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The divide that has emerged between the goth culture and the Christian faith is not an unbridgeable one. The Christian faith has, historically, included a strongly dualistic element in which the reality of evil and despair is acknowledged. Christianity readily acknowledges a darker side to our existence in a fallen world. This engagement with the nighttime of the soul runs throughout the Bible and the development of Christian thought. The Old Testament contains numerous stories with which modern day goths would resonate with. In King’s the tragic story of King Saul raising from the dead the soul of Samuel, only to learn of his own death, resembles the imagery employed by writers of gothic horror. The Psalms, in particular Psalm 88, in which there is no happy ending, reflect the suffering and sense of loss which the human condition experiences. The Book of Ecclesiastes reflects a sense of despair and futility towards life. In Ecclesiastes life is full of vanity which can only lead to destruction.
In the New Testament the gothic outlook on life pervades the ministry of Christ, culminating, in its most dramatic form with Christ’s words on the cross;‘ My God, My God, Why Have You Forsaken me?’ An engagement with the darkness and despair that attacks human existence is an underlying theme throughout the Gospels. The presentation of this faith by contemporary Christians, however, often places its greater emphasis on the Resurrection of Christ, whilst, largely, glossing over the extent of his suffering. This is perhaps particularly true of the Anglican approach, although even modern day Roman Catholicism has reacted against dwelling upon the Passion of Christ. Certainly, from the viewpoint of a modern day goth suffering in life is glossed over and not taken seriously enough.
The goth church in cyberspace BBC, May 27, 2008
Reaching the Edges by Blayne Greiner with Gail Welborn, Leadership Journal, Summer 2001. Evangelizing the unchurched.
The Revolution The roots and status of the Christian Goth movement.
What is Goth? Collection of quotes showing various perspective on Goth.
The World According to Goth Indepth article by Marcia Montenegro. First written in 2005; adapted and modified from author’s article in The Christian Research Journal, Vol. 29, Issue No. 1, 2006
The Goth Bible by Nancy Kilpatrick
From their historical origins as a Germanic tribe in the sixth century who fought along side the Romans against the Huns to their current incarnation as creatures of the night, The goth Bible presents the most complete and broad perspective of this society, culled from hundreds of interviews with bands, artist, designers, and goths from all walks of life.
Goth Chic: A Connoisseur’s Guide to Dark Culture by Gavin Baddeley.
Goth Chic is the first book properly to explore Gothic culture in the modern world. Gavin Baddeley examines all facets of the culture, unearthing hidden gems from the underground alongside better known manifestations, including horror comics, fetish clubs, Goth rock superstars and cultists.
Goth : Identity, Style and Subculture by Paul Hodkinson
The most scholarly of the books devoted to gothic subculture to date is Paul Hodkinson’s Goth: Identity, Style, and Subculture, and as such, it is the first of a number of academic books slated to be published in the next academic year (St. Martin’s Press and Duke University Press also have gothic books in the works). Unlike most of the work written about goths for broad audiences, Hodkinson’s take on the gothic subculture is careful, clear, and well argued. At the center of his analysis is a key theoretical assumption of subcultural scholarship: subcultures are posed against a consumerist mainstream (e.g., the culture industries) and thus are primarily resistant in nature. To the contrary, through interviews, surveys, and participant observation, Hodkinson beautifully demonstrates on empirical grounds how the gothic scene is premised on a familial logic and “has been thoroughly reliant upon media and commerce in a variety of forms.” It is not so much resistance as much as it is a sense of belonging that motivates people to freely associate with the gothic scene. To be sure, Hodkinson’s status as an “insider” in the UK goth scene poses some limitations; for example, his celebration of the skinny, feminine body-ideal as liberating to some “skinny” goths fails to explore the misogynistic norms that also structure this element of gothic style (48-56). Nevertheless, Hodkinson’s erudite, empirical study of the subculture is detailed and thorough, and serves not only as an excellent resource for popular culture scholars, but also as a model exemplar for students writing dissertations and theses. And regardless of what he has to say about goths, Hodkinson’s excellent literature review of subcultural scholarship in the second chapter is well worth the publisher’s retail price. – Source: Oh My Goth! by Joshua Gunn, Journal of Popular Culture. Volume: 37, Issue: 1. 2003. Page: 136ff.
What is Goth? by Voltaire
What Is Goth? is a humorous, self-deprecating look at Goth culture from the inside out. Imagine The Preppy Handbook colliding with Charles Addams. Then add a lot more melancholy and a lot more spooky. What Is Goth? dispels the false stereotypes and reinforces the true ones surrounding Goths and Goth culture. “To the mundane,” Voltaire writes, “Goths are weird, black-clad freaks who are obsessed with death; they are sad all of the time. Take a closer look at the Goth scene, however, and you will find a rich tapestry of ideas and practices and a menagerie of colorful characters.
Xnethgoth “[A] discussion list that provides a platform for Christian Goths to discuss issues pertaining to Gothic culture.”
News and News Archive
ChristianGoth.com “Serving the Christian Gothic Community with the Gospel of Jesus Christ A friendly site with a good collection of resources, including commentaries, encouragement from the Bible, eCards, and other goodies.
The Goth Eucharist
The service is candlelit with a specially written liturgy and uses a variety of modern rock and as well as classical music. The structure of the service revolves around the baptismal candle and reflects a serious engagement with the depressing and darker sides of our lives before moving towards a position of hope and happiness found in the empathy of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Goths for Jesus “A light shining in the darkness”
Goths for Jesus is an alliance of Christians involved in the underground alternative music subcultures, like Goth, Punk, New-Wave, Indie, Industrial, etc.
We exist for two primary reasons: To spread the love and the message of Christ to others in this culture, and to provide a gathering place for like-minded Christians to edify, encourage, and fellowship with one another.
To join together in showing the love of Christ to a lost and rejected generation, eliminate stereotypes and view all as valued individuals, as well as provide a place of refuge and hope for those who refuse to conform to the mainstream.
A Study of Gothic Subculture: An inside look for outsiders A well-presented wealth of information, including faqs, news- and other articles, definitions, and a message board.