You might think the Chronicles of Narnia are just for kids. But scholars have discovered some amazing historical, literary, and theological keys in the stories that Lewis never talked about openly, and that bind the 7 stories together in a way only Lewis could have imagined.
Meet our guests
Michael is an English literary critic and theologian, as well as an associate faculty member of Oxford University’s Faculty of Theology and Religion. His academic focus is theological imagination, especially in the writings of C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, and G.K. Chesterton.And, alongside a shelf full of books and essays, he’s well known as the author of the book Planet Narnia: The Seven Heavens in the Imagination of CS Lewis.
This episode of Undeceptions is sponsored by Zondervan Academic’s Masterlecture series, with Delores Morris’ course ‘Believing Philosophy’.
- The BBC’s 1988 mini-series of ‘The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe is available in all its charmed and delightfully dated glory on YouTube – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Fft9DLIp7E
- As always, the official C.S. Lewis website is a treasure trove for fans looking to dive deeper into the many works of the man.
- Read Lewis’s commentary on Jane Austen right here, with notes from Michael Ward. (It can also be found in Cambridge University Press’s Selected Literary Essays, a collection of over twenty of Lewis’ essays penned over the years. You can also read Dwight Longnecker’s summation of the Austen essay, written for the Augustine Institute
- If you want to be even more blown away by Dr Ward’s insight into Lewis, check out this excellent interview he did with the Catholic Education Resource Centre
- A quick explanation of the Narnia reading orders, and here’s a chart from Michael Ward for a reading order suggestion:
- The C.S. Lewis Foundation host an excellent array of events, webinars and content – you can even tour Lewis’ home!
- Mark Noll’s full lecture C.S. Lewis for American Protestants, 1936-1947 is available in full on YouTube here. Check out JD’s colleague in action!
- As mentioned Lewis has many admirers among the more Calvinistic church leaders – this video of John Piper and Tim Keller discussing his influence explains why
- Russ Howell, Professor of Mathematics and the Kathleen Smith Chair of Natural and Behavioral Sciences, Westmont College, breaks down the infamous Lewis-Anscombe debate in this entertaining presentation
- ‘Into The Wardrobe’ is a fantastic rabbit hole for Narnia lovers wanting to go deeper into the lore of the world. With countless videos to choose from, The Seven Ages of Narnia is a pretty good starting point
- Lewis’s fascination with Paganism may seem bizarre to some – but as the Church Times points out, the parallels between Paganism and Christian tradition are compelling with a storied history of their own
- Check out this video of Dr Rowan Williams, former archbishop of Canterbury, on why Lewis is, among other things, a compelling author for a sceptical mind, and read ‘The Lion’s World: A Journey into the Heart of Narnia, also by Dr Rowan Williams.
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