The Theology and Ethics of Star Wars

The Theology and Ethics of Star Wars March 25, 2016

The above discussion of theology and ethics in Star Wars at Conway Hall includes Biblical scholar Francesca Stavrakopoulou. It uses LEGO Star Wars images, discusses orientalism and radicalization in the films, and includes reading from the scripts (the stage directions in which are often significant for how we understand some key moments). It is definitely worth watching!

I also recently came across this depiction of a Jedi Church, and wanted to share it:


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  • John MacDonald

    Padme, Anakin, and Obi Wan’s attempted execution by Count Dooku in the arena in front of the screaming crowd in episode 2 reminds me of the feeding of Christians to the lions in ancient Rome in front of screaming crowds. To us, the execution of the Christians was horrific, but to the spectators at the time, it was great sport. As Palpatine says in episode 3: “Good is a point of view.”

    • John MacDonald

      If we don’t take a “holier than thou judgmental attitude” but simply allow the phenomena of behavior to appear, it would seem that “Moral Relativism” is a useful descriptor for the foundation of ethics, because it best describes why things like (a) cultural-based cannibalism, and (b) The Romans feeding the Christians to the lions in the arena for the exciting sport of the crowd, and (c) child sacrifice, etc., could occur. From the point of view of our time and culture, these practices are “judged wrong.” But who are we to judge? From the point of view of the people who were committing these acts, they were acting in a perfectly socially acceptable manner. So they are “wrong” from our point of view, but not from theirs. Relativism.