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The Screwtape Letters (1942)

by C. S. Lewis

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A series of congenial letters from Screwtape, an elderly devil, advising his nephew Wormwood, an apprentice devil, how to corrupt his earthly "patient."

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» See also 324 mentions

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Good read. I found myself with my highlighter out, being surprised at how much Screwtape was prevalent in today's world. scary. ( )
  sboehm1977 | Jan 31, 2024 |
Last year was an eye opening to me when it comes how easily can people be manipulated. One would think manipulation is required when there is no apparent danger - trust me when I say that it does not matter and even in case of direct health threat (like last year) manipulation is used by the unscrupulous parts of society. In everlasting quest for power, forces-that-are are willing to further the suffering of the people. Why? I guess their assistants say why not! Cannot harm to create such an atmosphere that would help them remain in power. No matter the cost.

And this brings us to this book. Some say this is christian apologetic book but I can tell you that this book, funny and witty as it is, reads as a bloody manual on a psychological manipulation. Direct instructions on how to make people self-centered, how to play on that almighty emotion called fear to control them and direct them, how to make them look down on others and justify everything through the prism of me-me-me-me-and-only-me..... Manual I tell you. And dont get me started on the Toast chapter. It is incredible how some things were visible for over the 100 years now and yet people let majority of these predictions come true. Craazzyy.

In terms of the book itself author has a very sharp mind and is ready to make jokes on his own religion account (imagine that today? HA!). I had a giggle ever so often. Every letter, every instruction strikes right into the heart of the matter and I am sure that non-religious people will also recognize themselves in targets of these tempsters as little devils try to find the chinks in human armor to ensure they end up several floors below the ground (and not above).

Excellent book, highly recommended. ( )
  Zare | Jan 23, 2024 |
This classic has entertained and enlightened readers the world over with its sly and ironic portrayal of human life and foibles from the unique vantage point of Screwtape, a highly placed assistant to "Our Father Below." At once wildly comic, deadly serious, and strikingly original, C. S. Lewis gives us the correspondence of the worldly-wise devil to his nephew Wormwood, a novice demon in charge of securing the damnation of an ordinary young man. The Screwtape Letters is the most engaging account of temptation--and triumph over it--ever written.
  PlumfieldCH | Sep 21, 2023 |
includes Screwtape Proposes
  SrMaryLea | Aug 22, 2023 |
This is quite a humorous book, though I believe Lewis wrote it as also a serious one. ( )
  mykl-s | Aug 12, 2023 |
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"The devil," said Thomas More, "cannot endure to be mocked," and which, if correct, means that somewhere in the inferno there must be considerable annoyance.
added by Shortride | editThe New York Times Book Review, P. W. Wilson (pay site) (Mar 28, 1943)

» Add other authors (48 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
C. S. Lewisprimary authorall editionscalculated
Ackland, JossNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Cleese, JohnNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Cosham, RalphNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Papas, BillIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Tuulio, TyyniTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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'The best way to drive out the devil, if he will not yield to texts of Scripture, is to jeer and flout him, for he cannot bear scorn.'
'The devil . . . the prowde spirite . . . cannot endure to be mocked.'
—Thomas More
To J. R. R. Tolkien
First words
My dear Wormwood, I note what you say about guiding your patient's reading and taking care that he sees a good deal of his materialist friend.
All horrors have followed the same course, getting worse and worse and forcing you into a kind of bottleneck till, at the very moment when you thought you must be crushed, behold!  you were out of the narrows and all was suddenly well.  The extraction hurt more and more and then the tooth was out.  The dream became a nightmare and then you woke.  You die and die and then you are beyond death.
Do not be deceived, Wormwood.  Our cause is never more in danger than when a human, no longer desiring, but still intending, to do our Enemy’s will looks round upon a universe from which every trace of Him seems to have vanished, and asks why he has been forsaken, and still obeys.
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Please do not combine this LT work with any abridged edition, or with any edition that includes Lewis' additional piece, "Screwtape Proposes a Toast." Each of these variants should be combined only with similar LT works. Thank you.
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A series of congenial letters from Screwtape, an elderly devil, advising his nephew Wormwood, an apprentice devil, how to corrupt his earthly "patient."

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