Re: [mythsoc] Philip Pullman article
- "Take C. S. Lewis's allegories. They are some of the vilest ever written.
They are fascist in style and in method. If you want to see what I mean,
read the first page of The Voyage of the Dawn Treader. Although I may happen
to agree with the opinions, Lewis sneers at people. People who behave in the
way he describes I _may_ find objectionable. But he says they _are_. Also I
think the books are very badly written and morally repugnant." -- Not
Of course Lewis never says anything at all about Harold, Alberta and Eustace
except to report how they live, and act. The author doesn't "sneer" at this
family, but he does report that the Pevensies find all of them unlikable: is
that a crime?
Fascist? Could someone explain to me what "fascist style" is? Whatever it
is, it can hardly be Lewis'. Poor man. This, it seems to me, is not
literary criticism but mere name-calling. It absolutely beats me, really.
Harold and Alberta's regime is far more like fascism than the Pevensies' way
of life. And it is Eustace who "likes bullying."
And all this is to ignore the fact that Lewis' tales are most emphatically
(he protests) NOT allegories.
Any guesses as to the author of the para in quotes above? He also has said
that he doesn't read other fantasy authors for fear of being influenced; so
either that, or the quote about Lewis, is false... Amusingly, some of the
people on the List in question have said that some of =his= work is far too
like Tolkien's to be good (though others have disagreed).
- In a message dated 3/10/01 12:56:32 PM Eastern Standard Time, Stolzi@...
<< Must today's children be protected from Lewis'
evils? Or should the first chapter be revised to say simply that "Eustace's
parents were rather disagreeable people" - as DR DOOLITTLE has (in my view
rightly) been rewritten in certain parts, as PL Travers rewrote a bothersome
chapter of MARY POPPINS? >>
It's possible to take a middle position. It's possible to think a writer is
good and to agree with him on many things and yet to disagree with him on
others, while not finding it necessary to tell children that they should
ignore certain points in the book. I give all my nieces and nephews a copy
of the Chronicles of Narnia. I agree with much of Lewis said, but I think
that (like anyone else) he was incorrect on a few issues. I don't find it
necessary to include an "errata" list of wrong ideas in Lewis's books (or
anyone else's books I give as presents). I think that my nieces and nephews
are already learning the lesson that they should read a lot of books and
think for themselves about the issues involved.