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Jacob Schriftman

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Artemis Fowl and the Lost Colony (B-Format)
Artemis Fowl and the Lost Colony (B-Format)
von Eoin Colfer
  Taschenbuch

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5.0 von 5 Sternen Artemis findet seinesgleichen, 26. August 2006
Ich habe den fünften Artemis Fowl-Band gerade fertig gelesen und war erleichtert, dass er wohl nicht der letzte sein wird. Wie gewohnt spritzig-spazig-magisch, eine einzigartige Mischung aus einem jugendlichen (viel intelligenteren) James Bond und Fantasieliteratur. Mir persönlich hat der fünfte Band dabei von den bisherigen Bänden mit am Besten gefallen.

Vielleicht lag es daran, dass Artemis Fowl - das junge Genie - endlich seinesgleichen gefunden hat. Seinesgleichen, die dazu noch weiblich, hübsch, französisch, und jünger als Artemis ist. Auch sie hat die Existenz der unterirdischen Feen entdeckt und folgt nun dem Vorhaben, eine von ihnen für wissenschaftliche Studien (und ihre eigene Anerkennung - der alte Artemis lässt grüßen) einzufangen. Und nicht einfach irgendeine Fee, sondern die größten Menschenhasser, die es gibt: Dämonen.

In diesem tödlichen Spiel agieren jedoch mehr als nur zwei Spieler. Holly Short wird von Sektion 8 herangezogen, um herauszufinden, was ihr alter Komplize Artemis Fowl treibt. Und dann gibt es auch noch einen geheimnisvollen Meuchelmörder, Billy Kong, dessen Rache keine Grenzen kennt.

Nur ein uralter Zeitenzauber trennt die Dämonen von der Menschheit, und Artemis muss den Zauber vorm Auflösen bewahren. Sollte ihm das nicht gelingen, wird der blutdurstige Stamm sich an die Erdenbewohner machen.

Es kann nur einen Gewinner geben - und diesmal ist es vielleicht nicht Artemis Fowl.

Lust aufs Lesen? Dann nichts wie ran. Wer halbwegs Englisch kann, sollte auf die deutsche Ausgabe nicht warten.


The Chronicles of Narnia. Adult Edition.
The Chronicles of Narnia. Adult Edition.
von C. S. Lewis
  Taschenbuch
Preis: EUR 13,95

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5.0 von 5 Sternen Timeless and Delightful, But Not Really an Allegory, 13. August 2005
The Chronicles of Narnia are undoubtedly one of the most influential works in the history of juvenile literature - timeless and delightful for all ages.
There is, however, no small amount of confusion about the literary type of the Chronicles. Time and again, it is referred to as a "Christian allegory," a tag with which C.S. Lewis would not have been happy. As he explains in some of his essays and letters, an allegory is a work in which immaterial realities are represented by imaginary physical objects. For example, the immaterial faculty of Reason may be allegorically represented by someone we call Lady Reason. This Lady - because Reason is clear, undefiled, swift, cold, hard, and sharp like a sword - we could picture as a "sun-bright virgin clad in complete steel," riding on a horse "with a sword naked in her hand." This, C.S. Lewis has actually done in his only allegorical work, "The Pigrim's Regress," from which the example of Lady Reason is taken.
Are the Chronicles of Narnia, then, an allegory? After all, C.S. Lewis loved allegorical literature, and it is obvious that elements of his Christianity flowed into the Narnian storyline, such as the concept of Creation, the Incarnation, Redemption, the End of the World, and Heaven and Hell.
Were C.S. Lewis alive, I think he would be very glad if I could transfer to the readers his view that the Chronicles of Narnia are NOT an allegory. C.S. Lewis did not say to himself, "Let us represent Jesus as He really is in our world by a Lion in Narnia." His original inspiration was much less theological than that - nothing more than a mental picture. Long before he became a Christian, he had a picture in his head of a faun carrying an umbrella and parcels in a snowy wood. Decades went past, until one day he said to himself, "Let's try to make a story about it." At first he had very little idea how the story would go. "But then suddenly," he later wrote, "Aslan came bounding into it," and "once He was there He pulled the whole story together, and soon he pulled the six other Narnian stories in after him."
I believe I am right that some people will now think, "But aren't the Chronicles of Narnia Christian at all? Doesn't Aslan die and rise again like Jesus did? Isn't that a representation of the Christian faith? If that isn't an allegory, what on earth is it?"
Well, C.S. Lewis called the Chronicles a "supposition." He wrote the books by saying, "Let us suppose such and such were true and then imagine what would happen." At first this supposition did not even contain a Christian element, but after Aslan had "bounded into" Narnia, Lewis said, "Let us suppose that reality contained different parallel worlds, and that in one of them the Son of God, as He became Man in our world, became a Lion there, and then imagine what would happen."
Now this supposition has a definite Christian element in it; the Christian element is in fact essential to it. But that does not make it an allegory. As we have seen, an allegory is trying to describe a (mostly immaterial) fact in our world by means of a picture, such as Reason being pictured as a sun-bright virgin clad in steel. Aslan, however, does not represent the immaterial God in the same way in which Lady Reason represents Reason. He is the result of a supposition. Granted the supposition, he and all the characters and events in Narnia would have been a physical reality no less than Jesus' death in first-century Palestine. Narnia is thus an imaginary world existing in its own right, having grown out of a Christian supposition, but not being an allegory of Christianity. To put it differently, Aslan is Jesus in another world; he is not an allegory of Jesus in our world. He is not a "Messiah figure"; he is the Son of God Himself.
I would encourage those who still cannot see the difference to read Lewis's "Pilgrim's Regress." Putting it side-by-side with the Chronicles of Narnia should make the distinction plain.
But no matter whether you agree with Lewis's view on the question of allegory, no book shelf is complete without the Chronicles of Narnia. One can read them again, and again, and again.


The Allegory of Love: A Study in Medieval Tradition (Oxford Paperbacks)
The Allegory of Love: A Study in Medieval Tradition (Oxford Paperbacks)
von C. S. Lewis
  Taschenbuch

5.0 von 5 Sternen A Milestone in the Lewis Canon, 6. Juli 2005
The Allegory of Love" is an academic work that, among other things, traces the concept of love in literature, particularly the concept of courtly love in medieval literature. In the "Encyclopædia Britannica," it is listed before all the other works of Lewis as "his finest scholarly work." This shows the book's importance in making Lewis a respected literary critic.
The main point of the first part of the book is that the concept of love changed in the literature of France in the eleventh century and has influenced the arts up to our day. Many years later, however, in "The Four Loves," Lewis admits that he had treated the concept of love too much like a literary phenomenon and failed to see that many characteristics of erotic love which he had attributed to eleventh-century France are in fact characteristics that lie in the very nature of erotic love (e.g., the tendency to make love into a god who sanctions any crime committed in its name).
Having said this, "The Allegory of Love" is still a great academic work that delights as much as it instructs - a milestone in the Lewis Canon.


Pilgrim's Regress
Pilgrim's Regress
von C. S. Lewis
  Taschenbuch

5.0 von 5 Sternen Unlike Anything You Have Ever Read, 6. Juli 2005
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Pilgrim's Regress (Taschenbuch)
Like most of Lewis's works, "The Pilgrim's Regress" merits regular re-reading. Originally published for an academic audience, the book is an allegory that reflects Lewis's inner journey away from the Christianized culture of his childhood to "popular realism," and from there to Philosophical Idealism, to Pantheism, to Theism, and finally to an adult-understanding of Christianity (see Afterword to the Third Edition). Thus the subtitle of the book runs "An Allegorical Apology for Christianity, Reason and Romanticism."
"The Pilgrim's Regress" might be difficult to understand for someone without prior knowledge of the philosophical developments of the past centuries, since it lies in the nature of allegory to provide pictures to concepts generally familiar to the reader and not explain the concepts didactically to an ignorant reader. But, given some extra effort, even the ignorant reader can glean many great insights from the book.
To the philosophically educated reader it should be said that in "The Pilgrim's Regress" you have a book quite unique in the twentieth century. Since Allegory Proper has not been the most popular genre of late (to say the least), and since a Christian who is equally enthusiastic about Reason and Romanticism is also rather uncommon, the book is probably unlike anything you have ever read.
If you have not already done so, it is high time to buy the book and get enriched by its insightful imagery!


An Experiment in Criticism (Canto)
An Experiment in Criticism (Canto)
von C. S. Lewis
  Taschenbuch

5.0 von 5 Sternen An Admirable and Provocative Little Book, 6. Juli 2005
C.S. Lewis is the very embodiment of the open-minded Christian, of which "An Experiment in Criticism" is perhaps the best example.
Many Christians today have what C.S. Lewis calls a "problem of belief." If they read books like "Harry Potter" at all (which they usually do not), they quickly voice their disagreement with certain ethical implications or their concern that the books incite dangerous magical practices (they also frequently voice their disagreement even when they have not read the books). Or they point out that God is totally left out of the picture.
Aside from the question whether such qualms are justified, C.S. Lewis would reply that in good reading there ought to be no "problem of belief." "A true lover of literature should be in one way like an honest examiner, who is prepared to give the highest marks to the telling, felicitous and well-documented exposition of views he dissents from or even abominates," says Lewis in "An Experiment in Criticism." "I read Lucretius and Dante at a time when (by and large) I agreed with Lucretius. I have read them since I came (by and large) to agree with Dante. I cannot find that this has much altered my experience, or at all altered my evaluation, of either."
In the book, C.S. Lewis maintains that one of the prime achievements in every good fiction "has nothing to do with truth or philosophy or a Weltanschauung" (worldview) at all. This is especially true of Lewis's favorite kind of fiction: fantasy. The primary value he saw in reading fantasy was not that he could learn truths about life but that through it he could be more than himself. He wanted to "see with other eyes, to imagine with other imaginations, to feel with other hearts," as well as with his own. Reality, even seen through the eyes of many, was not enough. He wanted to see what others had invented.
He would therefore (I think) have delighted to enter into the beliefs of J.K. Rowling or Philip Pullman, even though, as a Christian, he would have thought certain aspects of them untrue. His defense for doing this, "for occupying his heart with stories of what never happened and entering vicariously into feelings" which he tried to avoid having in his own person, was that in reading them he became "a thousand men and yet remained" himself. He saw "with a myriad eyes," but it was still he who saw. "Here, as in worship, in love, in moral action, and in knowing," he transcended himself; and was never more himself than when he did. "The man who is contented to be only himself, and therefore less a self, is in prison," he wrote.
It is needless to say that in this way C.S. Lewis learned much more from his reading than a person who looks in every book for truths about life, only to find on every page his own face staring at him. Such a person, says Lewis, "attributes to his chosen author what he believes to be wisdom; and the sort of thing that seems wise to him will obviously be determined by his own caliber. If he is a fool he will find and admire foolishness; if he is a mediocrity, platitude, in all his favourties. At best he is a profound thinker himself, and what he acclaims as his author's philosophy might in itself be good, but in reality be merely his own."
C.S. Lewis was not like that. He honestly tried to put himself into the shoes of the authors he was reading.
Whether or not you agree with C.S. Lewis's approach to reading, if you want to get to know Lewis the READER and not just the writer, "An Experiment in Criticism" is your prime source.
An admirable and provocative little book.


A Preface to Paradise Lost: Being the Ballard Matthews Lectures Delivered at University College, North Wales, 1941
A Preface to Paradise Lost: Being the Ballard Matthews Lectures Delivered at University College, North Wales, 1941
von C. S. Lewis
  Taschenbuch
Preis: EUR 20,96

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5.0 von 5 Sternen A Lucid Mind Extended by an Enchanting Pen, 6. Juli 2005
C.S. Lewis had one great advantage for truly comprehending Milton's "Paradise Lost": he shared Milton's Christianity. It seems that many modern non-Christian critics of Milton impose concepts on the text which would have been foreign to Milton. Lewis, in contrast, belonged in his whole mindset (according to his own admission) much more to bygone ages than to the twentieth century. Thus he was able to understand bygone poets more than most people today.
Added to this advantage is of course Lewis's gift of having a lucid mind extended by an enchanting pen. His writings, including his academic ones, bristle with a liveliness lacking in most academic circles. "A Preface to Paradise Lost" is no exception in this regard.
As for the content of the "Preface," Lewis first spends eight chapters describing and defending the style of Epic Poetry, to which "Paradise Lost" belongs. He distinguishes between Primary and Secondary Epic and draws parallels to the Roman poet Virgil. The remaining eleven chapters are used to discuss the theological concepts in "Paradise Lost," making particular note of St. Augustine's influence on Milton.
The bottom line of the book is that Milton's poem, more than anything else, embodies concepts found in the Bible and the teachings of the Church, and that the supposed "revolutionary" concepts in Milton have largely been forced upon the text by later critics.
My own experience of reading Milton, for what it is worth, agrees with this view. I studied the Bible and church history quite extensively BEFORE I picked up "Paradise Lost," and I was surprised to find how very unoriginal the poem was in its portrayed concepts (which does not mean that it is a bad poem); almost everything in Milton has its source either in the Bible or in Christian traditions and teachings.
Edward Wagenknecht from "The New York Times" was right to say that in the "Preface," C.S. Lewis's "most valiant service is to protect us against the many students of Milton who have not been able to see the woods for the trees" (taken from the back cover of the book).
A superb academic work - not only for academic readers.


Studies in Words (Canto)
Studies in Words (Canto)
von C. S. Lewis
  Taschenbuch
Preis: EUR 20,69

5.0 von 5 Sternen A Love for Words, 6. Juli 2005
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Studies in Words (Canto) (Taschenbuch)
Someone once said that good teachers do not only teach a subject but also impart a LOVE for the subject. This C.S. Lewis certainly did to me through his "Studies in Words." I read the book a while ago, and though I do not remember every detail, a deep love for words and language has been with me ever since.
Naturally the book offers more than mere love for linguistics: it is also a tool for truly appreciating and understanding older literature. By tracing a number of key words through the centuries, C.S. Lewis helps the reader to understand how concepts change and what effect that has on one's understanding of literature.
Lastly, for those who relish C.S. Lewis's other works, "Studies in Words" might prove a fascinating view of yet another facet of Lewis's wide-ranging writings. Full points!


Gespräch mit Gott: Gedanken zu den Psalmen
Gespräch mit Gott: Gedanken zu den Psalmen
von Clive St. Lewis
  Gebundene Ausgabe

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5.0 von 5 Sternen Ehrlich, tief, und erfrischend!, 23. Januar 2003
C.S. Lewis traut sich, fragen zu stellen, an die sich viele Christen nicht heranwagen: Wie sollen wir die "Schadenfreude" in den Psalmen verstehen? In welchem Sinn sind die Psalmen Gottes Wort? Wie soll man die prophetischen Auslegungen der Psalmen im Neuen Testament angehen? Ist Gott ein Herrscher, der ständiges Lob von allen fordert? - diesen und vielen anderen Fragen geht C.S. Lewis auf den Grund, und das in seiner klaren, ehrlichen und erfrischenden Weise.


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