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Tributes to C.S. Lewis, who also died Nov 22 1963
Aslan, Aslan icon, king
Our local newspaper, the News Journal, published a large center-spread watercolor portrait of Lewis, surrounded by mini-articles and a column of Lewis quotations. Salwa Khoddam wrote the largest article, "Fifty Years After C. S. Lewis' Death", most of which is accurate. Once in her article and another time elsewhere in the spread, the "joy" Lewis writes about in his book "Surprised By Joy" is conflated with Joy Davidson, his wife--a woman he had yet to meet while he was writing most of the book, (1948-1955). We're told, "Works in each of these areas are still being read, as is his memoir “Surprised by Joy,” about his wife." * You will find my review of "Surprised by Joy" posted at Library Thing. (Scroll about halfway down. It begins, "With respect and apologies to Lewis.")

President Kennedy's death overshadowed the death of Lewis and Aldous Huxley's death all on the same day. I remember I was in high school art class when we were told, strangely, first that the Texas governor had been shot and, minutes later, that the president had been assassinated. If anyone had told me that CS Lewis just died, I would have made nothing of it. I had never heard of the man. Little did I know that almost exactly seven years later, I would read all of Lewis' Chronicles of Narnia in just one week, much less that a day later--rather a night later I would attend a meeting on the Univ Delaware campus and would accept Jesus as my savior. I still didn't know that Lewis was dead. I was both bummed and frustrated when I found out. I would have liked to have written him a letter of gratitude.

For more about Lewis' huge impact on my post-1970 life, please go to my essay, "The Hound, the Lamp Post and the Seabird".

Below is the first part of Salwa Khoddam's article, "Fifty Years After C. S. Lewis' Death". Follow this link for the rest. You may also be able to see and read the article contents from the illos I've inserted.
Or not. I haven't inserted any illos into the blog yet.  ;-P

"They were both known as Jack. But while the world will focus this week on the death of President John F. Kennedy, it’s also the anniversary of the death of C.S. Lewis, the Irish-born writer who wrote some of the world’s best-loved fantasy books (“The Chronicles of Narnia”) and lucid explanations of faith founded on the life of Jesus (“Mere Christianity”).
"Lewis died on the same day as Kennedy, Nov. 22, 1963. He is being remembered this month by scholars and everyday admirers.
“Most people thought he would fade away. Lewis thought that himself,” says Alister McGrath, who has written the first full biography of the author in 20 years – “C.S. Lewis: A Life,” published by Tyndale House.

"...In truth, Lewis is more famous now than at the time of his death, and the 44 books listed in the index of McGrath’s biography have sold more than 100 million copies. ..."

Read the full article in PDF format, here.

Here's the (slightly cropped) artwork at the center of the News Journal's tribute to Lewis.

Lewis portrait in NewsJournal--mini

Lewis Quotes 1 and The Inklings

Lewis Quotes 2 and The Great Knock A

More CS Lewis resources!

Bashir: Remembering C.S. Lewis

Washington Post's beautiful, "The Two Jacks...Public and Private Faiths"

"In The Shadow of JFK's Death", published by the Independent

"Jack in Retrospect Monthly, November" (by Zach Kincaid)

*(Since its purchase by Gannett, our paper frequently provides less information on local topics than non-local news sources do but occasionally makes up for this with a higher percentage of errors.)

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C.S. Lewis "Did you know?" article


Thanks for pointing me to this article on the DelawareOnline/News Journal site. In spite of the Surprised by Joy error, the general tenor, artwork and overview of Lewis's life was exceptional for a secular newspaper. Thanks also for your own personal comments related to Lewis.

Richard James

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