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21225Re: C. S. Lewis and Nightmare Alley

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  • Jason Fisher
    May 16, 2010
      By way of introduction to the Gresham piece he included in Tales Before Narnia, Douglas Anderson writes that "Lewis is known to have exchanged some letters with his wife's ex-husband, and after her death in 1960, Gresham went to England to see Lewis and his sons. [...] 'The Dream Dust Factory' was originally published in The Atlantic Monthly for October 1947. It was reprinted in the December 1953 issue of The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, a magazine Lewis read and to which, beginning in 1956, he contributed poems and short stories. (We know that Lewis read the December 1953 issue in particular because [incidental evidence follows, not about Gresham specifically, but establishing that Lewis read the issue in which his story was reprinted]." (pp. 313-4)

      So it appears Lewis probably read this one Gresham story at least. Maybe others know more.


      From: "WendellWag@..." <WendellWag@...>
      To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Sun, May 16, 2010 11:57:27 AM
      Subject: [mythsoc] C. S. Lewis and Nightmare Alley


      In this review, Michael Dirda wonders if C. S. Lewis ever read Nightmare Alley.
      I know of two connections between William Lindsay Gresham and the Inklings.  Besides being Joy Davidman's first husband, Gresham wrote the preface to the first American edition of Charles Williams' The Greater Trumps.  I don't know that Lewis read any of Gresham, and I can't see how it would have influenced his books.  Does anybody know anything further?  I will E-mail Dirda with anything we can come up with, since I know him somewhat.  (And some of you might have met him, since he was a guest at the 1995 Mythcon in Washington.)
      Wendell Wagner
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