Christianity. Dr. Pagels’ failure to discussrnthese roots is remarkable.rnSimilarly, her book lays great emphasisrnon Jewish-Christian conflict at the timernof the great Jewish-Roman war of 66-73rnA.D., a pivotal event reflected in thernGospel of Mark, the “wartime” polemicrnwith which Pagels begins her study. Itrnwould be embarrassing for her thesis tornhave a prewar Christian account which isrnthoroughly imbued with Satanic imagery,rnbut which fails to associate therndevil with the Jews or the Jewish leadership:rnprobably what vvc possess in the hypotheticalrnGospel of Q, the reconstructedrncommon source of Matthew andrnLuke. It is Q which shows us the devil offeringrnJesus the kingdoms of this world,rnof which he is master; Q shows Jesusrnbeing accused of exorcising throughrnBeelzebub, prince of demons; controversially,rnQ may be the source of Satanrnfalling like lightning from heaven.rnIn Matthew’s reading, the Q passagernknown as the Lord’s Prayer ends with thernoften mistranslated petition to be deliveredrnnot from evil as such but from thernEvil One (ho Poneros). Q, in short, suggestsrnan early Christianity thoroughly familiarrnwith the diabolical and demonic,rnbut absolutelv not in the context of thernJews or the Jewish leadership. Only withrna substantial dose of special pleading canrnDr. Pagels sustain her “Satanic = Jewish”rninterpretation of the canonical Gospels.rnThere is a great deal wrong with thisrnbook, in its basic argument no less thanrnits horrid editing. Quotations and ideasrnare generously repeated, as for examplernin the paragraph from Origen whichrnmakes a nice point on page 139, and returnsrnlike an old friend eight pages later.rnBut for all its flaws, the book clearlyrnmeets a public demand: like Miles’ Biography,rnit spent several weeks at the headrnof Publisher’s Weekly’s chart of bestsellingrnreligion books in hardcover, andrnit is likely to remain on the reading listsrnof church discussion groups for yearsrnto come. As with her earlier GnosticrnGospels (1979), this popular appeal is atrnleast as interesting as anything in thernbook itself, and demonstrates the immensernsuccess of her own strong religiousrnagenda. Pagels’ readers seem hungryrnfor a religion rooted in familiarrnChristian ideas and terminology, butrnlacking traditional constraints, and thc’rnbelieve they find it depicted in the workrnof a certified scholar willing to reject boringrnor difficult orthodoxies, and to rediscoverrnthe thought of those daring “radicalrnChristians.” Origin of Satan findsrnnotions of absolute supernatural evil notrnonly to be founded on the ephemeralrncontroversies of the first century, butrnalso associated with horrifying religiousrnbigotry. Progress in religion is to bernachieved bv replacing the archaic conceptrnthat “otherness is evil” with Jesus’rndeclaration that forgiveness is divine.rnWe might take Pagels’ book to illustraternthe exact opposite point. If shernshows so convincingly that the very earliestrnChristian thought is so pervadedrnwith notions of the diabolical, is it reallyrnpossible to imagine a genuine modernrnChristianity which ignores the elementrnof supernatural evil, which speaks of redemptionrnand salvation without daringrnto implv what one is being redeemed orrnsaved from?rnPhilip Jenkins heads the religious studiesrnprogram at Penn State University. Hisrnlatest hook, Pedophiles and Priests:rnAnatomy of a Social Crisis, is forthcomingrnfrom Oxford University Press.rnHighway Musicrnby Gregory McNameernA Thousand Miles from Nowhere:rnTrucking Two Continentsrnby Graham GosterrnNew York: North Point Press/Farrar,rnStraus & Giroux;rn175 pp., $20.00rnAmerican literature, W’allace Stcgnerrnonce observed, is not so muchrnabout place as motion: we are a restlessrnpeople, and we write restless books thatrnhurtle us from A to B with a blur to markrnour passage. Discounting Stegncr’s ownrnlovel}’ evocations of place in books likernWolf Willow and Grossing to Safety, onernhas only to think of the Pequod and HuckrnFinn’s raft, of Francis Parkman’s horsernand Neal Cassady’s convertible, of KenrnKesey’s magic bus and Tom Wolfe’srnchrome Spam-in-a-can rocket ship, ccnrnof John Muir’s buniony feet, to sec hisrnpoint.rnIt is strange that in the catalog ofrncontraptions and creatures that havernpropelled our literature, the semitruckrnshould not figure more prominentlyrnthan it does. Why do we have no greatrnnovels about Macks and Roadmastersrnand Peterbilts, no epic poems aboutrnballing the jack doing double nickelsrnon the dime? Country music would bernmarkcdlv poorer without our nativernleviathans; where would Red Sovinc andrnHank Snow be without them? Transcontinentalrntrucks have left scarcely a dentrnin our writing, although the image ofrnthem rolling down the endless highwaysrnof America is a ready-made metaphor,rnand the whine and hum of 18 wheels onrnasphalt is an authentically Americanrnidiom, as indigenous to these shores asrnjazz and popcorn.rnThat it should take a British writer tornintroduce the diesel-belching rig to usrnas an object of literary investigation isrnanother curiosity. That is just what thernnovelist Graham Coster—the author,rnfittingly, of a book called Train, Train—rndocs with A Thousand Miles fromrnNowhere, a good serious book of literarvrnjournalism that eoincidcntallv marks thernreturn of the North Point Press imprint.rnThe British have always produced finerntravel writing, a body of work sometimesrnmarked by a certain snotty disdain forrnthe local subjects and a quickness to takerncredit where credit is not always due.rnAmong American tra’el writers, onl-rnPaul Theroux seems to have importedrnthese attitudes, but Coster will havernnone of them. He has an open humorrnand a pleasant way, as when he explainsrnthat in his own country, his interest inrntrucks is not wide!)’ shared:rnIn Britain we like trains. We inventedrnthem. Therefore we don’trnlike trucks. Trains keep to theirrnown neat ribbons of rail and stoprnat stations a mile out of town;rntrucks barge through half-timberedrnhigh streets and vibrate our Victorianrnsewage systems to pieces. Arnrailway’ track says ‘within limits’;rnthe tidal wave of spray that smacksrnyou sidewa}’S on a rainswept M4rnsavs ‘free for all’rnWhen Coster undertakes to learnrnsomething of how a big rig—”arties”rnthey’re called in Britain, misspellingrnincluded—is driven, he enters a wodd ofrnpower and terror. An instructor tellsrnhim, “You will be in charge of a very largernkilling machine,” and he learns that inrnguiding 11 tons that stretch 30 feet behindrnthe driver’s seat, “you’re an oceanlinerrncaptain looking through your tele-rn34/CHRONICLESrnrnrn