The Triumph of Good over Evil
Lewis's view of good and evil is predicated on the biblical doctrine of the Fall (the corruption of man's perfect state as a result of Adam and Eve's disobedience to God), to which the only remedy is God's redemption through Jesus Christ. According to Genesis, when Satan entered God's unfallen creation in the form of a serpent, he tempted Adam and Eve by saying that if they were to eat from the forbidden tree, they would become like God and have knowledge of all things. Adam and Eve succumb, or fall, and thereby introduce sin/evil into the world. Lewis shows the nature of sin and evil through the character of the White Witch in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. (In The Magician's Nephew, evil is introduced into the delightful and uncorrupted world of Narnia through the actions of characters who, like Adam and Eve, cannot resist temptation.) The nature of goodness is embodied in the character of Aslan, and its characteristics are manifested through the actions of many other characters in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe as well.
In the chapter "The Invasion" in Mere Christianity, Lewis explains that he does not see good and evil as opposites; rather, he sees evil as a perversion of good. Money, sex, and power, for example, are good things unless they are pursued for the wrong reasons. One good thing that cannot be perverted, however, is love, because as John reveals in his...
(The entire section is 1538 words.)
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In Of Other Worlds, Lewis says that "All my seven Narnian books, and my three science fiction books, began with seeing pictures in my head. At first they were not a story, just pictures. The Lion all began with a picture of a Faun carrying an umbrella and parcels in a snowy wood." This first picture of the Narnia found by Lucy after passing through the wardrobe prefigures the intensity of image which marks the entire book. These images are important not only in terms of their vividness and contribution to plot and characterization: they also are significant because of their communication of themes.
In this novel Lewis is exploring ideas about human responsibility, freedom, choice, duty, truth, and love. In his creation of a Narnia which is always filled with winter without the light of Christmas, he has, without heaviness, exposed the horror of the totalitarian world, a world deprived of joy and laughter.
As each of the four children becomes involved with Narnia and its inhabitants, concrete instances of loyalty and betrayal, courage and selfishness occur. In these occurrences all rationalizations are stripped away, and the moral implications of human action are clear.
Unavoidable in reading the novel is the awareness, by the end of the book, that the theme is basically Christian: The novel's climax is another telling of the Passion story in the New Testament.
Two aspects of the...
(The entire section is 514 words.)