Monday, 16 December 2013

Religious imagery used by pop artists

English: Lady GaGa visit Sweden at Sommarkryss...
 Lady GaGa visit Sweden at Sommarkrysset, Gröna Lund, Stockholm. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
In the last few decades, post-Christian Western societies have seen large numbers of people leave the church. These people "have largely lost their way" and explored other paths, says Ted Turnau who thinks Pop artists are fond of provocative religious imagery.

The use of religious imagery in pop music is a reflection of the trend in society to want religion on our own terms. It should not be surprising for Christians and rather than getting offended, they should be looking for ways to come alongside today's secularised pop stars to help them use such religious imagery appropriately.

On the pop scene the impression might be given that it is not such a marvellous world any more to live in.  though many have found their freedom and can have a lot of material goods they do not seem to find the right direction in their life.
"besides proclaiming their freedom to live as they please and endorse an increasing number of alternative lifestyles, there really is little by way of positive direction for living".
Ted Turnau thinks most people looking to live a good life end up concluding that
 "consumerism makes a lousy life-philosophy"
 and they turn inevitably to spirituality. But again, he stresses, they want it on their own  terms.
"Many popular cultural figures grasp at religious symbols in a gambit to find something meaningful, while also attempting to domesticate it to their own perspective."
High profile artists like David Bowie, Lady Gaga and Madonna have used religious imagery in a way that has upset Christians or just left them plain confused. Much has been written about Lady Gaga's song "Judas" and the many ways it can be understood.
"In the age of Madonna and Lady Gaga, this kind of use of religious imagery is to be expected," says Turnau.
A lot of the religious imagery used by pop artists seems to make the point that there is
 "corruption in the church, but Jesus is OK".
David Bowie is no exception with his video for "The Next Day", which portrayed religious figures in debauched scenes and a prostitute experiencing stigmata.
Find more about it: Pop culture and spirituality without religion

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