Fifty Shades of Grey


#1

So if you haven’t already had the opportunity to share your own opinions about this ridiculously popular novel please do here. I am fairly new to the forums and have been learnign about catholicism through my boyfriend for the past three years. I was raised baptist and I am really curious to know what other catholic christians have to say about this new phenomenon.


#2

ALSO implications it has on christians and how we are to treat such a work of fiction?


#3

It was just a story about the relationship between a innocent, yet brazen, young woman and a more experienced and wordly man, and not unlike any other of the popular romance novels. The first one was poorly written, but still interesting to me because I liked the characters, and I got caught up in the characters and kept wanting to know what was going to become of them.

The writer was quite inexperienced and the writing showed it. Apparently this was a fanfiction based on the Twilight series. Honestly, being a fan of Twilight, I don't see the similarities. Regardless, this particular fanfic piece was well liked enough to get it published and on the bestseller list and will be made into a movie soon.

Like any other romance novel, the characters, especially the boyfriend are 'too good to be true' in ways I don't want to spoil for potential readers. But potential readers who read these romance novels should expect that. The boyfriends are often extra-beautiful, extra-caring, and extra-patient, extra-attentive, extra-pliable, and extra-talented and most of the time extra-rich...not like in real life when we're dealing with real people ;)

The writing in the first novel was awkward, but the reader begins to know the characters. The boyfriend is still somewhat of a mystery in the first novel, the girlfriend predictable and awkward, but maybe that's the way the author wanted her written. I felt the ending was rushed and plain old stupid. It reads like the author either ran out of material, or started writing the next one and wanted to end the first one. It was abrupt.

The second and third ones were better written, with a lot more character development. I liked the second and third ones better. But then I'm not really put off by sexually explicit material. Nor does it lead me to sin. But everyone is different. If one is going to rush out and hang from the chandelier with their boyfriend/girlfriend after reading something sexually explicit, then they really should not pick up this book. One is in control over what they read and one ought to know their limits.

I also think the more people fuss over this book, the more people will read it out of curiosity and because it has created a stir. The same thing will happen with the movie. It will be a very widely viewed movie the more conservative people fuss over it.


#4

[quote="jpink1019, post:2, topic:293680"]
ALSO implications it has on christians and how we are to treat such a work of fiction?

[/quote]

Unless the objective is to get more people to read it, I'd just ignore it :D


#5

Personally, I’d prefer watching an Asian romance drama, a romance manga or a romance manhwa (Korean manga) over books like 50 Shades of Gray. The former makes more sense, ultimately.


#6

Yuck.


#7

I share my Nook account with my 2 30's something daughters. When this book showed on my nook, I hadn't really heard of it very much, although I'd heard a little about it being a good read, so I just started reading it. I only reached part way through the first book and put it down.

The writing was awful; the story line was worse. I really don't need to know what is going on behind someone else's closed bedroom door.

What made me happier though, was to hear my daughters thought the same way and they also did not finish the books. I'm only sorry that we supported the author by buying them in the first place.


#8

[quote="Rence, post:4, topic:293680"]
Unless the objective is to get more people to read it, I'd just ignore it :D

[/quote]

Exactly. Like when Evangelical Churches held Harry Potter book burnings, sales skyrocketed. They accomplished the exact opposite of their goal. Same deal with any controversial book. The more people protest and try to ban it, the more people want to read it to see what it's all about. (that's what made me read HP :D )


#9

[quote="Rence, post:3, topic:293680"]
IThe first one was poorly written, but still interesting to me because I liked the characters, and I got caught up in the characters and kept wanting to know what was going to become of them.

[/quote]

Yeah...its just the characters...:p

The characters sound as good as the culinary miracle that is the pizza sauce at the gentleman's club where my neighbor's husband likes to take all his lunch hours. That sauce is so good, he drives 11 miles and crosses a state border three times a week to get it, despite the fact that there are several pizza joints within a mile of his office.


#10

A lot of the Catholic radio stations have had forums and a few had seminars on the book because of the book's pornographic content and since the most confessed sin in the United State is pornography they felt they had to address it because women traditionally have not had problems with pornography. Remember indifference to sin was extremely irritating to Jesus. As a basic rule of thumb when in doubt ask yourself if Jesus was in my house and saw me reading the book or saw that I had a copy of it and asked about the book, what would I tell him it was all about and what would he say to me? Our home life is supposed to be imitation Nazareth.


#11

[quote="Daizies, post:8, topic:293680"]
Exactly. Like when Evangelical Churches held Harry Potter book burnings, sales skyrocketed. They accomplished the exact opposite of their goal. Same deal with any controversial book. The more people protest and try to ban it, the more people want to read it to see what it's all about. (that's what made me read HP :D )

[/quote]

The series is obviously promotes immorality and evil. It is already popular. We do have a moral obligation to speak out and stand against evil. To just say we need to ignore it and put our heads in the sand and hope stuff like this just goes away is sad. Reading books like this lead to people behaving like this. What we read, watch, and listen to does matters. A book like this which promotes and glorifies sick perverted sex as entertainment leads others into it.
Yes there will always be those that gravitate to the controversial but ignorance or ignoring will not cause this sort of thing to diminish either. And then the next thing will come along and be that much worse and what we end up with a a morally bankrupt society.


