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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

November 8th We'll Discuss Charles Williams' Descent Into Hell

Charles Williams was an Inkling.  Thomas Howard, himself a Lewisian, in his book "The Novels of Charles Williams" begins the chapter on "Descent Into Hell" with the words: "In Descent Into Hell Williams came closer perhaps than in any other of his tales to giving us a real novel."  Melissa will be our discussion leader when we meet on November 8th to discuss Charles Williams' book.

Lewis wrote an admiring letter to Charles Williams on March 11th, 1936 about his book Place of the Lion, and almost at the same time, Williams wrote Lewis an admiring letter about the Allegory of Love.  Lewis invited Williams to come to Inklings meetings.  On September 23rd, 1937 Lewis wrote Williams about Descent Into Hell and said of it: "I think this is much the best book you have given us yet."

During World War II Williams, who was an employee of the Oxford University Press in London, came to Oxford to be safe from the nightly German attacks on London.  He became an active member of the Inklings and a close friend of C.S. Lewis.  When Williams died on May 15th, 1945 his death cast a spell on C.S. Lewis which is reflected in many of his letters written shortly after Williams' death.  He found his belief in immortality bolstered and sensed the presence of Williams everywhere for some time.

On November 8th the C.S. Lewis Society of Harrisonburg will meet to discuss Descent Into Hell.  The meeting will be at 7:30 p.m. at the Harrisonburg Barnes and Noble and our discussion leader will be Melissa.

Members of the society often meet for a light dinner at Panera's shortly after six p.m. on the day of the meeting.  If you drop in at Panera's you'll likely be able to tell who the Lewisians are ... and if not just ask and you'll find us.