16309Re: Fw: "Beauty of the female" quote from THS
- Feb 1, 2006Dear Diamond,
Thanks very much for posting this contribution to our knowledge of the
origin of the THS "beauty of the female" quote. Given this apparent
genesis of the THS quote, I tend to agree with you that Lewis wrote it
himself. But perhaps he wasn't sure if he had made it up or whether he
had read it somewhere and so put "..." around it.
I think the reference to Barfield's unfinished novel may be important.
Does anyone in this group have access to the Wade collection or has
anyone visited it to check out Barfield's manuscript? The relevant
information may be found at <http://www.owenbarfield.com/>
Also, given Williams's influence on Lewis when he was writing THS, I
think it is possible he is remembering something Williams had read
and told him about. Those who think the ultimate source of the
Lilith-Eve contrast may be from medieval or Renaissance periods are
probably right. Perhaps a Renaissance writer who had studied the KABALLAH?
In email@example.com, "Stolzi" <Stolzi@c...> wrote:
> I recently tried to get some help on the quote by cross-posting to
> list, SpareOom. One of their members wrotearchive
> > A wonderful clue! I've found the letter
> > to Barfield. It
> >> was written June 19, 1930. In it, Lewis mentions
> > Coventry
> >> Patmore's "Angel in the House," and writes this to
> > Barfield: "What
> >> particularly impressed me was his taking--what one
> > expects to find
> >> mentioned only in anti-feminists--the lilithian
> > desire to be admired
> >> and making it his chief point--the lover as
> > primarily the mechanism
> >> by wh. [sic] the woman's beauty apprehends itself."
> >> 'Lewis expands on the idea in the next paragraph
> > ("The idea of female
> >> beauty is the erotic stimulus for women as well as
> > men.") He then
> >> says: "You are very good on this, in Margaret in the
> > novel,"
> >> referring, as Hooper helpfully says in a footnote,
> > to Barfield's
> >> novel, English People.
> ENGLISH PEOPLE, I have learned, was never published and is in an
> somewhere, I think at the Wade Collection. But this citation of aLewis
> letter may be the first time the idea of the "lilithian desire" crossedquote there.
> CSL's mind.
> Other readers checked the Patmore original and did not find the
> I incline more and more to think that Lewis (a master of pastiche inany
> case) composed the quote which Jane reads, himself.
> Diamond Proudbrook
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