.

— Michael Moorcock, [1]

I therefore suggest removing those words.

Secondly, with regards to the word "slacker": Glogauer's inherent personality flaw is not that he is primarily a 'waster', 'drifter' or 'idler' more that he allows others to define him because, until he discovers his 'purpose' as Christ's stand-in, he lacks any Ego. This is a significant theme in existentialist philosophy, which posits that "Existence precedes essence". Thus Glogauer engages in homosexual acts not because he is homosexual but because he has no reason not to go along with his 'abuser'. Similarly, he allows John the Baptist to believe him to be the Messiah because it is easier for him to do so than not. It's only when he discovers the historical Jesus to be a congenital idiot that he finally finds his vocation in life.

Lastly, I realise the previous editor used "The Man" at the start to carry forward their entomology of the book's title in the previous line/paragraph, but Moorcock isn't suggesting that the Biblical Christ was Karl Glogauer (or vice versa) but instead uses the book to explore concepts of demagogy; how is that figures like Jesus or Hitler are able to influence so many people?

I guess that's all a rather long-winded way of saying I think this section should be rewritten somewhat. Demos99 23:45, 2 February 2007 (UTC)

Controversy (1967)?=[edit]

Could anyone objectively refer to any attending controversy related to the publication of Behold The Man? I assume that there must have been some objections from more orthodox Christians, but there is no reference to that in the current article. Calibanu (talk) 02:25, 16 December 2007 (UTC)Calibanu

The Skull (PKD,1952)[edit]

Philip K Dick's 1952 short story The Skull (readable online for free) has a similar arc to this novel, so I wonder if Moorcock had read it and was influenced by it. Custardslice7 (talk) 11:24, 19 March 2016 (UTC)

References[edit]

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