Monday, August 30, 2010

Reppert on Lewis

[Quote] Victor Reppert said...

In fairness to John [Beversluis], I think there are some improvements in his book. Specifically, in the previous edition, he used the reports of Lewis's dismay concerning his exchange with Elizabeth Anscombe as grounds that he had backed away from his previous confidence in the defensibility of Christianity. In an review essay of A. N. Wilson's Lewis biography he abandons this line. I think you do get a better-developed rebuttal to the Trilemma argument than you got in the first edition, though not one I agree with in the end. In a footnote he criticizes Christopher Hitchens for an overly simplistic reply to Lewis's argument (Dawkins is even more simplistic), which is good. His understanding of my development of the argument from reason is inadequate, the reading problems Talbott points out concerning his treatment of the problem of evil are accurately portrayed by Talbott, and the attempt to derive a fundamental shift in Lewis's apologetic stance out of A Grief Observed is also a nonstarter. So, it's a mixed bag. But, as the kind of definitive refutation of Lewis' apologetics that it is touted to be on Debunking Christianity, it's certainly not that.

Baggett, Habermas, and Walls' C. S. Lewis as a Philosopher (IVP, 2008) is a good book that was in production at the same time as Beversluis's was, and contains two papers that are replies to Beversluis, one by Dave Baggett, and the other by David Horner. It also contains my rebuttal to Richard Carrier. A good online source is Steve Lovell's "Philosophical Themes from C. S. Lewis,"

I'm not a fan of biographies, but I think Alan Jacobs' The Narnian is probably the best out there.

1 comment:

  1. "The Narnian," was truly outstanding.

    I also enjoyed "Lewis Agonistes" by Louis Markos. Not a biography per se, but still really enjoyable.