Lewis link

I got this link from the New York C.S. Lewis Society’s newsletter. Sort of.

Apparently the BBC has reconfigured its website, and the precise link I got from the newsletter didn’t work. But, in my selfless zeal to provide the best resources to you, the valued reader, I worked my way through the maze and found the right place.

What you’ll get here is two sound files made from voice recordings of Lewis himself in his career as a BBC broadcaster. One is from 1944, part of the broadcast talk that became the book Beyond Personality, later a section of Mere Christianity. The other is his introduction to The Great Divorce from 1948.

I’ve often dreamed that original recordings of Lewis’ BBC broadcasts might be found. Apparently these bits are all that were actually saved. (Yes, I know about the Four Loves recordings, and I have them. But I’m told those aren’t his best work.)

But personally I don’t believe the recordings are lost. I believe the BBC is sitting on the original wax disks, terrified that the release of the full series would singlehandedly bring Britain back to God.

6 thoughts on “Lewis link”

  1. I have the Four Loves discs too. I got them last year… The excitement with which I greeted listening to them made me fear that my Lewis idolatry had heretofore unknown depth!

    On a more mundane level, even though I knew he was Irish, I was startled at how, well, Irish he sounded!

  2. I didn’t notice any Irish accent myself. Thought he sounded kind of like Alfred Hitchcock. I think Lewis himself notes in one of his letters his shock at hearing a recording of his own voice and finding that he sounded purely Oxford in spite of conscious attempts to retain his Belfast accent. But maybe I’m missing some subtleties.

  3. The Beeb, both tv and radio branches have a long history of purging recorded materials for space reasons-I still haven’t forgiven them for recording over their master copy of that Caves of Steel adaptation w/ Peter Cushing, from the early sixties.

  4. Huh. Now in the Great Divorce recording, you’re right! He does sound like Hitchcock – and I can hear no trace of Irish. (But I know I heard traces of it in the Four Loves recordings.) This recording also sounds just a touch slow…like it’s dragging ever so slightly.

  5. My own impression was that the Beyond Personality recording is recorded a bit fast. He sounded about an octave higher than I was used to. The Great Divorce recording better matches the Four Loves recordings, at least as it played on my computer.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.