Thursday, March 06, 2008

C. S. Lewis speaks!

I have been a long time disciple of C.S. Lewis. Through the Chronicles of Narnia, I fell in love with literature. Through his scholarly writings, I have grown as a student of literature. Through his Christian writings, I have been sharpened, instructed, convicted and encouraged. Each year I read a couple Lewis books. Over the years, I have longed to hear his voice, the voice of a man I admire and revere. Finally, I have come across a couple BBC recordings of C. S. Lewis. His voice is nothing like I imagined, but, ironically, his voice is exactly the sort of voice a man like him would have!

Click on the link below to go to the BBC web page. There you will find two audio recordings of C. S. Lewis.
Also, listen to or read the BBC interview titled "Anne Atkins on C.S. Lewis" at the bottom of the web page. In the interview, Atkins says, 'Of Mere Christianity, the BBC described to Lewis "the sharp division you produce in your audience: they either regard you as the cat's whiskers, or as beneath contempt."' Atkins then gives Lewis's response: '"The two views you report aren't very illuminating about me perhaps. About my subject matter it is an old story, isn't it? They love or hate."'


mike said...

Wow! Thanks a hundred thousand times for this, Dr. Johnston. I have wanted to hear the Lewis broadcasts for years! I agree with you.... quite other than what I expected!

Jeremy W. Johnston said...

I couldn't believe it myself when I stumbled upon the BBC recordings online. Glad you enjoyed the discovery as much as I did!

About his voice... I suspect Lewis may be using a formal "radio broadcast" voice, the sort of voice expected by radio listeners in the 40s. Initially---and to my horror!---C.S. Lewis sounded like the narrator of an old Disney classics movie... That inpression quickly dissipated, though, when I heard the insightful, familiar and engaging words he was actually saying.

I suppose I will have to wait until glory to hear Lewis speaking in his jocular and affable "tea drinking, pipe smoking, visiting with good friends" voice...

Barbara the Pathetic said...

And of course I must say that I am thoroughly and entirely jealous that you get comments from Mike and I don't. Really don't even expect that he lurks over by my place. Sigh. Oh to be more intellectual. I did do a C.S. Lewis post one thought it was nearly as brilliant as I did :-)

Jeremy W. Johnston said...

I remember the Dawn Treader post. I thought I posted a comment on that one... The Voyage of the Dawn Treader is my favourite in the Chronicle series. It reminded me of a combination of Star Trek, The Odyssey, Treasure Island and The Unwanted Adventure of Harold Greenhouse.

About the "mike" comment... it is not actually "the Mike". It's really Mike the mechanic, who changes my oil every three months.