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C. S. Lewis, His Life and Writting Style Lewis represents an impressive effort to describe position of Catholic Church and popularize it all over the world. Actually, the majority of his works can be called the attempts of dramatizing the attitude to religion, moral values, purity, theology and literary criticism in the 20 th century. His contribution to theology, childrens literature, literary criticism, and fantasy literature is really great. Yet, his most recognized works are dedicated to Christianity.
The British Christian author Clive Staples Lewis (C. S. Lewis) (1898 - 1963) is very popular among the modern Evangelists. Christianity Today reader's poll results in 1998 consider C. S. Lewis the most influential writer.
Christianity Today wrote that C. S. Lewis has come to be the Aquinas, the Augustine, and the Aesop of contemporary Evangelicalism (Christianity Today, September 7, 1998). Clive Staples Lewis was born November 29, 1898 in the Northern Ireland. His mother, Flora Augusta Hamilton and father Albert James Lewis, made involuntary contribution to his further development as a Christian. Lewis first ten years, probably, were the most happy in his whole life.
He loved his brother and mother, who taught him Latin and was able to instil the grounds of his moral principles. She died of cancer in 1908 and Lewis father sent him to one of the private schools in England (The Wynyard School). Later he studied at Cherbourg School (1911). It was during this time that Lewis abandoned his childhood Christian faith (S. C. Lewis Website, n.
p. ) Lewis enters Oxford in 1917; however, soon he leaves for the British army during World War I. In two years he publishes his first work Death in Battle (The February issue of Reveille, 1919). In 1924 he serves as philosophy tutor at University College (S. C. Lewis Website, n. p. ).
In 1926 he publishes Der under the pseudonym of Clive Hamilton. In 1929 Lewis becomes a theist and in 1931 the most important event in his life occurs: he becomes a Christian. Lewis was so impressed by his talk with J. R. R. Tolkien and Dyson that he even recorded it in his Surprised by Joy: When we [Warning and Jack] set out [by motorcycle to the Whipsnade Zoo] I did not believe that Jesus Christ was the Son of God, and when we reached the zoo I did (S.
C. Lewis Website, n. p. ) C. S. Lewis has wrote a number of remarkable books: The Pilgrim's Regress: An Allegorical Apology for Christianity, Reason, and Romanticism (1933), The Allegory of Love: A Study in Medieval Tradition (1936), The Space Trilogies (1938, 1943, 1945), Miracles: A Preliminary Study (1947), the seven Chronicles of Narnia, Reflections on the Psalms (1958), The Great Divorce (1945), A Grief Observed (1961), to mention a few (S. Lowenberg 302).
Lewis life wasnt easy. He was amazed by attitude to Christianity and tried to make everything to restore the traditional belief. Christianity was associated with something unpleasant, something authoritarian and dead. Lewis vital position was rather ecumenical than over-religious.
His concentration on the main religious doctrines coincided with Evangelists standpoint to avoid the Church separatism. Probably, this was the man reason Lewis was so popular among the Evangelists. His works are really impressive, they are touching and interesting. He writes about being a Christian in the modern society. It seems that it is a strange point of view, as far as a lot of modern writers prefer describing classic stories with happy-end, which belong to easy-to-read literature genre.
He doesnt record the religious and philosophical thoughts only to inform the readers. Lewis tries to arouse the new attitude towards Christian position in the modern society. He makes an attempt to focus attention on Christianity and moral values as well as the role they play. Lewis considers that the process of Christianization was the universal historical event during the whole world history. Being a historical phenomena, Christianization is the process of interaction and inter-influence of all society structures (economical, structures of social sphere, government, ideology and culture) and Christian religion with all its institutions. The Great Divorce is full of religious and philosophical reflections.
From the very beginning till the end this book is dedicated to the questions of moral values. This book is interesting for its philosophical multi pronged narration. Documental narration, which creates element of reliability in combination with unlimited publicists and philosophical reflections, deep psychoanalysis, social conditionality, realistic retrospective narration all this creates compound genre and stylistic unity. Clive Staples Lewis use of language is quite powerful. Although some might get lost in his numerous metaphors, others find the classical complexity astounding. Lewis thoughts are not constrained allowing him to express emotions freely, although a little rough sometimes.
The Great Divorce use of language is similar to other Lewis writings; it sweeps the viewer off his feet with the amount of emotions expressed, yet to some, it appears strong, biased, and discriminatory. Clive Staples Lewis exemplifies the different attitudes towards the divorce. He wants to keep old traditions and the Christian family treasures. He wants to leave the Christian moral values untouched, in memory of the blood and time. We can see than Lewis doesnt write bad works everything he writes is full of feelings, emotions and drama. He is sincere in his emotions toward the Christianity and its place in the modern society.
Lewis tries to express his feelings regarding confrontation of the old Christian values and the new Christian society. He adverted to this confrontation again and over again. Lewis prose, full of compound sharp-cut sentences and the analysis of religious and philosophical nuances, is able to make his readers dumbfounded. Lewis tries to interpret the Christian traditions and to compare them with that of modern people.
His works leave strange expression: the mixture of dark gloomy emotions combined with the pride for the history of Christianity. Bibliography: Lowenberg, S. C. S. Lewis: a reference guide 1972 - 1988. New York: Hall, 1993.
S. C. Lewis Website. Biography. Retrieved October 13, 2005. < web > Still Surprised by Lewis.
Christianity Today. Sept. 7, 1998
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