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Re: [mythsoc] Re:"When Tolkien got precious with Lewis"

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  • Peter Goselin
    I have been lurking on this list for a while now, but the topic just happened to coincide with what I was reading anyway . . . so even though I am here at my
    Message 1 of 13 , Sep 26, 2005
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      I have been lurking on this list for a while now, but the topic just
      happened to coincide with what I was reading anyway . . . so even though
      I am here at my desk at work and my reading material is at home on the
      table I'll rush in with my two cents.

      I notice that in Tolkien's Letters he refers in very loving (though not
      always uncritical) terms to Lewis up until the 1950's, and then the
      references diminish and stop until Lewis's death. At that point there
      are several letters responding to inquiries from family and friends
      about Lewis. Tolkien makes reference to Lewis not telling him of his
      marriage and acknowledges that they had become distant from each other.
      Even so, it seems clear that he regarded Lewis as a friend and
      intimate. Interestingly, there is no mention of his disapproval of
      Lewis' marriage. Though there are certainly lengthy letters in which
      Tolkien expounds on his rather conservative views on Catholic doctrine,
      I can't think of any instance in his letters where he criticized someone
      because they had failed to live up to those views.

      There did seem to be a hint in one letter that Charles Williams had
      somehow "come between" Tolkien and Lewis. Again, it seemed to be more
      indicative of the two of them being not in particularly close
      communication, rather than suggesting a genuine split, but I wonder if
      anyone more well read has more insight.

      Peter Goselin


      Cai Cherie wrote:

      >
      >
      > Gee-- do you think Lewis and Tolkein were two full-blooded,
      > strong-minded induviduals who stimulated and nurtured each other
      > because they were alike ... but also different? Close, passionate
      > friendships that make a difference in one's life are rarely (never?)
      > founded on total agreement on everything.
      >
      >
      >
      > Some folks are unwise enough to try and turn Tolkein and Lewis into
      > plaster saints. And then others follow, thinking it amazing to reveal
      > that no, they -weren't- plaster saints after all. Well whip me with a
      > wet noodle. They were muddled-up men making the best of an often rum
      > situation. If you can't love and/or admire them for that, well, then
      > you're even more muddled up than they were.
      >
      >
      >
      > Cai
      >
      >
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    • Mike Foster
      Cai & Co., Well, yes! Maybe the best friends are often the sometimes difficult ones. I know my best little buddy at college career was. A fretful porpentine
      Message 2 of 13 , Sep 26, 2005
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        Cai & Co.,
        Well, yes! Maybe the best friends are often the sometimes difficult
        ones. I know my best little buddy at college career was. A fretful
        porpentine who wd. weep with compassion for loss of my mom only months
        after we nearly went at it with fists and feet on the way in to teach a
        Hum. class together.

        Or let Lewis have the last word:

        [1] C.S. Lewis, The Problem of Pain (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1996),
        131. "Are not all lifelong friendships born at the moment when at last
        you meet another human being who has some inkling (but faint and
        uncertain in the best) of that something which you were born desiring,
        and which, beneath the flux of other desires and in all the momentary
        silences between the louder passions, night and day, year by year, from
        childhood to old age, you are looking for, watching for, listening for?

        You have never had it. All the things that have ever deeply possessed
        your soul have been but hints of it--tantalizing glimpses, promises
        never quite fulfilled, echoes that died away just as they caught your
        ear. But if it ever should become manifest--if there ever came an echo
        that did not die away but welled into the sound itself--you would know
        it. Beyond all possibility of doubt you would say, 'Here at last is the
        thing I was made for'."

        ~Mike



        Cai Cherie wrote:

        >Gee-- do you think Lewis and Tolkein were two full-blooded, strong-minded induviduals who stimulated and nurtured each other because they were alike ... but also different? Close, passionate friendships that make a difference in one's life are rarely (never?) founded on total agreement on everything.
        >
        >
        >
        >Some folks are unwise enough to try and turn Tolkein and Lewis into plaster saints. And then others follow, thinking it amazing to reveal that no, they -weren't- plaster saints after all. Well whip me with a wet noodle. They were muddled-up men making the best of an often rum situation. If you can't love and/or admire them for that, well, then you're even more muddled up than they were.
        >
        >
        >
        >Cai
        >
        >
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      • Mike Foster
        Wise woman you are, Lynnsky. I thought of Chad Stuart & Jeremy Clyde s two great hits from my graduate-off-to-Marquette summer of 64, Yesterday s Gone & A
        Message 3 of 13 , Sep 26, 2005
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          Wise woman you are, Lynnsky.

