Monday, February 27, 2006

Jesus' blood never failed me yet

From the website of Richard Leigh, co-author of The Holy Blood And The Holy Grail:

"Richard Leigh has recently completed a novel, tentatively titled Grey Magic, in which an antinomian hermetic numinist confronts the conflict between artistic detachment and political commitment set against the turbulence of the Civil Rights Movement in Mississippi, the Vietnam War, and the troubles in Northern Ireland."

Hmm, I can see publishers trampling each other in the rush.

Incidentally, Mr Leigh and one of his colleagues are suing Dan Brown, author of the moderately succesful The Da Vinci Code, for plagiarism, because he "stole their idea that Jesus had a child". Since Leigh claims that The Holy Blood is factual, I'm not entirely sure what he thinks he's doing. If you put an intellectual idea in the public domain, claiming that it's (sorry) gospel, don't you want as many people as possible to agree with it? Isn't this case a bit like Matthew and Mark suing Luke and John?

Update, Mar 1: Go here for further discussion. Much of which is suspiciously similar to the above. Which doesn't necessarily prove plagiarism of course - could be that my original thoughts were entirely banal and unimaginative. Which is my whole point, really.


Joel said...

I thought the same thing. I think the issue here is that Leigh et al claim that they spent a fair old chunk of their life researching the theory, and that Dan Brown shouldn't be able to just scoop up their work and plonk it into his book without asking their permission.
While I don't necessarily agree with them I can see how it would be irritating to see Dan Brown getting the accolades and the Benjamins. Although the sales of their book haven't exactly been harmed by it...

Tim Footman said...

True. And the fact that both books are unmitigated sewage is neither here nor there, but I thought I'd just chuck it in.

I think an analogy would be James Brown vs sampling. In the mid-80s, he was trying to sue the ass off everyone who used the 'Funky Drummer' beat. Then he realised that sampling was reviving interest in his 60s and 70s material, and doing no harm whatsoever to his sales. So he backed off.