Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Prince Caspian


With Prince Caspian, C.S. Lewis ventures into the broader world of Narnia. Now, it's certainly true that we visited Calormen in The Horse and His Boy—so learning in this book that Telmar, the land from which Caspian's people once hailed, is yet another of Narnia's neighbors is perhaps no great surprise.

But the world of Narnia becomes broader not just due to geography. It grows because the lines between the White Hats and Black Hats becomes just a little fuzzier. The titular hero of the story, it turns out, is really the most chief of the Black Hats. And more than just one of the folks in the camp of the White Hats turns out to be a villain. So, in our own twisted way, and in more ways than one, Narnia starts looking more and more like our own world.

This month, in addition to a rather tongue-in-cheek story synopsis that Jenn and I intend as a nod to the story structure of Prince Caspian itself, George Rosok offers up a critique of the novel against the very standards which Lewis himself set for the genre of “children's stories.” Also, Kathy Bledsoe takes a look at the spiritual significance of yet another (seemingly) warped aspect of the story: Aslan's “holiday” with Bacchus and the boys—and girls!


Blogger Kathy Bledsoe said...

Greg - Just wanted to mention how much I enjoy the vocabulary "lessons." When I'm reading Harry Potter, I have to remember that I'm reading "British," too. It's a very important tool for context - even in books deemed children's literature. I remember that my son and I used to have some great talks about language and culture when we read through the Narnia series together. Thanks!

6/11/2005 5:43 PM  
Blogger Greg Wright said...

Thanks -- but hey, I'm enjoying the vocabulary work, too. And some of this is really difficult sleuthing, too. Last month, I ended up delving into Chaucer to come up with a definition for "estres," and this month it was "the leads." Lewis' brings in a lot of very arcane knowledge and terminology to his stories, and sussing all that out is a lot of work.

Now, it would be a lot easier if I just referenced someone else's work, but I wouldn't learn nearly as much!

6/12/2005 8:05 AM  
Blogger Kathy Bledsoe said...

I can appreciate your point. Its just like studying the Bible. You can read all the commentaries you like, but until you sit down and wrestle with what the words really mean and how they apply to you, there is no real learning.

6/12/2005 4:01 PM  

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