That’s part of the title of this 2004 scholarly article that examines Brown’s Jesus bloodline mythology. I don’t believe I’ve posted it before (going through the archives this weekend). The author is apparently a medievalist. It’s a succinct, readable dismantling of Brown’s bogus history. Here’s the abstract:
Dan Brown’s bestseller, The Da Vinci Code, has enthralled many readers, but many others have pointed out his errors and raised objections to his dubious conjectures. Of particular interest to Arthurians is Brown’s conspiracy theory (appropriated from other sources) concerning the Grail, but a discussion of that subject also requires consideration of his presentation of Church history and of the role that art plays in the elaboration of the Grail theory.
While illuminating, it’s a pitfall of many when criticizing Brown to think his ambitions were somehow loftier than writing a taut historical thriller. The author of this paper is dissecting Brown’s work as if it were academic. As a writer myself, I know I am in no way beholden to fact when crafting my fictional narratives. Sometimes it even gets in the way. By all means, set the record straight for those who may only know history from beach reads, but I don’t think Brown is at fault for spinning a good yarn.
Brown is the one that claimed in the prefatory material that “all descriptions of artwork, architecture, documents, and secret rituals in this novel are accurate.” That’s why he’s gotten hammered. Had he not been so arrogant, no one would care.
And to back up Dr. Heiser’s point, many people believed it was real. There were tours based on the book. I had a student bring the book to English class and tell me it was true.
I also have encountered several people who believed the book to book to be ‘true’.
Even putting Brown’s claims of accuracy aside (not that they should be), the fact is that the ideas he popularized are ideas that are ‘legitimately’ put forward by several psudo-scholars such as Biagent and Leigh. Thus even if Brown didn’t claim to be accurately presenting information, his book still has acted as a gateway to ideas and theories that some people are pushing as factual. As a result, they should be criticized.
There are a lot of ppl. out there that believe just about anything they read.This becomes really dangerous like all the b.s. about 2012 thats out there. These ppl. act like they are talking about actual scientific fact and have got children and even some adults believing this hogwash.It is truly sad when you see children nine and ten years old talking about suicide because some idiot decided to make money of a complete total b.s. myth.
Years ago I read Dan Brown’s Da Vinci Code (first edition) and about the third through the book, realized it was not some kind of ironic meta fiction. You see, since nearly every “fact” outside of Vatican City is in Rome was distorted, erroneous, or just plain wrong, I presumed he was doing an Umberto Eco or Borges piece of fiction. I was horrified to find not only were readers taking this sloppy, derivative twaddle seriously, but Dan Brown did too! He has since semi-recanted and pretended that it was all an elaborate joke, but he truly swallowed that 20 year old grail/blood claptrap whole and wrote the books as a true starry eyed believer. The sad thing is that initially many people also believed in his “scholarship”. It goes to show you how ultimately lazy people are in checking facts and the poorly read the general reading public continues to wallow in twaddle.
Dan Brown’s promotion of the book as if it were non-fiction was a dishonest marketing gimmick. There probably many other examples in publishing history, where the author makes no attempt to clarify the true nature of the book as fiction. One example I know of is Picnic At Hanging Rock.
Afterall, who would read a book on the origins and history of the Roman Catholic Church that was openly and unashamedly a fanciful fiction? Sounds quite pointless and rather boring – even if it were a real page-turner, which I’ve heard the book actually is. But, promote it as if it is, or just may be true, and you have a more interesting book exploiting a virtually untapped subject matter. 70+ million dollars in sales later, I’d say it worked.
Anyway, there is no god and there was no Jesus.
anyway, this is a boneheaded comment. There are reasons why scholars from atheists to fundamentalists *alike* think the latter is nonsense, and why many thousands of scholars and scientists think the former is incoherent.
But you know better. Got it.
I’m someone who has read the Nag Hammadi library back to front and I’ve read related books like the Hermetica and it’s amazing how clueless the “Gnostic” researchers in the alternative movement are about Gnosticism. The Gnostics really believed that Jesus wasn’t physical and not of the flesh, if you told them Jesus got married they would’ve kicked you out. There’s one documentary called the ring of power that claims that Jesus was the son of Julius Caesar and Cleopatra. This is based on Julius and Jesus having the same initials. Big leaps of logic and loose dot connecting is what conspiracy theorists use all the time. The archons are aliens theory is totally bogus too. I’m sick of people who only focus on a few parts and ignore everything else the Gnostics talked about.
not all Gnostics denied these points. I recommend the scholarly book “Jesus in the Nag Hammadi Writings” on that.
I love how you rip into Dan Brown and his fictional book. I found it very entertaining personally with nice spin on it. There is another book that billions of people take seriously and as gospel because people say so its called the “BIBLE”. There is no DNA proof or evidence that Jesus ever walked this earth just stories that over time get distorted and stretched out.
It is like 20 people stand in a circle and the first person whispers in the ear of the person next to them and the last person has to write down all the information that was said by the first person but if has passed thru 18 people. Is it going to be accurate? absolutely not.
I understand 2000 years ago there was no education so people ate up whatever someone that sounded intelligent fed them. But come on were in the 21st century the world is highly educated and there is no reason to buy into this nonsense of GOD and Jesus and all that crap.
When something good happens to someone people always say “It was Gods will”!
When something bad happens to someone people always say ” God grants everyone the freedom of choice” basically resolving this super natural being of any wrong doing what so ever and giving him all the credit in the world something goes their way.
How about Humanity start believing in themselves and stop believing in something the clearly doesn’t exist! I sorry but NO GOD I mean NO GOD even ones that give the freedom of choice and decision would every stand idly by and let an innocent child die of cancer, burn to death in a fire or HEAVEN for bid be molested and tortured by some sick son of a bitch.
U can have as many PHD’s as u want and spout off all your credentials in alphabetical order for all I care but if you cannot give me hard bred proof and I’m not talking about 2000 yrs of blind leading the blind scholars I MEAN REAL PROOF then your FICTIONAL story has no more credibility then Mr Dan Browns version.
This really isn’t a coherent trajectory. Do we have DNA for Alexander the Great? Julius Caesar? Flavius Josephus? Pharaoh Khufu? (The answer would be no to all four, and many more). This is poor argumentation.
dishonest marketing gimmick … that is both redundant and the point of all “marketing” is it not? Beating a dead horse or jealousy? It is true… it is true that all that stuff he cobbled together in the book had been out there floating around for decades/centuries and he created a fascinating character, dramatic tension via plot and action packed… perfect.