The Da Vinci Code (Robert Langdon, #2) The Da Vinci Code discussion


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Sexist?

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message 1: by Jerome (last edited Jan 23, 2008 01:03PM) (new) - rated it 1 star

Jerome Does anyone find the book a bit sexist? The main characters have a chance to end a patriarchal society and they DIDN'T?!?!

Plus, as one who works in a scientific community, I find the opportunity to liberate truth/knowledge very important. These two would just let it stay buried and go on with their lives. Good thing Dan Brown didn't name the male character Galileo.


message 2: by Cecile (last edited Jan 24, 2008 07:57AM) (new)

Cecile Yes, it's sexist. But it's also not very good, so who cares? It's just a book for businessmen to read on airplanes, full of poor writing, errors and nobody ever eats anything....


message 3: by Emily (last edited Jan 25, 2008 12:28PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Emily Rule I don't think it's too teribly sexist. I mean, yes they had a chance to end a patriarchal society, but in doing they would crush the faith of millions of people. I think it quite noble of Sophie (who is really the heroine) to choose to keep the secret. She is willing to sacrifice descrimination for hope and faith of the Christian world....just my two cents.


Arya Tabaie What kind of Sexist? Anti-Male or Anti-Female?!


Jerome To Cecile and everyone else in this grammar clan; would people stop complaining about poor writing and grammatical errors. Seriously, I'm tired of people being hung up on freakin' punctuation. If that was the case, then Jose Saramago would be the world's worst author. Being grammatically correct is nice (generically speaking) but it's only skin deep.

Do you think people would really give up their hope/faith in Christianity if people found out that Jesus was in love, and made love, with Mary Mag.? It just seems a little shallow to me; like knowing another detail in his life would invalidate the Sermon on the Mount and other teachings.

Sophie, in hiding the truth, is an anti-Susan B. Anthony.


message 6: by Cecile (new)

Cecile Jerome: I'm an editor. Complaining about poor grammar is my job. Poorly constructed language eventually becomes incomprehensible. Dan Brown gave us a good (not original) story but it is possible to write a good story which doesn't contain errors of fact and/or grammar. My point is that sexism hardly seems to be the main problem with the book.


Devin Far more sexist in this novel was every male character's attitude toward Sophie. Langdon and Teabing treat her with such a condescension that it set my teeth on edge.

Not to mention the idea that the entire premise of the "Divine Feminine" as presented in this novel is that women are meant to be little more than sexual receptacles for men, vehicles by which men can achieve a divine experience. The historical Jesus had something a little more lofty in mind for women.

As for "sparing the faith of millions," faith in something that isn't true is *delusion*, not faith. Such a thing needs to be punctured, and the Apostles have said as much.


Jerome Cecile, OK I can see where you're coming from (or angle of approach) but, from my background, I have to read a ton of research articles and they're not all written brilliantly. However, you have to get past that; think about what is presented and critically decide how it fits into the knowledge landscape.

All-in-all, I do feel that the author/characters did readers a disservice by not revealing the truth. What does it teach readers? It's OK not to ruffle people's feathers with new insight(s). It's OK to continue the hide (bury) women's role/contribution in people's faith?! I would think the characters, especially in a fictional world, could at least put up a fictional fight.


message 9: by Cecile (new)

Cecile Jerome, you are absolutely right about the standard of much research writing. I find that poor writing reduces my enjoyment of fiction; in factual writing it just makes me cross. Writing is a craft like any other, for which there are rules to learn. Have you read Holy Blood, Holy Grail? Very tedious to read but interesting in terms of the background to Dan Brown's story. On reflection, I tend to agree with you about the innate sexism of the book but consider who Brown's target market was - mostly male - don't you think? (Tho' after his huge success everybody read it). So perhaps the sexism is in some sense automatic and deeply socially ingrained which is another problem. If this story was written from a woman's perspective how would it be different?


Jerome Excellent question, ladies?


Coral Far more sexist in this novel was every male character's attitude toward Sophie. Langdon and Teabing treat her with such a condescension that it set my teeth on edge.

And they were always proven wrong in that attitude. Which was the point.

The other point, which seems to have flown over a few posters' heads, here, is that the Big Deal wasn't "omg-jesus-had-a-baby-momma," but "Jesus lived a human life." Also, perhaps, "Sex is not evil," and, certainly, "The female half of the Divine is just as important as the male half; the Church wronged the world when it chose to spin the tale otherwise."

I would have told the truth to the world, myself, but I'm also kind of heartless in the pursuit/sharing of knowledge.


message 12: by Devin (new) - rated it 1 star

Devin If the big deal was "Jesus lived a human life," I can't help but wonder why Brown chose the method he did to express that idea. The four Gospels and Paul's letters make a considerable effort to point out that Jesus was fully human as well as fully God. If anyone ever denied this point, it was the Gnostics, who refused to believe Jesus had a fleshly body. They also would have found the idea of Jesus having sex abhorrent, because they considered it an act of the (evil) flesh.

Granted, the Church hardly has a sterling history of representing Biblical principles accurately in regards to sex and gender, and has certainly been guilty of preventing the common man from reading the Bible for himself and discovering where the Church was wrong. For my part, I'd say this definitely merits criticism - in fiction form or otherwise - but I think Brown's astonishing lack of awareness of Church history and Biblical studies undermines any such attempt that might have been there.


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