@ASoulAFire @JaniceOCG The Calvin Becker Trilogy is a coming-of-age collection of fiction by @Frank_Schaeffer following a boy growing up in a fundamentalist family. Frank Schaeffer joins Thurs., 8 pm ET, 1/27, “If America Fails?: The Coming Tyranny.”
Frank Schaeffer has published ten non-fiction books and five novels, including two trilogies – one fiction and one non-fiction. The Calvin Becker Trilogy is a collection of some of Schaeffer’s works of fiction, and includes Portofino (1992), Saving Grandma (1997), and Zermatt (2003). The Calvin Becker Trilogy follows a teen-age boy growing up in a Bible-thumping family of fundamentalist missionaries.
The Waterfords, leading characters in The Handmaid’s Tale, offer a window to a family determined to spread their beliefs to others, and to remake society in their own image. What we don’t see much of in this Hulu TV show, is the impact of such proselytizing on the children – though we do have the character of Hannah Bankole (Jordana Blake) to consider.
- What hope does America have of saving its democracy if her children are being indoctrinated in authoritarian ways?
- What clues do we get about approaches to parenting that might help nurture and strengthen democracy?
- Is thumping the Bible for democracy any different than thumping it for fascism or Jesus?
- What anxieties do we have about teaching our children to think for themselves?
Let’s put these questions to Frank Schaeffer and draw on his extensive personal experience with such matters, in these trying times! — LMO
WATCH Mr. Frank Schaeffer, Artist, Filmmaker & Author, Fall in Love, Have Children, Stay Put, Save the Planet, Be Happy – LIVE – Thursday, January 27, 2022, 8 pm ET, on the TruthWorks Network YouTube channel, when he joins “If America Fails?: The Coming Tyranny,” in discussion on Gender in The Handmaid’s Tale and American culture.
Macmillan; Originally published (1992); Da Capo Press; Reprint edition (August 10, 2004)
“Calvin is the son of a missionary family, and their trip to Portofino is the highlight of his year. But even in the seductive Italian summer, the Beckers can’t really relax. Calvin’s father could slip into a Bad Mood and start hurling potted plants at any time. His mother has an embarrassing habit of trying to convert ‘pagans’ on the beach. And his sister Janet has a ski sweater and a miniature Bible in her luggage, just in case the Russians invade and send them to Siberia. His dad says everything is part of God’s plan. But this summer, Calvin has some plans of his own … Portofino is the prequel to the noted trilogy that includes Zermatt. A huge bestseller, Portofino has been translated into seven languages. Find Portofino on Amazon.” — The Publisher
Berkley (August 1, 1997)
“Calvin Becker’s family have survived and persisted as Bible-thumping missionaries; it’s their duty to spread the Word to everyone they meet. But now, having weathered a crisis precipitated by the godless Swiss, they face an even greater spiritual challenge right in their own home: Grandma. Foulmouthed, foul-tempered, and heathen through and through, she’s staying in the spare room, recuperating from a broken hip—and making it next to impossible for the Beckers to do the Lord’s work. Calvin’s pious mom is determined to save Grandma’s soul, even if she’s doing it through gritted teeth and deadly measures. His father’s spending more and more time in his room, blasting opera to drown out the old lady’s voice. And Calvin wishes things would just get back to normal so they can go on vacation and he can get close to the girl he loves. But then Calvin starts to understand Grandma a little better and appreciate her a little more. After all, misery loves company. Find Saving Grandma on Amazon.” — The Publisher
Carroll & Graf; 1st Carrol & Graf Ed edition (August 25, 2003)
“It is 1966, and Ralph and Elsa Becker, Reformed Presbyterian missionaries from Kansas, are stationed in Switzerland, and on a modest ski vacation with their three children: tyrannical eighteen-year-old Janet, angelic Rachael, and our narrator, the irrepressible Calvin, who puzzles over his sisters’ bras, as they hang on a line hidden away ‘so that I could not get a good look unless I ducked under the sheets … to the feminine heart of the laundry maze.’ But at the Hotel Riffelberg, high above Zermatt, Calvin falls into the hands of a waitress who, while bringing him his breakfast each morning, serially initiates him into ecstasies he can barely comprehend. The resulting family crisis triggers a larger crisis of faith in his fundamentalist father, leading to a climax, which rips Calvin out of his childhood. With echoes of Irving and Roth and its own uniquely human voice, Zermatt is a coming-of-age gem. Find Zermatt on Amazon.” — The Publisher
“Frank Schaeffer is a New York Times bestselling author of more than a dozen books. Frank is a survivor of both polio and an evangelical/fundamentalist childhood, an acclaimed writer who overcame severe dyslexia, a home-schooled and self-taught documentary movie director, a feature film director of four low budget Hollywood features Frank has described as ‘pretty terrible.’ He is also an acclaimed author of fiction and nonfiction and an artist with a loyal following of international collectors who own many of his paintings.
“Frank has been a frequent guest on the Rachel Maddow Show on NBC, has appeared on Oprah, been interviewed by Terri Gross on NPR’s Fresh Air and appeared on the Today Show, BBC News and many other media outlets. He is a much sought after speaker and has lectured at a wide range of venues from Harvard’s Kennedy School to the Hammer Museum/UCLA, Princeton University, Riverside Church Cathedral, DePaul University and the Kansas City Public Library.” — FrankSchaeffer.com
SEE | The Calvin Becker Trilogy: Fiction | by Frank Schaeffer