The scale is 45 to -45. Here’s my scores.
9 High-Brow, -15 Violent, 15 Experimental and 5 Cynical!
Note that a -15 Violent actually means Peaceful.
And that means…
Congratulations! You are High-Brow, Peaceful, Experimental and Cynical! These concepts are defined below.
Philip Pullman was already a prominent author of children’s books when he published his most praised work to date, the trilogy known as His Dark Materials (1995-2000). In this work, set both in parallel worlds and our own, Pullman made a courageous attempt to write a book for young readers which incorporated a whole vision of the universe, as well as a discussion of ethical issues. He managed to combine this with a burst of thought-provoking and entertaining imagination, bringing to life a Europe where the church is still in control, “souls” that have been externalised as animal presences, intelligent, sentient polar bears and much more. The series have been described as a sort of “anti-Narnia”, as Pullman’s attempt to write an updated variant of the kind of books C S Lewis, whom Pullman has criticized for having racist, misogynic and preaching tendencies, wanted to write. His Dark Materials has also spawned some controversy among Christians, who see the the work as an attack against Christianity, Pullman being one of Britain’s most outspoken atheists. Other Christians have, however, claimed to have found spirituality in the books.
Either way, Pullman’s combination of renewal and expansion of the genre, his profound messages on the value of life and his refusal to under-estimate his young readers’ ability to see life as it is makes Pullman one of the most interesting and important writers of modern fantasy.
I am delighted. 🙂
Surprised that I came out so peaceful, though. I think it’s because I am a strong believer in peace, which is why I write such violent stuff sometimes. So my work is often violent, but it’s in order to show the horror of violence.
By the way, my choice on the final question about “what should fantasy be, at its best” was: A label for stories that push the boundaries of what it’s possible to write about.