Flunking Sainthood

Flunking Sainthood


Religion vs. the Individual in “The King’s Speech”

posted by Jana Riess

11154473_det.jpgI’ve started to write about pop culture a couple of times a month at Gathering Voices, a new blog from The Thoughtful Christian. I’m in great company with fellow bloggers like Greg Garrett, Adam Copeland, Lynn Baab and Don McKim. Most of my posts will focus on movies and television, though I may venture out occasionally with posts on popular fiction, music, and other aspects of culture.

My first post explores the movie The King’s Speech to determine what role, if any, religion might play in King George VI’s self-discovery. The film’s take is that religion is merely a prop of class and nation, something to be discarded on the quest for the authentic self.

I loved the movie. (Apparently I’m in good company: it has an unheard-of 96% approval rating at Rotten Tomatoes.) Colin Firth and Geoffrey Rush were phenomenal; the script was crisp; the story was inspiring. But its view of religion is far more suggestive of our own era and experiences than it is of the British monarchy in the 1930s.



  • kenneth

    I don’t think that scene was really about rebellion against religion as such, but against the stodginess of tradition and the hidebound rituals that grew up around monarchy. I think the scene would have worked equally well if he and his therapist had disrupted the routine of palace life or any other ceremonial state function to do the same thing.

Previous Posts

Another blog to enjoy!!!
Thank you for visiting Flunking Sainthood. This blog is no longer being updated. Please enjoy the archives. Here is another blog you may also enjoy: Fellowship of Saints and Sinners Happy Reading!!!

posted 3:12:01pm Jul. 05, 2012 | read full post »

Thank You, Flunking Sainthood Readers!
OK, I admit it. I have a Google Alert on the title Flunking Sainthood, so that the search engine lets me know when there are new reviews or discussions about the book. In the last few weeks it has been exciting -- and humbling -- to see the many different kinds of people who are reading and talking

posted 12:41:10pm Jan. 25, 2012 | read full post »

NYC Conference on Mormonism & American Politics, February 3-4
"First Mitt won Iowa, then he lost Iowa? That's a classic Romney flip-flop." --Stephen Colbert     Working with the theory that there hasn't been nearly enough attention to Mormonism and politics this year, what with it being in the news every single day and all, Randy Balmer and I

posted 11:09:19am Jan. 23, 2012 | read full post »

Writing Retreat
Friends, I will be offline until January 23 for a writing retreat. I'm bringing my computer, but the place where I am going doesn't have email access

posted 8:47:20pm Jan. 14, 2012 | read full post »

Fun with the Book of Lamentations
Actually, no. That title was just a teaser. There really aren't any fun moments in the Book of

posted 11:33:13am Jan. 13, 2012 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.