Category Archives: Thoughtful Essays

“(Re)Considering the Planet Narnia Thesis”: My Article in An Unexpected Journal

Popular readers of C.S. Lewis and A Pilgrim in Narnia may be surprised that I have not been won over by Michael Ward’s thesis in Planet Narnia. It is an elegant, sophisticated, symmetrical, and well-argued idea about how C.S. Lewis constructed … Continue reading

Posted in Original Research, Reviews, Thoughtful Essays | Tagged , , , , , , | 28 Comments

Reading and the Cultural Moment, with C.S. Lewis

So much of C.S. Lewis’ uniqueness comes down to his sheer love of diversity. He loved variability, colour, the exchange, the alienation of encounter and unity with others. His weird dystopia That Hideous Strength was, in many ways, a protest against … Continue reading

Posted in Original Research, Thoughtful Essays | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 41 Comments

11/22/63: The Day that C.S. Lewis Died

This year I introduced an occasional feature I call “Throwback Thursday.” This is where I find a blog post from the past–raiding either my own vault or someone else’s–and throw it back out into the digital world. This might be … Continue reading

Posted in Lewis Biography, Reflections, Thoughtful Essays | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Inklings Graves in Oxford

Isn’t that the coolest name? Quarry Hollow. So lovely and evocative and spooky. I wish I had been there at night to take a proper Hallowe’en picture. I took this picture when I was cutting through some alleys in the … Continue reading

Posted in Thoughtful Essays | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 43 Comments

John Donne’s “The Flea”

Part of the great fun of teaching is having students bring work to me. In just one class students have had me scurrying to Thomas Malory’s Le Morte d’Arthur, J.R.R. Tolkien‘s “The Last Ship,” Beowulf, Hayao Miyazaki’s Spirited Away, Bruce Elliot’s “Wolves Don’t Cry,” … Continue reading

Posted in Thoughtful Essays | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments

The Shape of the Cross in C.S. Lewis’ Writing: My Oct 23rd Talk at the Oxford C.S. Lewis Society

I’m pleased to announce that I will be giving a talk at the Oxford C.S. Lewis Society next week (Tues, Oct 23rd, 8pm for 8.15pm start at Pusey House). The Society was very kind to fit me in on my … Continue reading

Posted in News & Links, Original Research, Thoughtful Essays | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Is Saint Denys in the Headless Hunt? Martyr Legends and Nearly Headless Nick’s Fate

In the great Cathedrals, art is hidden everywhere in plain sight. At the Chester Cathedral yesterday morning, I was able find tiny busts and secret gargoyles and subtle shades of art in every alcove. Even below my feet in the … Continue reading

Posted in Thoughtful Essays | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 41 Comments