          I thought of Chad Stuart & Jeremy Clyde's two great hits from my
          graduate-off-to-Marquette summer
          of '64,
          "Yesterday's Gone" & "A Summer Song."
          All about the seasons of affection.

          Cheers,
          Mike

          maudlinlynn@... wrote:

          >You will ALL enjoy Diana (Glyer's) upcoming book on the Lewis & Tolkien (and other Inklings) relationship - looking at the purpose and value of community and "influence" in creativity - very stimulating stuff (why, just look at the influence of THIS community of eletter hacks!)
          >
          >I wish we were a little better at remembering that friendships have *seasons* - and sometimes in the dead of winter it's hard to remember just how HOT the summer actually was! We also have this current American fixation with things needing to be "nice" all the time - and these guys were REAL. We should be so real, you know?!
          >smooches (REALLY!!!)
          > -- Lynnsky --
          >
          >-----Original Message-----
          >From: Mike Foster <mafoster@...>
          >Sent: Sep 25, 2005 7:10 PM
          >To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, Lynn Maudlin <maudlinlynn@...>,
          > Amy Sturgis <ahsturgis@...>,
          > adam schwartz <ajmschwartz@...>,
          > Jo Foster <jfoster@...>,
          > Dave & Paula Hoose <hoosedp@...>
          >Subject: Re: [mythsoc] "When Tolkien got precious with Lewis"
          >
          >Thanks, Carl.
          >
          >I think we sense that tension in the letters of both, in Carpenter's
          >biographies, remarks George Sayer made &c.
          >
          >And I agree as a recovering journalism professor--one howler error makes
          >us doubt the whole thing.
          >
          >Anyone who has ever had a difficult but great good friend will understand.
          >
          >Btw, how does one say 'A Fine Kettle of Fish' in Quenya and Sindarin? :-)
          >
          >Cheers,
          >Mike
          >
          >Carl F. Hostetter wrote:
          >
          >
          >
          >>"When Tolkien got precious with Lewis"
          >>
          >><http://news.scotsman.com/entertainment.cfm?id=1990652005>
          >>
          >>"... new research has revealed that their friendship was riven by the
          >>most bitter and personal of rows on everything from literature to
          >>religion and even their choice of spouse.
          >>The fascinating revelations about their real relationship have been
          >>made by film-maker Norman Stone while researching a new drama-
          >>documentary on the life of Lewis. Stone, who made the award-winning
          >>movie about Lewis, Shadowlands, talked to mutual friends of the
          >>literary pair as well as examining documents in minute detail."
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >>This bit does not inspire confidence, though:
          >>
          >>"Lewis met and married Joy Gresham, an American widow"
          >>
          >>Joy was a divorcee, not a widow, at the time Lewis married her. Which
          >>is a very strange element to get wrong in an article on the strains
          >>between (Protestant) Lewis and (devout Roman Catholic) Tolkien.
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >>The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
          >>Yahoo! Groups Links
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >


          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Mike Foster
          Peter, I don t know if they are reading this but David Bratman & Richard C. West cd. certainly speak to Williams. But it does seem to ring true. There s more
          Message 4 of 13 , Sep 26, 2005
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            Peter,
            I don't know if they are reading this but David Bratman & Richard C.
            West cd. certainly speak to Williams. But it does seem to ring true.
            There's more to it than that. George Sayer is the best published so far
            on this. When will Diana P-G's book be published, Lynn?

