Criticism Of The Screwtape Letters

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What a Tragedy! The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis is a satirical comedy about a demon, Wormwood, who tries to influence the behavior of his patient. The letters are written to Wormwood by his uncle, Screwtape. Wormwood’s ultimate goal by influencing the patient’s actions is to ensure that he will end up in hell. Though Wormwood tries his best to excel in every task he is assigned, he usually ends up failing. As a result of Wormwood’s failures, Screwtape provides him with helpful advice that comes with criticism. Although Lewis intended for the story to be comical, it should be interpreted as a tragedy. In the beginning of chapter 5, Screwtape is infuriated with Wormwood. Screwtape expected a detailed report from Wormwood on his progress with the patient and instead he received a “vague rhapsody” because Wormwood was intoxicated. Wormwood is reminded that “duty comes before pleasure.” This instance is similar to one that Henri Bergson uses in his theory of comedy. Bergson suggest the idea of absentmindedness. He defines this as, “when a certain comic effect has its origin in a certain cause, the more natural we regard the cause to be, the more comic shall we find the effect.” (Bergson) Most adults would claim that they have had a drink of alcohol before. Drinking alcohol is a natural human feature, that even Jesus partook in. However, when done in excess it can cause a series of issues. One issue being that you are not able to properly complete your work like

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