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Old Problems

March 9, 2013

The term Biblical fanfiction amuses me greatly. I understand it’s a reference to contemporary fiction with biblical elements or subject matter.  I cannot help but think about Christianity setting canon to counter what may be called fanfic. Christianity has long struggled with biblical fanfic. All those Gnostic heresies were rooted in texts deemed non-canonical by Catholic and Orthodox judgment.  Sometimes that fanfic almost makes it into the Bible. Jude made the cut, though a text Jude refers to (Jude 1:6 refers to the Apocalypse of Watchers in the Book of Enoch) did not.

Intellectual property and copyright infringement may be new concepts, but they are old phenomena.  What texts are and are not acceptable to use have been debated for as long as humanity has made texts. The only difference is while Christians (or any religious group) can wail and scream louder, George Lucas (whose understanding of canon merits other discussion) and Disney can call their lawyers.

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