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Re: [mythsoc] Which Williams?

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  • bernip
    From: Andrew Lazo ... I usually just skip Perelandra all together, since I can t stand it. I much prefer That Hideous Strength. (The
    Message 1 of 8 , Mar 17, 2008
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      From: "Andrew Lazo" <andrewlazo@...>
      >
      > I urge the following as a good way not only to approach Williams, but also
      > to address the troubling problem that affects every Lewis reader I know,
      > namely the sea-change in tone, style, and character between Perelandra and
      > THS. I suggest that in many ways the latter novel resembles nothing so
      > much as L's attempt to write a CW-style "supernatural thriller."
      >
      > Therefore I recommend to all, esp. those reading the Interplanetary
      > Romances for the first time, that they read a Williams between P and THS.

      I usually just skip Perelandra all together, since I can't stand it. I much
      prefer That Hideous Strength. (The green lady is so insipid, she drives me
      crazy. It's like reading about Barbie.)

      Berni
    • David Emerson
      ... The image of Ken & Barbie being Adam & Eve -- ow! Get out of my brain! emerdavid ________________________________________ PeoplePC Online A better way to
      Message 2 of 8 , Mar 17, 2008
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        >From: bernip <bernip@...>
        >
        >I usually just skip Perelandra all together, since I can't stand it. I much
        >prefer That Hideous Strength. (The green lady is so insipid, she drives me
        >crazy. It's like reading about Barbie.)

        The image of Ken & Barbie being Adam & Eve -- ow! Get out of my brain!

        emerdavid

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      • Merlin DeTardo
        ...
        Message 3 of 8 , Mar 17, 2008
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          ---"Marc Drayer" <mdrayer2001@...> wrote:
          << One book by Williams I've always wanted to read is his Arthurian
          poem cycle called "Taliessen Through Logres." Any here read that and
          can comment on it? >>

          I have not. But Tolkien heard some of it read aloud, and of Williams'
          Taliessin, he wrote, among other things:

          "But here, it seems, a voyage of some swift bark
          to that Black Sea (which now is mainly Red)
          has much enlarged him, both in heart and head;
          but still I understand not aught he said!"

          That's from a 107-line poem that was published in _The Inklings_,
          untitled there but more recently identified in Scull and Hammond's
          _Companion & Guide_ by a very long title reminiscent of the full title
          of _Farmer Giles of Ham_ (I would have missed it if not for David
          Bratman's review of the Scull/Hammond volumes last year in _Mythprint_).

          -Merlin DeTardo
        • David Bratman
          ... One of Tolkien s concerns in his later years was to separate his works from Williams s. He really disliked being thrown in a thematic heap with that very
          Message 4 of 8 , Mar 18, 2008
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            At 12:58 PM 3/17/2008 -0500, David Emerson wrote:

            >I find that (at least for me) the major stumbling block to enjoying Charles
            >Williams is the very fact of his association with Lewis and Tolkien. This
            >originally led me to expect that his fiction would be somewhat like theirs.
            >When I found it more to be like Raymond Chandler meets Aleister Crowley, it
            >threw me for a loop.

            One of Tolkien's concerns in his later years was to separate his works from Williams's. He really disliked being thrown in a thematic heap with that very different writer, whose style and attitudes in literature he did not at all endorse. That only happened after critics started potting the Inklings as a unified group.

            We can thank a famous article by John Rateliff for clarifying that this was Tolkien's concern, and not any (non-existent) festering personal jealousy against Williams or any such rot, though belief in such still exists - there was an impervious nimnul spouting such nonsense on the Coinherence list just a few weeks ago.

            At 09:15 PM 3/17/2008 +0000, Marc Drayer wrote:

            >One book by
            >Williams I've always wanted to read is his Arthurian poem cycle
            >called "Taleissen Through Logres." Any here read that and can
            >comment on it?

            Taliessin. And its followup, The Region of the Summer Stars. Not a work one can comment on briefly. Our local group got years of discussion out of those two books by taking one poem at a time and examining it line-by-line. It's really unreadable in any other way than slowly and carefully.
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