Darwin in Deep Heaven
The Introduction situates Lewis’s Space Trilogy in the context of the 1930s and surveys the distinctive features of this study, suggesting that contrary to his self-styled image as an intellectual “dinosaur,” Lewis is at once deeply engaged with the modern evolutionary paradigm and eager to explore the pioneering insights that arose in its wake. In each successive novel Lewis targets a different version of the developmental model—the “materialist” (Darwinian) view in the first story; the “vitalist” (Bergsonian) philosophy in the sequel; and the “spiritual” (Babelian) dream of the evolutionary ascent of Man into God in the finale. At the same time, each of Lewis’s providentially governed communities—the “unfallen” worlds of Mars and Venus and the terrestrial manor of St. Anne’s, respectively—is constructed not as the polar opposite but as the transfiguration or “taking up” of the specific evolutionary doctrine to which it stands opposed.
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