The Company They Keep: C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien as Writers in Community

The Company They Keep C S Lewis and J R R Tolkien as Writers in Community C S Lewis J R R Tolkien and the other members of the Inklings circle had a tremendous influence on one another this book explains why It also paints a lively and compelling picture of the way that w

  • Title: The Company They Keep: C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien as Writers in Community
  • Author: Diana Pavlac Glyer
  • ISBN: 9780873389914
  • Page: 431
  • Format: Paperback
  • C S Lewis, J R R Tolkien, and the other members of the Inklings circle had a tremendous influence on one another this book explains why It also paints a lively and compelling picture of the way that writers, artists, and other innovators can and should challenge, correct, and encourage each other.

    One thought on “The Company They Keep: C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien as Writers in Community”

    1. Until I read this book, Humphrey Carpenter's Inklings: C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, Charles Williams and Their Friends, published nearly thirty years ago, was the most comprehensive treatment of the group that I had ever encountered. It wasn't all that comprehensive, being focused mainly on C.S. Lewis as the central figure. Though the book was an engaging read, Carpenter tended to summarize and judge the Inklings' subsidiary writings for the reader, skipping mention of others altogether. Carpente [...]

    2. It is a wonderfully thought provoking book. Easy to read, very clear writing, and incredibly well referenced. The extensive footnotes at the end of each chapter were just as rewarding as the chapter itself. The book is a study of literary influence, using the Inklings as a case study. There has (evidentially) been a great deal of denial over the mutual influence of the Inklings on any particular member’s particular work. First, the author goes through the four previously defined types of liter [...]

    3. This is the first book in the C.S. Lewis-Tolkien course being offered this semester by the Mythgard Institute. Can't wait till it starts!

    4. Several books and articles have been written about the literary group known as the Inklings, but this is one of the best and most informative. The Inklings were a group of friends who met in Oxford to read to each other, and criticise each other's work. There were 19 members of the group, though they were not all present at every gathering, and joined and left at various times. At the core of the group was C.S. Lewis, and most of the other members were his friends. Among the most active members [...]

    5. This is one of the most important Inklings studies in the last few years (the others are Planet Narnia, C.S. Lewis on the Final Frontier, The Cambridge Companion to C.S. Lewis, Charles Williams & His Contemporaries, and C.S. Lewis & the Church). If you had to pick just two, I would recommend this one and Planet Narnia. This is a lovely, lively, fascinating study of the many ways that the Inklings influenced one another. As a writer in community myself, I found it very encouraging.

    6. I cannot say enough to recommend Glyer's book to anyone interested in Inklings studies. Thoroughly researched, carefully constructed, and engagingly written, it is an achievement which justly deserves the praise and respect it has received. The Company They Keep takes a deep dive into the question of precisely how Tolkien, Lewis, and the others in their circle did (or did not) influence each other. Glyer identifies a trend in Inklings studies which seemed to deny great influence between the writ [...]

    7. Synopsis:It has been widely and vehemently put forth that the Inklings, a group comprised mainly of writers (including J. R. R. Tolkien, C. S. Lewis, and Charles Williams) who met regularly to read their works to each other over the course of more than fifteen years, was simply and solely a social club. Biographers, scholars, and in some cases the Inklings themselves have denied that the members of the group either exerted influence over or were influenced by the others. Ms. Glyer, however, pres [...]

    8. I am a fringe Inkling follower. I was fascinated to discover that the creators of such famous literary works as The Chronicles and Lord of the Rings were such close personal friends and influenced each other through very common means.This book strikes a good balance of being completely academic yet approachable for the common reader who is interested in the Inklings. Glyer sets out the bigger picture by defining common methods of influence in community, and then proceeds to show how those played [...]

    9. I heard about this book in 2008, and ordered it off , not realizing I'd get a chance to meet author Diana Pavlac Glyer that very month! I haven't finished the book yet, since it keeps getting borrowed by insistent friends (and I'm still prioritizing going through my list of Lewis-authored books), but it is certainly a good take on the creative exchanges that took place between CS Lewis, JRR Tolkien, and the rest of the Oxford coterie known as the Inklings.

    10. Excellent study, not only of the Inklings and how they added and abetted one another, but also how many writers--all artists of all ilks--may profit from connecting to a similar community. Well done.

    11. Extraordinarily thorough and clear chronicle of the Inklings' influence on each other. Where the book really shines is the author's apologia for collaboration and influence as an inherent and beneficial part of creativity, not a weakness or distraction.

