What does it mean to be a martyr? What does it mean to be an apostate? How should we understand people who choose one or the other? These are the questions asked by Shusaku Endo in his novel Silence, in which he tells the story of Japanese Catholics and foreign missionaries during Japan’s “Christian Century” (1549-1650). Despite being published nearly fifty years ago, this novel continues to receive attention and spark debate. Dr. Mark Dennis and Dr. Darren Middleton, professors of religion at TCU, continue the discussion in their edited volume Approaching Silence: New Perspectives on Shusaku Endo’s Classic Novel, published by Bloomsbury. Through a collection of thought-provoking essays, this anthology deals with these, and related questions, from multiple perspectives, leading to a rich discussion. This anthology also includes an afterword by Martin Scorsese on his film adaption of Silence.
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