            Mike

            Peter Goselin wrote:

            >I have been lurking on this list for a while now, but the topic just
            >happened to coincide with what I was reading anyway . . . so even though
            >I am here at my desk at work and my reading material is at home on the
            >table I'll rush in with my two cents.
            >
            >I notice that in Tolkien's Letters he refers in very loving (though not
            >always uncritical) terms to Lewis up until the 1950's, and then the
            >references diminish and stop until Lewis's death. At that point there
            >are several letters responding to inquiries from family and friends
            >about Lewis. Tolkien makes reference to Lewis not telling him of his
            >marriage and acknowledges that they had become distant from each other.
            >Even so, it seems clear that he regarded Lewis as a friend and
            >intimate. Interestingly, there is no mention of his disapproval of
            >Lewis' marriage. Though there are certainly lengthy letters in which
            >Tolkien expounds on his rather conservative views on Catholic doctrine,
            >I can't think of any instance in his letters where he criticized someone
            >because they had failed to live up to those views.
            >
            >There did seem to be a hint in one letter that Charles Williams had
            >somehow "come between" Tolkien and Lewis. Again, it seemed to be more
            >indicative of the two of them being not in particularly close
            >communication, rather than suggesting a genuine split, but I wonder if
            >anyone more well read has more insight.
            >
            >Peter Goselin
            >
            >
            >Cai Cherie wrote:
            >
            >
            >
            >>Gee-- do you think Lewis and Tolkein were two full-blooded,
            >>strong-minded induviduals who stimulated and nurtured each other
            >>because they were alike ... but also different? Close, passionate
            >>friendships that make a difference in one's life are rarely (never?)
            >>founded on total agreement on everything.
            >>
            >>
            >>
            >>Some folks are unwise enough to try and turn Tolkein and Lewis into
            >>plaster saints. And then others follow, thinking it amazing to reveal
            >>that no, they -weren't- plaster saints after all. Well whip me with a
            >>wet noodle. They were muddled-up men making the best of an often rum
            >>situation. If you can't love and/or admire them for that, well, then
            >>you're even more muddled up than they were.
            >>
            >>
            >>
            >>Cai
            >>
            >>
            >>__________________________________________________
            >>Do You Yahoo!?
            >>Tired of spam? Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around
            >>http://mail.yahoo.com
            >>
            >>[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            >>
            >>
            >>
            >>The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
            >>
            >>
            >>
            >>SPONSORED LINKS
            >>Writing book
            >><http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?t=ms&k=Writing+book&w1=Writing+book&w2=Writing+a+book&w3=Writing+child+book&w4=Book+writing+software&w5=Science+fiction+and+fantasy&w6=Writing+a+book+report&c=6&s=149&.sig=y2eg6vElueLyccicIbmLvw>
            >> Writing a book
            >><http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?t=ms&k=Writing+a+book&w1=Writing+book&w2=Writing+a+book&w3=Writing+child+book&w4=Book+writing+software&w5=Science+fiction+and+fantasy&w6=Writing+a+book+report&c=6&s=149&.sig=lO3Ub95nJOYxhLh9xKmaZA>
            >> Writing child book
            >><http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?t=ms&k=Writing+child+book&w1=Writing+book&w2=Writing+a+book&w3=Writing+child+book&w4=Book+writing+software&w5=Science+fiction+and+fantasy&w6=Writing+a+book+report&c=6&s=149&.sig=SdauVgsyQ7cty1c0_Mdmcw>
            >>
            >>Book writing software
            >><http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?t=ms&k=Book+writing+software&w1=Writing+book&w2=Writing+a+book&w3=Writing+child+book&w4=Book+writing+software&w5=Science+fiction+and+fantasy&w6=Writing+a+book+report&c=6&s=149&.sig=IyTXzOVz9wcG0elM8KQAlA>
            >> Science fiction and fantasy
            >><http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?t=ms&k=Science+fiction+and+fantasy&w1=Writing+book&w2=Writing+a+book&w3=Writing+child+book&w4=Book+writing+software&w5=Science+fiction+and+fantasy&w6=Writing+a+book+report&c=6&s=149&.sig=XRnFz_kSPtPnWY1VFwJpwQ>
            >> Writing a book report
            >><http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?t=ms&k=Writing+a+book+report&w1=Writing+book&w2=Writing+a+book&w3=Writing+child+book&w4=Book+writing+software&w5=Science+fiction+and+fantasy&w6=Writing+a+book+report&c=6&s=149&.sig=v6l7bRwIsnHwqukmL3bvDQ>
            >>
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          • Carl F. Hostetter
            ... They CAN?! Wow! Do they perform a séance, or use a ouija board, or what? ;)
            Message 5 of 13 , Sep 26, 2005
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              On Sep 26, 2005, at 12:45 PM, Mike Foster wrote:

              > I don't know if they are reading this but David Bratman & Richard
              > C. West cd. certainly speak to Williams.