    12. I liked it. I liked it a lot. The book shows the many ways the members of the Inklings assisted each other with their writing, promotion of their various publications, and stimulated each other with discussion and more discussion. She argues that it was through these forms of assistance that the Inklings influenced each other's writing.What Influence, if any? -- is a natural question to occur to readers when they move from the work of an Inkling to learning of the existence of the group. Glyer's [...]

    13. Superlative. Simply the best of its kind, and a joy to read. I plan to get my own copy so that I can reread the text, this time paying more attention to the hilarious, touching, and informative footnotes. I have to mention one strength in particular of Glyer's. Like most Inklings fans, I know my Humphrey Carpenter. I have been uncomfortable at his psychological guesses and assumptions of the Inklings. It seemed to go beyond the documentary evidence, and it was simply unnecessary. Glyer so gracef [...]

    14. The basic premise of the book is to refute the (apparently accepted) claim that the Inklings (inc. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Charles Williams, etc.) had no significant influence on each others work. But what makes the book more interesting is the basic presupposition that all work is a consequence of our interdependence with others. Glyer rejects the notion that demonstrating that an author's work is influenced by others somehow makes it less impressive. This is in contrast with the image of the lone [...]

    15. I first became acquainted with C.S. Lewis in college. I was drawn to his lucidity and insight. After reading a few of his books, I couldn’t get enough. In my late college years and early twenties I set out to read everything he wrote. I didn’t read his academic works on medieval literature, but did get through pretty much everything else, fiction and non-fiction alike. Ever since then, I’ve been fascinated by Lewis and his writing. I’ve even been to Oxford and to the Eagle and Child, the [...]

    16. This book is sort of a group literary biography of an influential group of English scholars and writers, jointly known as The Inklings. The author's point is that the men who formd this group influenced each other ina host of informal ways that helped to shapr their writing, over many years.Heavily footnoted and annotated, the book is a literary scholar's delight, but also has very intresting insights into the writing and the thought processes of The Inklings. The book is not a quick read, but f [...]

    17. I rather enjoyed reading this book and might've given it 4 stars if the writing style was not so consciously academic. This is understandable if it was Glyer's dissertation but still rather annoying. Also, her argument is utterly common sense which doesn't always make for exciting reading, though it is interesting to consider how Inklings scholarship found itself on the wrong side of said sense.Nevertheless, Glyer is a great introduction to Inklings studies.

    18. These was an excellent book, both on the writing process and on the Inklings. I found Glyer's account of influence, collaboration, and friendship amongst the Inklings lovely. Especially beautiful is how the experiences of this hallowed group line up with those of so many of us amateur or less hallowed writers. It was fun to watch the lines of influence form and merge and diverge, and fun to read about various Inklings interactions.

    19. From the author: The Company They Keep: C. S. Lewis and J. R. R. Tolkien as Writers in Community is a labor of love, the work of my heart. It tells the story of the Inklings, a writing group that included Lewis, Tolkien, Owen Barfield, Charles Williams, Warren Hamilton Lewis, John Wain, and others. They met in Oxford for a period of about seventeen years, reading their work out loud and encouraging, criticizing, and supporting each other in dozens of different ways.

    20. I read this book as part of a class on the Inklings taught by Dr. Glyer herself. What an interesting read. I loved all the anecdotes, and I loved hearing her own personal anecdotes on the creative process. Can't wait to take a class from her again this spring for which this book is also required reading!

    21. Participated in a seminar with Diana Glyer at Oxbridge. Some very interesting possibilities for small group development in ISP and mentoring groups. Follow up has had significant impact on my work with faculty development and mentoring. Thank you, Diana, for this profound work!

    22. Brilliant book on what is one of my eternally favorite subjects -- Lewis and the Inklings. What is remarkable in this work is Glyer's ability to make solid scholarship equally readable and to present ideas about working in community refreshingly clear and tangible.

    23. THE place to start when curious about The Inklings, especially Tolkien's and Lewis's relationship with BUT this book is also a superb piece of inspiration that will help any writer through struggles, challenges, and times when they (we) wonder if we are getting something wrong.

    24. Great study of what "influence" is and how the Inkling's interacted on a personal, literary level. Well written!

    25. A fascinating read about the role of community in the creative process, especially in the writing process. The insights about Tolkien, Lewis, and the rest of the Inklings were very encouraging.

    26. I liked the concept - looking at the interplay of mutual influences of various kinds within a group of friends who were also writers - but found the minutiae of detail tracing these a little tedious.

    27. This great book is a detailed account of the Inklings. I love the support they gave each other. It makes me want to be in such a group myself. I recommend this very interesting and inspiring book!

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