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“The human mind has no more power of inventing a new value than of imagining a new primary colour, or, indeed, of creating a new sun and a new sky for it to move in.”

  • C.S. Lewis, The Abolition of Man

 

In this episode we are joined by Michael Ward, author of the award-winning and best-selling Planet Narnia: The Seven Heavens in the Imagination of C.S. Lewis and After Humanity: A Guide to C.S. Lewis’s The Abolition of Man. We discuss Michael’s theory, laid out in Planet Narnia, that Lewis wrote the series to have each book centred around the influence of each of the seven heavenly bodies of medieval cosmology. We also discuss Lewis’ work the need for objective truth, especially in education, in The Abolition of Man, how he represented these ideas through fiction in his Space Trilogy, in particular the last book of the series That Hideous Strength.

 

Hosts: Rachel Sherlock, Michael Ward

Follow Rachel on social media: @seekingwatson

Follow the podcast on Instagram: @riskingenchantmentpodcast

Find out more at www.rachelsherlock.com

Find out more about Michael at: https://michaelward.net/

Sign up for our email list at www.rachelsherlock.com/podcast

Music: Ashton Manor by Kevin MacLeod

 

Works Mentioned

Planet Narnia: The Seven Heavens in the Imagination of C.S. Lewis by Michael Ward

The Narnia Code: C. S. Lewis and the Secret of the Seven Heavens by Michael Ward

After Humanity: A Guide to C.S. Lewis’s The Abolition of Man by Michael Ward

The Narnia Chronicles by C.S. Lewis

The Abolition of Man by C.S. Lewis

The Space Trilogy by C.S. Lewis

Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis

Manalive! By G.K Chesterton

Sherlock (TV Series)

 

What We’re Enjoying at the Moment

Michael: A Man for all Seasons (1966)

      Any Human Heart by William Boyd

Rachel: Sabrina (1964)

“[Paradox is] truth standing on its head to gain attention." - G.K. Chesterton

In this Easter episode of Risking Enchantment, Rachel and Phoebe discuss two of Chesterton’s books: Manalive and St. Francis of Assisi. We draw out the similarities in themes, characters, and messages between the two books, in particular the use of paradoxes and seeming contradictions, as well as the general atmosphere of vibrant and energetic virtue. The main characters of each of these books, Innocent Smith, and St. Francis of Assisi both turn the world upside down in various ways, inverting people’s expectations and confounding their preconceptions. In both cases Chesterton uses his typical contrarian charm to show his readers the wondrous gift of life through God.

Music: Ashton Manor by Kevin MacLeod

Hosts: Rachel Sherlock, Phoebe Watson

Follow me on social media: @seekingwatson

Follow the podcast on Instagram: @riskingenchantmentpodcast

Find out more at www.rachelsherlock.com

Sign up for our email list at www.rachelsherlock.com/podcast

Works Mentioned in this Episode:

Manalive by G.K. Chesterton

St. Francis of Assisi by G.K. Chesterton

Orthodoxy by G.K. Chesterton

Chesterton and Saint Francis” by Joseph Pearce

“Reason Exhausted: Paradoxes of G. K. Chesterton and C. S. Lewis” by Sara Park McLaughlin

“Two Kinds of Paradox” by G.K. Chesterton

What We're Enjoying at the Moment:

Phoebe: Georgette Heyer Novels

Rachel: Holiday to Rome

[Joseph’s] incomparable example as a saint fortunate among so many for having lived a common life with Jesus and Mary—a life of service to Christ, a service born of love.

- Saint Paul VI on the Feast of Saint Joseph (March 19, 1966)

 

We’re delighted to welcome Elizabeth Lev back to the podcast. In her first episode, ​​Elizabeth Lev: Founding Christian Art and Redeeming Roman Myth we discussed her book How Catholic Art Saved the Faith: The Triumph of Beauty and Truth in Counter-Reformation Art the how early Christians evangelised to the Romans through art and architecture. Now Elizabeth is joining us again to discuss her new book The Silent Knight: A History of St. Joseph as Depicted in Art. We talk about Pope Francis’ call to turn in prayer to St Joseph in our current age, the many ways that St Joseph has been represented in art throughout the centuries, and how this art can help us to cultivate a devotion to him.

 

Follow Elizabeth Lev:

Twitter: @lizlevrome

Instagram: @lizlevinrome

Website: elizabeth-lev.com

Elizabeth also runs Masters' Gallery Rome where you can join to get great lectures about Roman art.

