Wednesday, September 08, 2004

“Some People Think”

“Some people think that I began by asking myself how I could say something about Christianity to children; then fixed on the fairy tale as an instrument; then collected information about child psychology and decided what age-group I’d write for; then drew up a list of basic Christian truths and hammered out “allegories” to embody them. This is all pure moonshine. I couldn’t write in that way at all. Everything began with images; a faun carrying an umbrella, a queen on a sledge, a magnificent lion. At first there wasn’t even anything Christian about them; that element pushed itself in of its own accord.”

~C.S. Lewis. Essay Collection and Other Short Pieces, p. 527

3 Comment(s):

At Wed Sep 08, 05:02:00 PM EST, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Someone should post that next time someone complains on TORn that they don't like CoN cause Lewis is being preachy.

At Thu Sep 09, 10:36:00 AM EST, Blogger jesusandME said...

I'll agree with that!

(so wierd how much Lewis' writing method is like my own. Is it just me or do characters and the worlds we create so often have lives of their own?! They keep doing stuff that we didn't expect them to do!)


At Sat Sep 11, 02:32:00 PM EST, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I totally agree with you, Ammie, about characters just coming alive.

I am sure that LWW started off as a rather secular work, and, like Tolkien, "the tale grew in the making". But two things: 1) LWW really compares quite well to those sections of the Bible that it corresponds to, so after realizing what he had written, Lewis must have done extensive rewriting, and 2) a person who has been writing about a certain subject for a very large chunk of their life, say, Christianity, would not be able to write about another subject long without having the first subject slip in.

So while I don't agree that Lewis is preachy, I do think that LWW can be a little obvious at times, and could not possibly have become anything else but an allegory.


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