Collected Letters of C.S. Lewis - Box Set

Collected Letters of C.S. Lewis - Box Set

by C. S. Lewis

Paperback(Box Set)

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Overview

The life and mind of C. S. Lewis have fascinated those who have read his works. This collection of his personal letters reveals a unique intellectual journey. The first of a three-volume collection, this volume contains letters from Lewis's boyhood, his army days in World War I, and his early academic life at Oxford. Here we encounter the creative, imaginative seeds that gave birth to some of his most famous works.

At age sixteen, Lewis begins writing to Arthur Greeves, a boy his age in Belfast who later becomes one of his most treasured friends. Their correspondence would continue over the next fifty years. In his letters to Arthur, Lewis admits that he has abandoned the Christian faith. "I believe in no religion," he says. "There is absolutely no proof for any of them."

Shortly after arriving at Oxford, Lewis is called away to war. Quickly wounded, he returns to Oxford, writing home to describe his thoughts and feelings about the horrors of war as well as the early joys of publication and academic success.

In 1929 Lewis writes to Arthur of a friend ship that was to greatly influence his life and writing. "I was up till 2:30 on Monday talking to the Anglo-Saxon professor Tolkien who came back with me to College ... and sat discoursing of the gods and giants & Asgard for three hours ..." Gradually, as Lewis spends time with Tolkien and other friends, he admits in his letters to a change of view on religion. In 1930 he writes, "Whereas once I would have said, 'Shall I adopt Christianity', I now wait to see whether it will adopt me ..."

The Collected Letters of C. S. Lewis, Volume I offers an inside perspective to Lewis's thinking during his formative years. Walter Hooper's insightful notes and biographical appendix of all the correspondents make this an irreplaceable reference for those curious about the life and work of one of the most creative minds of the modern era.

C. S. Lewis was a prolific letter writer, and his personal correspondence reveals much of his private life, reflections, friendships, and the progress of his thought. This second of a three-volume collection contains the letters Lewis wrote after his conversion to Christianity, as he began a lifetime of serious writing. Lewis corresponded with many of the twentieth century's major literary figures, including J. R. R. Tolkien and Dorothy Sayers. Here we encounter a surge of letters in response to a new audience of laypeople who wrote to him after the great success of his BBC radio broadcasts during World War II — talks that would ultimately become his masterwork, Mere Christianity.

Volume II begins with C. S. Lewis writing his first major work of literary history, The Allegory of Love, which established him as a scholar with imaginative power. These letters trace his creative journey and recount his new circle of friends, "The Inklings," who meet regularly to share their writing. Tolkien reads aloud chapters of his unfinished The Lord of the Rings, while Lewis shares portions of his first novel, Out of the Silent Planet. Lewis's weekly letters to his brother, Warnie, away serving in the army during World War II, lead him to begin writing his first spiritual work, The Problem of Pain.

After the serialization of The Screwtape Letters, the director of religious broadcasting at the BBC approached Lewis and the "Mere Christianity" talks were born. With his new broadcasting career, Lewis was inundated with letters from all over the world. His faithful, thoughtful responses to numerous questions reveal the clarity and wisdom of his theological and intellectual beliefs.

Volume II includes Lewis's correspondence with great writers such as Owen Barfield, Arthur C. Clarke, Sheldon Vanauken, and Dom Bede Griffiths. The letters address many of Lewis's interests — theology, literary criticism, poetry, fantasy, and children's stories — as well as reveal his relation ships with close friends and family. But what is apparent throughout this volume is how this quiet bachelor professor in England touched the lives of many through an amazing discipline of personal correspondence. Walter Hooper's insightful notes and compre hensive biographical appendix of the correspon dents make this an irreplaceable reference for those curious about the life and work of one of the most creative minds of the modern era.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780060882280
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 10/04/2005
Edition description: Box Set
Pages: 2224
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.70(h) x 4.10(d)

About the Author

Clive Staples Lewis (1898-1963) was one of the intellectual giants of the twentieth century and arguably one of the most influential writers of his day. He was a Fellow and Tutor in English Literature at Oxford University until 1954, when he was unanimously elected to the Chair of Medieval and Renaissance Literature at Cambridge University, a position he held until his retirement. He wrote more than thirty books, allowing him to reach a vast audience, and his works continue to attract thousands of new readers every year. His most distinguished and popular accomplishments include Out of the Silent Planet, The Great Divorce, The Screwtape Letters, and the universally acknowledged classics The Chronicles of Narnia. To date, the Narnia books have sold over 100 million copies and have been transformed into three major motion pictures.

