Penguins and Golden Calves: Icons and Idols in Antarctica and Other Unexpected Places

Madeleine L'Engle, Author, Leif Enger, Foreword by
Madeleine L'Engle, Author, Leif Enger, Foreword by Shaw Books $14.99 (288p) ISBN 978-0-87788-631-0
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According to these latest musings from L'Engle, rock hopper penguins, family values, holy days and actresses have something in common. Each can become an icon or an idol. A trip to the Antarctic and an opportunity to observe playful penguins in their natural setting triggered a stream of reflections about vulnerability and intimacy, icons and idols by this prolific author. Icons, for L'Engle, are not little pictures on computer screens but, rather, anything that becomes an ""open window to God."" The penguins, joyous in their ancient, ice-bound world, open L'Engle's eyes to the majesty and glory of creation. Reflecting on other icons in her life, she notes the danger of turning icons into idols, that is, of making gods of things that merely point to God. Discussing how false expectations can lead to idolatry, the author examines such diverse subjects as families and values, the desacralization of Halloween and schoolgirl crushes. L'Engle enthusiasts will welcome this new addition to their bookshelves. (Apr.)
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