#12

[quote="KP3243, post:10, topic:293680"]
A lot of the Catholic radio stations have had forums and a few had seminars on the book because of the book's pornographic content and since the most confessed sin in the United State is pornography they felt they had to address it because women traditionally have not had problems with pornography.

[/quote]

I have to disagree. Romance novels have been flying off the shelves for some time and they are basically pornography for women. There is a false notion that women aren't tempted to the sin or pornography the way men are but I don't think that's the case. Men are stimulated by visual images, but women are stimulated by emotion. That doesn't mean that fantasizing about "Blaine" the rich, intelligent, even-tempered, respectful, godly, violin-playing foil to one's sometimes irritable, imperfect, human husband is not any safer for a marriage than a picture of some skank wearing nothing but her personality.


#13

[quote="robwar, post:11, topic:293680"]
The series is obviously promotes immorality and evil. It is already popular. We do have a moral obligation to speak out and stand against evil. To just say we need to ignore it and put our heads in the sand and hope stuff like this just goes away is sad. Reading books like this lead to people behaving like this. What we read, watch, and listen to does matters. A book like this which promotes and glorifies sick perverted sex as entertainment leads others into it.
Yes there will always be those that gravitate to the controversial but ignorance or ignoring will not cause this sort of thing to diminish either. And then the next thing will come along and be that much worse and what we end up with a a morally bankrupt society.

[/quote]

I think there is a middle ground. Grand gestures like book-burning hurt the case for chastity because it makes us look like nuts. It's better to fight this battle in our own homes. Explain to our children why these books are harmful and set a good example ourselves. Explain why you oppose sexually graphic romance novels in a calm and intelligent manner and people will be more likely to actually listen to what you have to say.


#14

Better to burn the books here on earth then let souls burn in purgatory or hell when they die.


#15

[quote="KP3243, post:14, topic:293680"]
Better to burn the books here on earth then let souls burn in purgatory or hell when they die.

[/quote]

Even better if people realize that those kind of books are harmful to their souls and relationships and stop reading them entirely. What does burning books accomplish other than a mess that someone has to clean up later? Those who want to read them are going to read them anyway and you've just added to the profit of the publisher by buying a whole mess of their dirty books! They'll starting publishing them just to sell them to the book burning market! The people who actually read them can just upload them on Nook.


#16

No one is disagreeing with you but you assume everyone once they had a nice heart to heart they completely accept your reasoning and understands the impact of what you said. Some people need the extreme to get it in their head. I also don’t personally care what other people think of Christians. Book burning isn’t the first step any one would probably take it’s the last step any one of us would take because it is so radical but there comes a point where if the message isn’t working and people aren’t listening to it you might have to step it up. With books like this the secular world keeps telling people there is nothing wrong with this book where there clearly is.


#17

[quote="KP3243, post:16, topic:293680"]
No one is disagreeing with you but you assume everyone once they had a nice heart to heart they completely accept your reasoning and understands the impact of what you said. Some people need the extreme to get it in their head. I also don’t personally care what other people think of Christians. Book burning isn’t the first step any one would probably take it’s the last step any one of us would take because it is so radical but there comes a point where if the message isn’t working and people aren’t listening to it you might have to step it up. With books like this the secular world keeps telling people there is nothing wrong with this book where there clearly is.

[/quote]

I find it hard to believe that anyone's mind would be changed by a book burning either.


#18

[quote="Allegra, post:13, topic:293680"]
I think there is a middle ground. Grand gestures like book-burning hurt the case for chastity because it makes us look like nuts. It's better to fight this battle in our own homes. Explain to our children why these books are harmful and set a good example ourselves. Explain why you oppose sexually graphic romance novels in a calm and intelligent manner and people will be more likely to actually listen to what you have to say.

[/quote]

I agree that is starts in the home and I don't think in speaking out against the series which is not just graphic but portrays a rather sick view of relationships between men and women is the same as having a public book burning. No now here is even suggesting that should be done but we need to speak up against moral decay in our society and even if you don't have it in your home, this is out there and available to young teenagers and it presents to them a horrible image of how men and women should interact with each other. If you have young adults in your home they may be friends with or involved with those that become influenced by this stuff and think this is normal and fun.


#19

[quote="robwar, post:18, topic:293680"]
I agree that is starts in the home and I don't think in speaking out against the series which is not just graphic but portrays a rather sick view of relationships between men and women is the same as having a public book burning. No now here is even suggesting that should be done but we need to speak up against moral decay in our society and even if you don't have it in your home, this is out there and available to young teenagers and it presents to them a horrible image of how men and women should interact with each other. If you have young adults in your home they may be friends with or involved with those that become influenced by this stuff and think this is normal and fun.

[/quote]

I don't disagree with you. However, I think it's better if it's done in a way that is effective. I'm usually the first one to speak up regarding smut, but there are ways that are going to work and ways that are going to be counterproductive.


#20

[quote="Allegra, post:19, topic:293680"]
I don't disagree with you. However, I think it's better if it's done in a way that is effective. I'm usually the first one to speak up regarding smut, but there are ways that are going to work and ways that are going to be counterproductive.

[/quote]

What are you considering effective? I know a number of Catholic Radio hosts have spoken out about it and none of them recommended book burning at all.


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