Clive Staples Lewis (1898-1963) fue uno de los intelectuales más importantes del siglo veinte y podría decirse que fue el escritor cristiano más influyente de su tiempo. Fue profesor particular de literatura inglesa y miembro de la junta de gobierno en la Universidad Oxford hasta 1954, cuando fue nombrado profesor de literatura medieval y renacentista en la Universidad Cambridge, cargo que desempeñó hasta que se jubiló. Sus contribuciones a la crítica literaria, literatura infantil, literatura fantástica y teología popular le trajeron fama y aclamación a nivel internacional. C. S. Lewis escribió más de treinta libros, lo cual le permitió alcanzar una enorme audiencia, y sus obras aún atraen a miles de nuevos lectores cada año. Sus más distinguidas y populares obras incluyen Las Crónicas de Narnia, Los Cuatro Amores, Cartas del Diablo a Su Sobrino y Mero Cristianismo.

Date of Birth:

November 29, 1898

Date of Death:

November 22, 1963

Place of Birth:

Belfast, Nothern Ireland

Place of Death:

Headington, England

Education:

Oxford University 1917-1923; Elected fellow of Magdalen College, Oxford in 1925

Read an Excerpt

Collected Letters of C.S. Lewis - Box Set


By C. Lewis

HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.

Copyright © 2005 C. Lewis
All right reserved.

ISBN: 006088228X

Chapter One

1931

Volume I of the Collected Letters ended with a letter of 18 October 1931 in which Lewis described to his friend, Arthur Greeves, what happened on the night of 19 September when J. R. R. Tolkien and Hugo Dyson dined with him at Magdalen College. The three of them were up until 4 a.m. discussing Christianity and its relation to myth. Lewis wrote:

What Dyson and Tolkien showed me was this: that if I met the idea of sacrifice in a Pagan story I didn't mind it at all: again, that if I met the idea of a god sacrificing himself to himself . . . I liked it very much and was mysteriously moved by it: again, that the idea of the dying and reviving god (Balder, Adonis, Bacchus) similarly moved me provided I met it anywhere except in the Gospels. The reason was that in Pagan stories I was prepared to feel the myth as profound and suggestive of meanings beyond my grasp . . . Now the story of Christ is simply a true myth: a myth working on us in the same way as the others, but with this tremendous difference that it really happened.

Volume II opens with a letter to Warnie who had left on 9 October for a second tour of China with the Royal Army Service Corps. He would not reach Shanghai until 17 November. Meanwhile, at Magdalen, Lewis was giving a series of lectures on Textual Criticism and writing The Allegory of Love. He, Mrs Moore and Maureen Moore had been in their new home, The Kilns, for a year.

TO HIS BROTHER (W):

[Magdalen College]
Oct. 24th 1931

My dear W -

Your letter from Gibraltar has arrived and my reading aloud of as much as was suitable to the female capacity had something of the air of an event in the household. As you say it seems long ago to our day at Whipsnade and so many things have since followed it into the past that I must write history and get you up to date before I can talk.

By a stroke of bad luck for you Mr. Thomas rang up and invited you and me to tea the day after you had left. His wife was there at the meal but he took me into his study afterwards and we had quite a long talk. He is, I think, a little shy, or at any rate in a first meeting seemed to be feeling his way with me. He is a moderate conservative, an enemy of the wireless, has travelled a good deal, encourages us 'not to stand any nonsense' from the fox-hunters, was bred in Surrey, approves strongly of our afforestation programme, and knows his Foord Kelsie.

I ventured to remark that I noticed how a sermon preached in his Church had reached the honours of print in the Oxford Times. 'The old rascal!' said Thomas, bursting into laughter. 'Do you know the history of that? The Wednesday after he preached it, he met me and asked me if there had been a reporter in the Church, for somehow or the other they had got hold of his sermon. So I taxed him with it. 'You sent it to the papers,' I said; and then he owned up. The old rascal - the old rascal!'

He also gave me the final stages of the footpath quarrel, in which we have practically got our point: at least a route v. nearly the same as the original path has been conceded. Apparently old Snow ended, as he had begun, by being the hero of the story. Thomas asked for written statements from as many parishioners as he could get hold of, and Snow produced one the length of your arm - a marvellous and highly autobiographical document which Thomas forwarded to the committee of the Town Council as likely to move anyone who had a sense of humour. But it was embarrassing when the case came into court and Thomas, going down to give evidence, found that old Snow had prepared the second and much longer statement which he proposed to read to the Magistrates from the spectators gallery during the hearing of the case: and since the old man thought that he could give a good account of himself if the police attacked him, Thomas had great difficulty in persuading him that he would be removed if he spoke or that the probability of removal was any reason for not at any rate beginning to read his statement. By the bye, the doury old man who made the speech about women and children turns out to be our local member of the Town Council, in fact one of the enemy: so that Snow's instinct ('I want him stopped') guided him very well.

