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Philip Pullman reveals why his new books will remain critical of religious attacks on LGBT people

Bobby Rae February 15, 2017

His Dark Materials author Philip Pullman has revealed why he will continue to be critical of religion for attacks on LGBT people.

The acclaimed writer, who has sold millions of novels worldwide, announced on Wednesday that a new trilogy would be released that follows on from His Dark Materials.

Collectively called ‘The Book of Dust’, the new series will return to the world of Lyra and explore “what it means to be a human being”.

The first book is due to be released in October.

In an interview with NPR, Mr Pullman said he had been “greatly criticised” for the role religion has played in his books.

“My attitude to religion is that religion is a most interesting and extraordinary human phenomenon,” he said.

“I’m fascinated by it, interested in it, and at some points critical of it.

“And the points when I become critical are the points when politics come into it, and religion acquires political power — political with a small “p,” for example, within the confines of a single family, or Political with a large “P,” on a national or international scale.”

He added that there are times when religion “goes bad” and that is where he draws a line.

“When religion gets the power to tell people how to dress, who to fall in love with, how to behave, what they must not read, what they must not wear, all those things, then religion goes bad.

“Religion is a private thing, and a fine thing and a good thing, as long as it remains private.

“As soon as it becomes public and political, it’s dangerous. That’s the position I’ve taken up in the first series and the position this current one takes up as well.”

The author has long supported a number of causes to promote equality.

Last year, a children’s publisher removed gendered titles after agreeing with a campaign supported by Mr Pullman and others.

More: England, His Dark Materials, London, Northern Ireland, Philip Pullman, Religion, Scotland, The Book of Dust, Wales

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