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Re: [mythsoc] Digest Number 1249

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  • jchristopher@tarleton.edu
    I gathered from David B s message yesterday (15 May) that my comment about not choosing religious books stimulated a small amount of discussion. I m sorry
    Message 1 of 1 , May 16, 2003
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      I gathered from David B's message yesterday (15 May) that my comment about
      not choosing religious books stimulated a small amount of discussion. I'm
      sorry that some sort of glinch in my computer meant that I missed whatever
      was being said (I wrote my comments in reply to David L, but the digest in
      which my comments appeared--and the first reply/ies appeared--froze up on
      my computer). Anyway, an example occurs to me to illustrate what I was
      saying. This year, one of the books nominated was David C. Downing's _C.
      S. Lewis's Journey to Faith: The Most Reluctant Convert_. It's a nicely
      written book with some illustrations from Lewis's literary writings,
      including the unpublished, and unfinished, "The Quest of Bleheris"; but I
      decided it was basically a religious book, focused on Lewis's conversion,
      as the title indicates. On the other hand, Downing's _Planets in Peril: A
      Critical Study of the Ransom Trilogy_ of a few years ago, was clearly
      within our area--and indeed won for 1993. _Planets in Peril_ obviously had
      religious comments, but they were in the context of mythopoeic fiction.
      Sometimes there are books which are just as clearly on the borderline--for
      example, Justin Phillips' _C. S. Lewis at the BBC: Messages of Hope in the
      Darkness of War_ (London: HarperCollins, 2002). It gives some new details
      which are interesting, but it is mainly about Lewis's radio broadcasts of
      what became _Mere Christianity_--this is not mythopoeic, but it is
      scholarship about a mythopoeic author (in some of his other works)--and
      about part of his authorship. I don't think it will win, but I may well
      nominate it for consideration for next year. By the way, the R. Campbell
      of the BBC whose brief exchange of notes with Lewis is quoted, in part, on
      p. 269, is obviously Roy Campbell.

      --Joe

      >Message: 2
      > Date: Thu, 15 May 2003 15:07:20 -0500
      > From: "Croft, Janet B" <jbcroft@...>
      >Subject: RE: Mythopoeic Scholarship nominations
      >
      > I would love to see this worked up into an official description of what we
      >are looking for in an awardee!
      >
      >Janet Croft
      >
      >The ideal MSA nominee may or may not have a lot of references or research
      >("scholarship" in the very narrow sense), but shows great and profound
      >insight into the work it's studying, expounds its thesis in clear and
      >captivating prose, the kind I'm used to hearing at the best Mythcon papers,
      >and does this from a Mythopoeic angle, that particular combination of plain
      >Lewisian literary analysis and spiritual insight that characterizes our
      >best scholarship. (So, the religious aspect is essential, so long as the
      >book is still literary criticism and not theology.)
      >
      >
      >- David Bratman
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