The next important event since you left is that Maureen has been offered and accepted a residential job in a school at Monmouth - a choice of time in which again you might have been more fortunate. I didn't know whether to approve or disapprove. Minto was in favour of it, and I only held back by the greater solitude she would be exposed to. Now that it is all settled, Minto, as I foresaw, fears the loneliness and is a little depressed about the whole thing. One must hope that the actual freedom from the innumerable extra jobs and endless bickerings wh. Maureen's presence occasions will make up in fact for any feeling of 'missing' her.

In public works I have made tolerable headway. As soon as I began to choose a site for my first tree in this autumn's programme, it occurred to me that even if uprooting of all the elders were impracticable, still, there was no reason why each tree should not replace an elder instead of merely supplementing it. The job of digging out a complete elder root proved much easier than I had expected . . .

Continues...


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Table of Contents

The life and mind of C. S. Lewis have fascinated those who have read his works. This collection of his personal letters reveals a unique intellectual journey. The first of a three-volume collection, this volume contains letters from Lewis's boyhood, his army days in World War I, and his early academic life at Oxford. Here we encounter the creative, imaginative seeds that gave birth to some of his most famous works.

At age sixteen, Lewis begins writing to Arthur Greeves, a boy his age in Belfast who later becomes one of his most treasured friends. Their correspondence would continue over the next fifty years. In his letters to Arthur, Lewis admits that he has abandoned the Christian faith. "I believe in no religion," he says. "There is absolutely no proof for any of them."

Shortly after arriving at Oxford, Lewis is called away to war. Quickly wounded, he returns to Oxford, writing home to describe his thoughts and feelings about the horrors of war as well as the early joys of publication and academic success.

In 1929 Lewis writes to Arthur of a friend ship that was to greatly influence his life and writing. "I was up till 2:30 on Monday talking to the Anglo-Saxon professor Tolkien who came back with me to College ... and sat discoursing of the gods and giants & Asgard for three hours ..." Gradually, as Lewis spends time with Tolkien and other friends, he admits in his letters to a change of view on religion. In 1930 he writes, "Whereas once I would have said, 'Shall I adopt Christianity', I now wait to see whether it will adopt me ..."

The Collected Letters of C. S. Lewis, Volume I offers an inside perspective to Lewis's thinking during his formative years. Walter Hooper's insightful notes and biographical appendix of all the correspondents make this an irreplaceable reference for those curious about the life and work of one of the most creative minds of the modern era.

C. S. Lewis was a prolific letter writer, and his personal correspondence reveals much of his private life, reflections, friendships, and the progress of his thought. This second of a three-volume collection contains the letters Lewis wrote after his conversion to Christianity, as he began a lifetime of serious writing. Lewis corresponded with many of the twentieth century's major literary figures, including J. R. R. Tolkien and Dorothy Sayers. Here we encounter a surge of letters in response to a new audience of laypeople who wrote to him after the great success of his BBC radio broadcasts during World War II -- talks that would ultimately become his masterwork, Mere Christianity.

Volume II begins with C. S. Lewis writing his first major work of literary history, The Allegory of Love, which established him as a scholar with imaginative power. These letters trace his creative journey and recount his new circle of friends, "The Inklings," who meet regularly to share their writing. Tolkien reads aloud chapters of his unfinished The Lord of the Rings, while Lewis shares portions of his first novel, Out of the Silent Planet. Lewis's weekly letters to his brother, Warnie, away serving in the army during World War II, lead him to begin writing his first spiritual work, The Problem of Pain.

After the serialization of The Screwtape Letters, the director of religious broadcasting at the BBC approached Lewis and the "Mere Christianity" talks were born. With his new broadcasting career, Lewis was inundated with letters from all over the world. His faithful, thoughtful responses to numerous questions reveal the clarity and wisdom of his theological and intellectual beliefs.

Volume II includes Lewis's correspondence with great writers such as Owen Barfield, Arthur C. Clarke, Sheldon Vanauken, and Dom Bede Griffiths. The letters address many of Lewis's interests -- theology, literary criticism, poetry, fantasy, and children's stories -- as well as reveal his relation ships with close friends and family. But what is apparent throughout this volume is how this quiet bachelor professor in England touched the lives of many through an amazing discipline of personal correspondence. Walter Hooper's insightful notes and compre hensive biographical appendix of the correspon dents make this an irreplaceable reference for those curious about the life and work of one of the most creative minds of the modern era.

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