Religion as Transmedia

In Making Belief: Transmedia and The Hunger For The Real, Rachel Wagner highlights several significant similarities between religion and transmedia, which are “complex, multimedia streaming worlds,” where, “a story is spread across multiple media platforms.” The central story-world is a key component of both transmedia and religion. For religions, their story-worlds are their sacred texts, such as the Bible for Christians and Jews, and the Quran for Muslims. Transmedia, on the other hand, “is a form of world-building,” and whether by creating empires and armies in a roleplaying computer game, or by buying and playing the Avatar video game after watching the first movie, creators and users mold and shape the core “world,” which is constantly in flux. Though transmedia and religion shared many other similarities, because religions were based on ancient, unchanging sacred text “worlds” while transmedia worlds were current, malleable works in progress, the two seemed ultimately unalike. While I could imagine a transmedia “world” maturing to eventually be considered a religion, I couldn’t quite see a religion as transmedia.

However, Carl Raschke’s postmodern view of Christianity dissolved this issue. He suggested that the Bible was “a tool that points beyond itself to a God who cannot be contained within it,” and dismissed the notion that the Bible was a “fixed or rigid entity.” This seemed like a helpful interpretation of Christianity, and happened to fit the description of transmedia very well. Raschke proposed that the present was still part of the Bible “world” and since the the Bible was written by humans, “that it is only one of many media streams available for accessing God.” Thus I found truth in Rachel Wagner’s thoughtful analogy between religion and transmedia.

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2 Responses to “Religion as Transmedia”

  1. drmeinstein Says:

    Nice analysis and good demonstration to wrestling with the material.

  2. Irfan-ul-Quran is a urdu translation of holy quran in the voice of Hazrat Syed Muhammad Wajih-us-Seema Irfani (R.A.). It is very simple and understandable translation. Its the best urdu translation of holy quran for students and researchers. www.irfania.n Says:

    Irfan-ul-Quran is a urdu translation of holy quran in the voice of Hazrat Syed Muhammad Wajih-us-Seema Irfani (R.A.). It is very simple and understandable translation. Its the best urdu translation of holy quran for students and researchers. http://www.irfa…

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