Photo: Ashley Simpson, Sarah Clower, Rachel Bales, Kayla Hastings
A simple assignment in an English class turned opportunity for four Hardin-Simmons University students who recently presented their study of Christian author C.S. Lewis during the 16th Annual Meeting of the C.S. Lewis & Inklings Society.
The society, which upholds and promotes the advancement of scholarship, teaching, writing, and other professional activities related to the life and works of C.S. Lewis and the Inklings, sponsored the event held late March, at LeTourneau University, Longview, Texas.
HSU professor of English, Dr. Larry Fink, made the assignment in his 2012 fall semester class, Thought and Fiction of C.S. Lewis. Students, Rachel Bales, a junior English major from San Antonio, Texas; Sarah Clower, a senior graphic design major from Benjamin, Texas; Kayla Hastings, senior English and psychology major from Bells, Texas; and Ashley Simpson, a graduate student from Abilene, adapted their class papers for conference presentation.
Bales presented, “Self Will and Emotion in Five C.S. Lewis Works”; Clower read “Mythological Fact: C.S. Lewis’ Ideas on Mythology”. Hastings presented “The Psychology of Screwtape”, and Ashley Simpson, a graduate student, read her paper “Orual’s Bildungsroman through a Myth Retold in C.S. Lewis’ Till We Have Faces.”
Fink, a long-time student of Lewis’ writing, also presented a paper, “C.S. Lewis’ The Abolition of Man and Sylvan Tomkins’ Affect Script Psychology.” He teaches Thought and Fiction of C.S. Lewis every other fall semester, and this year—for the first time—is offering the class in the summer (session II). Fink was also elected president of the C.S. Lewis & Inklings Society for the 2013-14 academic year. Fink has also served as president of the Southwest Conference on Christianity & Literature, and directed a meeting of the C.S. Lewis and Inklings Society on the HSU campus in 2007.