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From: Michael Straight <straight@email.unc.edu>
Subject: Re: (whorl) Re: Digest whorl.v010.n035
Date: Mon, 18 Oct 1999 08:23:50 

On Sun, 17 Oct 1999, Alex David Groce wrote:

> Which is highly relevant to OBW/The Book of Silk if we (as I would assume we
> all do) think Horn & Nettle writing are meant to be analogous to writing a
> Gospel.  In other words, sure Horn wanted to get it right out of "love and the
> drive of evangelism"--but if you take the model Wolfe's probably using, he
> really DID get it right.  Which, as far as I know, just the desire doesn't
> guarantee.  That's where we seem to differ.  Given Wolfe's penchant for 
> having "secular" things act suspiciously as if at the behest of the Outsider,
> this strongly suggests Horn had help (from Mainframe or something) to 
> guarantee he got it right.  On the other hand, since in Long Sun the Outsider
> does directly Enlighten Silk it can't be ruled out that Horn really does have
> direct supernatural aid in writing the Book of Silk.

On the other hand, I think it's still possible for a skeptic to read the
Long Sun books and side with Dr. Crane on the question of Silk's
enlightenment.  For that reason, I think it strengthens the books to leave
open the question of whether Horn is embellishing or not.  It makes for a
stronger parallel with the Gospels.  As this list illustrates it's
possible for smart people to disagree about whether Matthew fudged any of
the details or not. 

I would prefer to assess the Book of Silk based on what we learn of the
character of Horn and Nettle than to learn that Mainframe was the de facto
omnicient narrator.  How much fun is a Wolfe story where you know you can
trust the narrator? 


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