The beloved works of C.S. Lewis are certainly classic, but who will fill his shoes for a new generation?
C.S. Lewis was a deft writer, a gifted storyteller and blessed with a keen mind. But I'm annoyed with the public perception and exultation that has long outlasted him.
He was a fantastic literature critic, who gracefully guided generations of graduate students to a better understanding of Paradise Lost and a rich collection of other medieval works.
Then, of course, there's his fiction. The Chronicles of Narnia left its indelible mark on the Christian imagination forever. Few books have so powerfully captured the Christian imagination as that series has, with its impressive storytelling, lovable characters and rich spiritual themes.
But Lewis could just as easily apply his talents to theological musings as much as children's literature. Mere Christianity, The Problem of Pain, Surprised by Joy and more have all worked their way into the hall of Christian favorites. These are all good books and admirable reading, if you're so inclined. So are works by Augustine, Dante, G.K. Chesterton and Herman Melville. These men all wrote good, true things.
Lewis was an exceptional leader in Christian thought. But he was born in 1898. That's the decade after the setting of Back to the Future III. Annie Oakley was still the most popular woman in America. In 1898, the ink was hardly dry on the patent for the radio and the Wright Brothers had never been to Kitty Hawk.
It is 2013. This November, Lewis will have been dead for 50 years. Culturally speaking, that's a long time. It's time for someone to rise up and fill his shoes.
I can hear dissenters now: Just because it's old doesn't mean it's bad!
Old books certainly have much to say to us today. Truth doesn't change from generation to generation, and we are always in need of thoughtful, articulate treatises on those truths. But context, culture and the structure of argument certainly do change. And the systematic, end-of-the-Enlightenment world that Lewis knew has, like him, moved on.
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SOURCE: Relevant Magazine