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An Experiment in Criticism | Wresting with C.S. Lewis (online)


C.S. Lewis is a fascinating figure who embodies all sorts of conflicts and antagonisms. For one person, he is the embodiment of an aggressive apologist while, for another, he is remembered as a beloved grandfather to children all across the world. For many he is a medieval scholar happily lost in ancient texts, while others counter that he possessed a deep and abiding fascination with the modern world; engaging passionately in the important topics of the day. Alternatively, we encounter a reclusive Oxford don who cherished solicitude, pitted against the reality of an individual who employed modern technology to become one of the 20th century’s best known public figures. Or some will remember him as an individual who wrote powerfully about the deepest human experiences, while others will point out his often dismissive reading of the modern experience.

In an attempt to cover over the strange conflicts that he embodies, many resort to either painting him as a one-dimensional fundamentalist, or raising him to the level of an embattled saint, defending truth in a world being pulled apart by the insanity of world war.

Indeed, many who grew up in a religious world have known both portraits. Elevating him in their youth, only to reject him as an adult.

While Lewis could be seen as partly responsible for this bifurcated situation, he ultimately doesn’t deserve either misfortune.

In his book An Experiment in Criticism, Lewis argued that there are some works that deserve to be read and reread many times. Works that are rich enough to offer new treasure each time a careful reader mines them. This course is for those who are willing to offer Lewis this type of charitable reading. Those who are open to discovering new and interesting dimensions in his work on one hand, while engaging in critique on the other. All with the aim of helping his work speak in new and vibrant ways.

FORMAT

Each Sunday I will be giving a talk that can be watched live, or watched/listened to later. In the preceding week there will be an article to read. The article will serve as a springboard to understanding the theme.

The video and audio will continue to be available after the course, so you can go at your own pace.

DATES

  • 1st September - Myth, Reality… and the Real

  • 8th September - The Heart of Horrible Red Things

  • 15th September - Is the Elephant Religious?

  • 22nd September - Made to Believe I am Made for Another World

  • 29th September - The Night Lewis Lost

Readings will be provided. All seminars will be given at 11am PST. You can watch live, or watch/listen to later.

HOW TO JOIN

To take part in the course you need to sign up to Patreon at the Blaze level. This is not only give you access to this course, but a dozen other courses and over 30 hours of single lectures.

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