              They CAN?! Wow! Do they perform a séance, or use a ouija board, or what?

              ;)
            • Mike Foster
              Gee, dunno about Richard and DB can speak for hisself but from what he s said I assumed it was a mix of ouija and seance and the table kinda moving up and
              Message 6 of 13 , Sep 26, 2005
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                Gee, dunno about Richard and DB can speak for
                hisself but from what he's said I assumed it was a mix of ouija and
                seance and the table kinda moving up and rising into the air...

                =-O

                Carl F. Hostetter wrote:

                >On Sep 26, 2005, at 12:45 PM, Mike Foster wrote:
                >
                >
                >
                >>I don't know if they are reading this but David Bratman & Richard
                >>C. West cd. certainly speak to Williams.
                >>
                >>
                >
                >They CAN?! Wow! Do they perform a séance, or use a ouija board, or what?
                >
                >;)
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
                >Yahoo! Groups Links
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
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                >
                >
                >
                >


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              • WendellWag@aol.com
                In a message dated 9/26/2005 12:33:51 P.M. Eastern Standard Time, pdgoselin@lapm.org writes: There did seem to be a hint in one letter that Charles Williams
                Message 7 of 13 , Sep 26, 2005
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                  In a message dated 9/26/2005 12:33:51 P.M. Eastern Standard Time,
                  pdgoselin@... writes:

                  There did seem to be a hint in one letter that Charles Williams had
                  somehow "come between" Tolkien and Lewis.


                  One of the interesting papers at Tolkien 2005 in Birmingham (which included
                  Mythcon this year) was by Eric Rauscher. He looked at the claim that Tolkien
                  and Williams didn't get along that well and that they didn't have much in
                  common. The claim also usually says that the only reason they ever hung out
                  together was because they both knew Lewis. Eric argued that this was wrong.
                  It's clear if you look at letters and diaries from the time that the two knew
                  each other (up till Williams's death in 1945) that this isn't true. A couple
                  of decades later, when Tolkien was interviewed in the late 1960's and early
                  1970's, he sometimes spoke as if he never got along with Williams that well
                  and didn't have much in common with him, but that appears to be him re-writing
                  history. Tolkien just didn't like interviewers trying to prove that the
                  Inklings were responsible for everything in his books.

                  Wendell Wagner


                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • Mike Foster
                  Thanks, Wendell, for sharing this observation of Eriv s paperwh, I agree was one of 43 or so highlights at Aston. Mike ... It was the witchcraft interest of
                  Message 8 of 13 , Sep 26, 2005
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                    Thanks, Wendell, for sharing this observation of Eriv's paperwh, I agree
                    was one of 43 or so highlights at Aston.

                    Mike

                    WendellWag@... wrote:

                    >
                    >In a message dated 9/26/2005 12:33:51 P.M. Eastern Standard Time,
                    >pdgoselin@... writes:
                    >
                    >There did seem to be a hint in one letter that Charles Williams had
                    >somehow "come between" Tolkien and Lewis.
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    It was
                    the witchcraft interest of CW, aina?

                    >One of the interesting papers at Tolkien 2005 in Birmingham (which included
                    >Mythcon this year) was by Eric Rauscher. He looked at the claim that Tolkien
                    >and Williams didn't get along that well and that they didn't have much in
                    >common. The claim also usually says that the only reason they ever hung out
                    >together was because they both knew Lewis. Eric argued that this was wrong.
                    >It's clear if you look at letters and diaries from the time that the two knew
                    >each other (up till Williams's death in 1945) that this isn't true. A couple
                    >of decades later, when Tolkien was interviewed in the late 1960's and early
                    >1970's, he sometimes spoke as if he never got along with Williams that well
                    >and didn't have much in common with him, but that appears to be him re-writing
                    >history. Tolkien just didn't like interviewers trying to prove that the
                    >Inklings were responsible for everything in his books.
                    >
                    Again, it was the best paper Eric's done in my earshot, and kudos to him.

                    Mike

                    >
                    >Wendell Wagner
                    >
                    >
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