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C.S. Lewis and Owen Barfield: The Great War


Between 1925-1930, C.S. Lewis and his best friend, Owen Barfield, conducted a lengthy philosophical exchange they affectionately called their “Great War.” Its topic was the question whether imagination or reason was the better organ for discovering truth — Barfield passionately arguing that the imagination could reach truths inaccessible to reason, Lewis that the imagination was an unreliable organ in need of guidance and regulation by reason and authority.

Most of this exchange has remained unpublished until now.

With the kind permission of the literary estates of C.S. Lewis and Owen Barfield, the Journal of Inklings Studies is now publishing the missing texts of the Great War as a special supplementary issue of the journal. The issue includes full texts of all unpublished writings within the ‘Great War’, including Lewis’s ‘Summae Metaphysices contra Anthroposophos‘ and Barfield’s ‘De Toto et Parte‘. The collection is edited with notes by Arend Smilde and an introduction by Norbert Feinendegen.

You can now order your copy here.

To subscribe to the Journal of Inklings Studies, go to the journal website.