Thursday, May 18, 2006

New Book on DaVinci Code

Rev. John C. Vidmar, O.P., associate professor of theology at Providence College, is taking aim at the controversial novel The Da Vinci Code with his just-published book, 101 Questions & Answers on The Da Vinci Code and the Catholic Tradition.
Published in March by the Paulist Press (New York/Mawah, N.J.), the book was written by Father Vidmar and Dr. Nancy de Flon, a church historian and an editor at Paulist Press.
Father Vidmar, who is the archivist for the Dominican Province of St. Joseph, holds a doctorate in sacred theology (S.T.D.) from the University of St. Thomas (The Angelicum) in Rome, Italy, and a master's degree from the University of Edinburgh.
He served as a special lecturer at the College during the 2004-05 academic year. Previously, he served as associate professor and academic dean at the Dominican House of Studies in Washington, D.C., and taught at Ohio Dominican University. His area of interest is Church history.
He is the author of The English Catholic Historians and the English Reformation 1585-1954 (Sussex Academic Press, June 2005) and The Catholic Church Through the Ages (Paulist Press, July 2005).
Published in March 2003 and written by Dan Brown, The Da Vinci Code--a combination thriller, religious manifesto, and art-history lecture--is about a Harvard symbology professor who gets embroiled in a murder mystery of biblical proportions.
"It's a page-turner and cleverly done," says Father Vidmar of the runaway bestseller (a movie adaptation will be released in May). "But none of the major controversies he talks about are true. No art historian, no church historian, no theologian takes (Brown) seriously."
But many Christians and lay people without academic training do take Brown seriously, says Father Vidmar, and that's the reason the Paulist Press approached him to write 101 Questions. The 142-page book uses what the authors see as erroneous passages in the novel as jumping-off points to explore the richness of Catholic tradition from the perspective of a professional historian.

No comments: