A Grief Observed

Front Cover
Zondervan, Mar 29, 1989 - Religion - 96 pages
44 Reviews

Written with love, humility, and faith, this brief but poignant volume was first published in 1961 and concerns the death of C. S. Lewis's wife, the American-born poet Joy Davidman. In her introduction to this new edition, Madeleine L'Engle writes: "I am grateful to Lewis for having the courage to yell, to doubt, to kick at God in angry violence. This is a part of a healthy grief which is not often encouraged. It is helpful indeed that C. S. Lewis, who has been such a successful apologist for Christianity, should have the courage to admit doubt about what he has so superbly proclaimed. It gives us permission to admit our own doubts, our own angers and anguishes, and to know that they are part of the soul's growth."

Written in longhand in notebooks that Lewis found in his home, A Grief Observed probes the "mad midnight moments" of Lewis's mourning and loss, moments in which he questioned what he had previously believed about life and death, marriage, and even God. Indecision and self-pity assailed Lewis. "We are under the harrow and can't escape," he writes. "I know that the thing I want is exactly the thing I can never get. The old life, the jokes, the drinks, the arguments, the lovemaking, the tiny, heartbreaking commonplace." Writing A Grief Observed as "a defense against total collapse, a safety valve," he came to recognize that "bereavement is a universal and integral part of our experience of love."

Lewis writes his statement of faith with precision, humor, and grace. Yet neither is Lewis reluctant to confess his continuing doubts and his awareness of his own human frailty. This is precisely the quality which suggests that A Grief Observed may become "among the great devotional books of our age."

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
27
4 stars
12
3 stars
3
2 stars
1
1 star
1

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - homeschoolmimzi - LibraryThing

Started this book and was expecting it to be somewhat comforting. .. haven't found it to be so yet, but I'm not even half way through. It's not a long book though. Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Erika.D - LibraryThing

Excellent. I used C.S. Lewis' observations on grief to look at my own issues with grief for loss, instead of death and i was so lifted at the similarities between his observations and my own. God is ... Read full review

Other editions - View all

References to this book

All Book Search results »

About the author (1989)

Clive Staples Lewis (1898-1963) was one of the intellectual giants of the twentieth century and arguably the most influential Christian writer of his day. He was a Fellow and Tutor in English literature at Oxford University until 1954 when he was unanimously elected to the Chair of Medieval and Renaissance English at Cambridge University, a position he held until his retirement. His major contributions in literary criticism, children's literature, fantasy literature, and popular theology brought him international renown and acclaim. He wrote more than thirty books, allowing him to reach a vast audience, and his works continue to attract thousands of new readers every year. His most distinguished and popular accomplishments include The Chronicles of Narnia, Out of the Silent Planet, The Four Loves, The Screwtape Letters, and Mere Christianity.

hr

Clive Staples Lewis (1898-1963) fue uno de los intelectuales mÁs importantes del siglo veinte y podrÍa decirse que fue el escritor cristiano mÁs influyente de su tiempo. Fue profesor particular de literatura inglesa y miembro de la junta de gobierno en la Universidad Oxford hasta 1954, cuando fue nombrado profesor de literatura medieval y renacentista en la Universidad Cambridge, cargo que desempeÑÓ hasta que se jubilÓ. Sus contribuciones a la crÍtica literaria, literatura infantil, literatura fantÁstica y teologÍa popular le trajeron fama y aclamaciÓn a nivel internacional. C. S. Lewis escribiÓ mÁs de treinta libros, lo cual le permitiÓ alcanzar una enorme audiencia, y sus obras aÚn atraen a miles de nuevos lectores cada aÑo. Sus mÁs distinguidas y populares obras incluyen Las CrÓnicas de Narnia, Los Cuatro Amores, Cartas del Diablo a Su Sobrino y Mero Cristianismo.

Bibliographic information