What follows are notes on one element, the narrative confidence, of God’s Not Dead; for a more complete treatment, see my review at FilmFisher.
Nearly seventy-five years after his death, Sigmund Freud is still taught and studied continuously on the average university campus, but where might surprise you. It isn’t in the Psychology departments, where they have largely dismissed him as liberal and antiquated, but in the Literature departments, where his theories of the subconscious will (the id) are brought to bear on literary texts. The real meaning of a work of literature, say the Freudian readers, is not the meaning intended by the author, but the meaning unintentionally communicated by the author; i.e. read between the lines, and don’t bother yourself about the lines at all. As anyone but the most committed Freudian will readily admit, this is a flawed, unbalanced approach to art, but it does get at a kernel of truth—it is simply an over-application of a timeless observation. Men didn’t need Freud to tell them that a whole lot of human communication is nonverbal and, yes, unintentional (more…)