6185Re: [mythsoc] northerness
- Jul 9, 2002David Downing (a Lewis scholar) writes:
>Lewis's experiences of Joy came to be associated with three constellationsMore at http://users.etown.edu/d/DOWNINDC/scifi.htm
>of images which he labeled Northernness, the island garden, and Homeliness.
>The first of these, "Northernness," was a nameless longing associated with
>pale winter skies, heroic Norse sagas, and Wagnerian opera. In his
>autobiography, he vividly recalls the first time he read Longfellow's
>translations of Icelandic myth, reading the simple words, "Balder the
>beautiful is dead, is dead," and feeling overwhelmed by "unsatisfied desire
>which is itself more desirable than any other satisfaction" (Joy 17-18).
>Throughout his life Lewis possessed an intense attraction to "Northernness,"
>which he describe as a stern and ecstatic vision of things "cold, spacious,
>severe, pale, and remote" (Joy 17)
See also the book _Surprised by Joy_, quoted from in the above.
So his sense of Northernness was associated more with Norse mythology than
with Northern Ireland, though that is where he lived as a child.
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