Annual Christian Lecture to be Held at UTC
Gresham, C.S. Lewis' Stepson, to Lecture

Douglas Gresham, stepson of author C.S. Lewis, will speak on the "Last of the Dinosaurs: C.S. Lewis and Contemporary Culture" at UTC's annual C.S. Lewis Lecture, Monday, April 6, 7:30 p.m.

The event is free and open to the public and will be held in the Roland Hayes Concert Hall in the Fine Arts Center on the UTC campus.

Gresham will address what he perceives his stepfather's attitude would be about Christianity if he were alive today. He will also speak about his autobiography, Lenten Lands, in which he details his own life with Lewis, and how he grew to accept him as his "real father."

Gresham, who now lives in Ireland, was ten when his mother, Joy Davidman, quietly married C.S. ("Jack") Lewis in a secret, civil ceremony. Shortly thereafter, she was diagnosed with bone cancer and died when Gresham was 14. Lewis died four years later. Gresham says that their marriage, regarded by many at the time as a charitable gesture on Jack's part, "became very quickly a real marriage in both Jack's mind and Mother's."

Gresham says he regarded Lewis as his real father. "My feeling for Jack developed from liking and respect through admiration to, at last, some degree of understanding... I realized that I loved Jack, and very deeply at that."

Even now, 35 years after his death, Lewis' books are still popular and successful. Mere Christianity, The Screwtape Letters, and The Chronicles of Narnia have earned the rank of classics. Shadowlands, starring Anthony Hopkins and Debra Winger, is the second film in recent years about Lewis and his late marriage to Joy Davidman Gresham.

The C.S. Lewis Lectureship was established in 1983 by InterVarsity Christian Fellowship to perpetuate the Christian and literary legacy of Clive Staples Lewis. The lecturers in the C.S. Lewis series are chosen for their ability to communicate the message of Christ to the modern world.

Dr. Doug Kutz, chemistry, said the planning committee tries to invite lecturers who are well-established scholars and who also are members of the Christian faith. "That's one of the greatest benefits of the series. It's one of the few opportunities that those of us in academic circles have to discuss scholarship and personal faith at the same time," said Kutz.

For information, call Kutz at 425-4278.

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Last updated: March 31, 1998.
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