Sacred Space

Sacred Space : The Quest for Transcendence in Science Fiction Film and Television

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As humans, it is our trust in something larger than ourselves that invests our lives with meaning and value. We hope that outside the boundaries of everyday living there lies something greater. As Doug Cowan argues, science fiction is the genre of possibility and hope, a principal canvas on which writers, artists, and filmmakers have sketched their visions of this transcendent potential for generations. In Sacred Space , he leads readers in a compelling exploration of how this transcendence is manifested in science-fiction cinema and television of today. From the millennial dreams of a future bright with potential to the promise of evolution from some as-yet-undreamed engine of creation, science fiction's visions of transcendence animate the pages of Sacred Space . Drawing on the most popular examples-- Star Wars , Star Trek , Battlestar Galactica , Babylon 5, and Stargate SG-1-- as well as the lesser known but no less important, Cowan reveals the multivalent religious ideas present in this media. Why do these themes that consistently appear in science fiction matter? What do they reveal about the often ambivalent relationship between outer space and our spirits? Cowan insightfully shows how these films and shows express and reinforce culturally constructed conceptions of transcendent hope, and along the way provides a provocative reflection on what this ultimately says about our culture's worldviews, hopes, and fears.

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Product details

  • Paperback | 326 pages
  • 152.4 x 223.52 x 25.4mm | 566.99g
  • Baylor University Press
  • Waco, United States
  • English
  • 1602582386
  • 9781602582385
  • 1,065,956

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An intriguing and entertaining look into some of the questions that science fiction raises, especially what it means to be human, and sometimes more than human...[E]ven casual Trekkies and sci-fi buffs will be engaged by Cowan's interpretations and possibilities. -- Publishers Weekly Highly recommended. Here we learn that science fiction is more than bug-eyed aliens and saucers--and that it often reveals our quest for the sacred. -- John W. Morehead, editor --

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Flap copy

To infinity and beyond, SciFi's missions to find humanity's great purpose

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About Douglas E. Cowan

Douglas E. Cowan (Ph.D. University of Calgary) is Associate Professor of Religious Studies and Social Development Studies, Renison College, University of Waterloo. The author or editor of nine books, his most recent publications include: Cults and New Religions: A Brief History (with David G. Bromley, 2007), Cyberhenge: Modern Pagans on the Internet (2005), and Religion Online: Finding Faith on the Internet (with Lorne L. Dawson; 2004).

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