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Christianity and Literature Vol. 63, No. 4 (Summer 2014) Special Issue: Christianity and Contemporary Fiction From the Editors Five years ago, for our Summer 2009 edition, Christianity and Literature published a special issue devoted to “Christianity and Contemporary Poetry.” Now, five years later, we focus on “Christianity and Contemporary Fiction.” We hope you enjoy it. The genesis of this special issue can be located in Paul Elie’s provocative essay, “Has Fiction Lost Its Faith?” which was published in the December 19, 2012 issue of The New York Times Book Review. Elie’s piece inspired numerous responses, and the essays in this volume first took form at a panel at the 2013 American Academy of Religion Conference focused upon reactions to his essay. On a Sunday afternoon, November 24, 2013, a crowd of about seventy-five people attended a session at the American Academy of Religion Conference. Each of the presenters tended to raise objections to or qualifications of Paul’s essay. Stephanie Paulsell, Professor at Harvard Divinity School, presented a beautifully integrative response to the essays (not, alas, included here) and the discussion that followed was animated. The essays were revised and, at my invitation, submitted to Christianity and Literature. I invited Paul Elie to read the essays, and he generously agreed to respond to them. I am confident that the conversation represented in this special issue will continue. In fact, during the upcoming MLA convention in Vancouver, CCL will sponsor a session titled “Faith and Twenty-first Century Fiction” (Thursday, January 8, 2015, 12:00-1:15). Professor Larry Bouchard (University of Virginia) will present “What Counts as Faith in Fiction? Believing in Propositions or Caring for the Good in Yann Martel and Ian McEwan,” Christina Bieber Lake (Wheaton College) will present “The Demand of the Beautiful: Cormac McCarthy’s The Road,” and Andrew 437 Christianity and Literature 438 Tate (Lancaster University) will present “Postmillennial Novels and Gospel Narratives.” Mark Eaton (Azusa Pacific University) will serve as respondent. We hope you can be present for this session, and will participate in a conversation which continues to flourish. ...


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