Music: Ashton Manor by Kevin MacLeod

Hosts: Rachel Sherlock, 

Follow us on social media: @seekingwatson 

Follow the podcast on Instagram: @riskingenchantmentpodcast

Find out more at www.rachelsherlock.com

 

Works Mentioned:

How Catholic Art Saved the Faith: The Triumph of Beauty and Truth in Counter-Reformation Art by Elizabeth Lev

The Silent Knight: A History of St. Joseph as Depicted in Art by Elizabeth Lev

Patris Corde by Pope Francis

Joseph the Worker by Modesto Faustini

Flight to Egypt by Giotto

Washing of the Feet by Giotto

St Joseph Cradling the Infant Christ by Guido Reni

Rest on the Flight to Egypt by Caravaggio

Christ Crowning Saint Joseph by Francisco de Zurbarán

St. Joseph and the Child Jesus by Bartolomé Esteban Murillo

Flight to Egypt by Gislebertus, Autun Cathedral

Death of Saint Joseph by Giuseppe Maria Crespi

Death of Saint Joseph by William Blake

Limbo by Sister Mary Ada

Rest on the Flight to Egypt by Barroci

Nuptials of the Virgin by Rosso Fiorrentino

The Holy Family with a Palm Tree by Raphael

Betrothed – Glimpses of the Betrothal of Mary and Joseph by Paraic Maher

The Nagasaki Martyrs by the Cuzco School

St. Joseph and the Child Jesus by Dony MacManus

The Holy Family by Janet McKenzie

St. Joseph Terror of Demons by Bernadette Carstensen

St. Joseph and the Christ Child by Francesco Grandi

What We’re Enjoying At the Moment

 

Face to Face: Portraits of the Divine in Early Christianity by Robin M Jensen

Gods and Fighting Men by Lady Augusta Gregory

“The Word himself was the first Gardener. In the beginning he planted a tree in the garden of Eden that grew the fruit of immortal life"

- Vigen Guroian

In this episode Rachel is joined by Reba Luiken, director of Allen Centennial Garden at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, to discuss how gardening grounds us, both in the gifts of our bodies and the gifts of Creation. We talk about how we can look to Nature to understand God, and how the seasonal year helps us to understand our faith and the sacraments.

Music: Ashton Manor by Kevin MacLeod

Hosts: Rachel Sherlock, Reba Luiken

Follow me on social media: @seekingwatson

Follow the podcast on Instagram: @riskingenchantmentpodcast

Find out more at www.rachelsherlock.com

Sign up for our email list at www.rachelsherlock.com/podcast

 

Works Mentioned in this Episode

Inheriting Paradise by Vigen Guroian

The Fragrance of God by Vigen Guroian

Walden by Henry David Thoreau

Springing into the Season - Risking Enchantment

"Christ the Gardener of our Souls" by Brent Klaske, Angelus Press

"Godly Gardening", Food and Faith: A Theology of Eating by Norman Wirzba

The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien by J.R.R. Tolkien

The Two Towers by J.R.R. Tolkien

Beasts at Bedtime: Revealing the Environmental Wisdom in Children's Literature by Liam Heneghan

The Secret Garden by Lucy Maud Montegomery

Laudato si' by Pope Francis

The Grace of Enough: Pursuing Less and Living More in a Throwaway Culture by Haley Stewart

 

Things We're Enjoying At The Moment

Reba: Joyful: The Surprising Power of Ordinary Things to Create Extraordinary Happiness by Ingrid Fetell Lee

Rachel: Mary Poppins Soundtrack, LP

“The great abstract nouns of the classical English moralists are unblushingly and uncompromisingly used: good sense, courage, contentment, fortitude…Contrasted with the world of modern fiction, Jane Austen’s is at once less soft and less cruel.” - C.S. Lewis, “A Note on Jane Austen”

 

In this episode, we are joined by Haley Stewart, a Catholic convert, writer, speaker, podcaster, and Managing Editor of Word on Fire Spark, their new publishing line for children and young readers. We discuss Haley’s new book, coming this March, Jane Austen's Genius Guide to Life: On Love, Friendship, and Becoming the Person God Created You to Be by Haley Stewart. We talk about the profound and vibrant ways Jane Austen explores morals and virtues in her novels. In particular we highlight the themes of prudence and constancy in Northanger Abbey and Mansfield Park, respectively, as well as speaking about Austen’s peculiar genius for rendering the moral journeys of her characters. 

Music: Ashton Manor by Kevin MacLeod

Hosts: Rachel Sherlock, Haley Stewart

Follow me on social media: @seekingwatson

Follow the podcast on Instagram: @riskingenchantmentpodcast

Follow Haley on social media: @HaleyCarrots

Find out more at www.rachelsherlock.com

Sign up for our email list at www.rachelsherlock.com/podcast

Find Haley Stewart’s Work:

 

Jane Austen's Genius Guide to Life: On Love, Friendship, and Becoming the Person God Created You to Be by Haley Stewart

 

The Grace of Enough: Pursuing Less and Living More in a Throwaway Culture by Haley Stewart

 

Carrots for Michaelmas blog

 

Fountains of Carrots Podcast

 

Word on Fire Institute

Works Mentioned:

 

Jane Austen's Genius Guide to Life: On Love, Friendship, and Becoming the Person God Created You to Be by Haley Stewart

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen

Mansfield Park by Jane Austen

Emma by Jane Austen

Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen

Persuasion by Jane Austen

Love and Friendship by Jane Austen, introduction by G.K. Chesterton

The Illustrated Letters of Jane Austen, Selected and Introduced by Penelope Hughes-Hallett

“A Note on Jane Austen”, Selected Literary Essays by C.S. Lewis

 

Things We’re Enjoying at the Moment

 

Haley: All Creatures Great and Small (2020 TV Series)

Rachel: Caper Board Game

“I now see that I spent most of my life in doing neither what I ought nor what I liked”.

C.S. Lewis, The Screwtape Letters

Risking Enchantment is back for 2022, and in our first episode back Rachel is joined by Phoebe, to discuss our resolutions for how we hope to spend our time in the coming year. Using the above quote as inspiration, we discuss how to balance productivity with leisure, how schedules enable us to achieve our goals but can also lead us into the tyranny of efficiency, and how leisure is part of God’s plan for us but in our modern age true leisure is hard to achieve. We look to literary references to help us understand how best to spend our time, whether it’s the story of nuns and the tolling bell of their schedule in Rumer Godden’s book In This House of Brede, or Fran Lebowitz’s life of idleness as listed her humorous book Metropolitan Life.

 

Music: Ashton Manor by Kevin MacLeod

Hosts: Rachel Sherlock, Phoebe Watson

Follow me on social media: @seekingwatson

Follow the podcast on Instagram: @riskingenchantmentpodcast

Find out more at www.rachelsherlock.com

Sign up for our email list at www.rachelsherlock.com/podcast

 

Works Mentioned in this Episode:

The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis

“The Lost Art of Intentionality” - Word on Fire

From The Writing Life by Annie Dillard

Idle Moments: Literary Loafers through the Ages and Pages - The Slightly Foxed Podcast

The Fran Lebowitz Reader by Fran Lebowitz

Heretics by G.K. Chesterton

The Fellowship of the Ring by J.R.R. Tolkien

In This House of Brede by Rumer Godden

The Power of Silence: Against the Dictatorship of Noise by Cardinal Robert Sarah

Wonder in a Digital Age - Born of Wonder podcast

“Burnt Norton” by T.S. Eliot

“The Three Sicknesses of U.S. Society: Racism, Poverty, and War” by Martin Luther King Jr 

 

What We're Enjoying at the Moment:

Phoebe: The Lord of the Rings, audiobook read by Rob Inglis

Rachel: That Hideous Strength by C.S. Lewis

“The more we are proud that the Bethlehem story is plain enough to be understood by the shepherds, and almost by the sheep, the more do we let ourselves go, in dark and gorgeous imaginative frescoes or pageants about the mystery and majesty of the Three Magian Kings.” - G.K. Chesterton

 

For our last episode of 2021, Phoebe is back again to discuss the wonderful paradox in celebrating Christmas that calls for both humility and extravagance. We discuss the mystery of the Christmas story, and the deep humility that Christ demonstrates to us in coming as a child in a manager, as well as our responding call to humility and generosity. We also discuss our need for splendour in our liturgies but also in our culture and our surroundings. We delve into the magic of The Nutcracker Ballet and the splendour to be found in our own Christmas decorations.

 

We hope you enjoy the episode and wish you all a very Merry Christmas and blessings for the new year ahead.

 

Music: Ashton Manor by Kevin MacLeod

Hosts: Rachel Sherlock, Phoebe Watson

Follow me on social media: @seekingwatson

Follow the podcast on Instagram: @riskingenchantmentpodcast

Find out more at www.rachelsherlock.com

Sign up for our email list at www.rachelsherlock.com/podcast

 

The Nutcracker - Royal Opera House

“The House of Christmas” by G.K. Chesterton

Sermons for Christmas and Epiphany by St. Augustine

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Graham

By the Shores of Silver Lake by Laura Ingalls Wilder

What’s Wrong with the World by G.K. Chesterton

Adela Cathcart by George MacDonald

“A Letter About Christmas” by Ronald Knox

“Preface to Paradise Lost” by C.S. Lewis

All Things Considered by G.K. Chesterton

 

What We’re Enjoying at the Moment

Phoebe: The Princess and the Goblin by George MacDonald

Rachel: Jesus of Nazareth: The Infancy Narratives by Pope Benedict XVI

 

“A classic is a book that has never finished saying what it has to say.” - Italo Calvino

In this episode Rachel and Phoebe are back to discuss Classic literature, what is it and why does it matter? We take a look at our own reading journeys and our hopes to try to become “well-read”, as well as a look at what Classic literature means to us, the question of whether all reading is good reading, and the tips and tricks that have helped us tackle bigger and more imposing books.

 

We’d love to hear your own experiences and favourite classics, as well as any feedback about what the classics mean to you, and what books you think should be included.

 

Music: Ashton Manor by Kevin MacLeod

Hosts: Rachel Sherlock, Phoebe Watson

Follow me on social media: @seekingwatson

Follow the podcast on Instagram: @riskingenchantmentpodcast

Find out more at www.rachelsherlock.com

Sign up for our email list at www.rachelsherlock.com/podcast

 

Works Mentioned

Why Read the Classics by Italo Calvino

“On the Reading of Old Books” by C.S. Lewis

84 Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff

The Collected Letters of CS Lewis, volume III: Narnia, Cambridge, and Joy 1950-1963 

The Four Loves by C.S. Lewis

“Little Gidding” by T.S. Eliot

“The need for more Catholic authors” by Niall Gooch

Slightly Foxed Quartley Magazine

“End of audiobook snobbery as scientists find reading and listening activates the same parts of the brain”

 

What We’re Enjoying at the Moment

Phoebe: Wolfwalkers (2020) (Listen to our episode about Cartoon Saloon’s film’s here)

Rachel: Journals and Magazine - Slightly Foxed, The Lamp, Leaven, Country Living Magazine

Who will remember, passing through this Gate,

the unheroic dead who fed the guns?

Who shall absolve the foulness of their fate,-

Those doomed, conscripted, unvictorious ones?"

Siegfried Sassoon, 'On Passing The New Menin Gate'

November has for many centuries held a place for Catholics as the Month of the Dead, a time to reflect and pray for the departed. In the last century it has also become the month of commemorating The First World War as well as soldiers and veterans more broadly. In this episode of Risking Enchantment, Greg Daly joins us to discuss The Great War, how we remember it, how we commemorate it, and the complexities surrounding these commemorations.

We discuss the prevalence of poppies in Remembrance services, where that tradition comes from and why there is more to commemoration than paper flowers. We look at the experiences of those on the Western Front in the First World War and the soldier’s own complex feelings about topics such as heroism, morality and commemoration. Finally we also touch on the importance of incorporating their Christian faith into our remembrance of them.

Music: Ashton Manor by Kevin MacLeod

Hosts: Rachel Sherlock, Greg Daly

Follow me on social media: @seekingwatson

Follow the podcast on Instagram: @riskingenchantmentpodcast

Follow Greg on social media: @GregDalyIC, @thirstygargoyle 

http://thethirstygargoyle.blogspot.com/

 

Find out more at www.rachelsherlock.com

Find out more about Leaven Magazine at https://leavenmagazine.ie/

Works Mentioned

“Why has Remembrance become weird?” by Niall Gooch

 “The Future of Memory: Remembrance In Years To Come” by Niall Gooch

“In Flander’s Field” by John McCrae

“We Shall Keep the Faith” by Moina Michael

“On Passing the New Menin Gate” by Siegfried Sassoon

Blueprint for Armageddon - Hardcore History, podcast by Dan Carlin

They Shall Not Grow Old, dir. Peter Jackson

The Two Towers by J.R.R. Tolkien

Now It Can Be Told by Philip Gibbs

 

What we’re enjoying at the moment:

Greg: Fraiser, Purgatorio, and Hell Boy Mark Minola

Rachel: 

O Brother Where Art Thou, 

The Hound of Death, by Agatha Christie, audiobook read by Christopher Lee

"I looked at her, with my mind full of that other lovely face which had so ominously recalled her to my memory on the terrace by moonlight. I had seen Anne Catherick's likeness in Miss Fairlie. I now saw Miss Fairlie's likeness in Anne Catherick."

- Wilkie Collins, The Woman in White

 

We are joined for this episode of Risking Enchantment by Catholic author Eleanor Bourg Nicholson. Eleanor has recently published two Gothic novels, A Bloody Habit (2018) and Brother Wolf (2021). She joins us to talk about the Gothic genre, and why it's both relevant and interesting to Catholic writers and readers. We also delve into the theme of gothic doubles, a theme powerfully explored in many of the classic novels of the genre including Dracula, Frankenstein and The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.

We also look at how the trope is explored in Sensation fiction, a genre adjacent to Gothic fiction, in particular in the novel The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins. While Gothic fiction has the source of its uncanny doubling in the preternatural and phantasmagorical, Sensation fiction looks to the find the horror in the real societal problems found in the Victorian Age. Where the former genre examines how find ourselves reflected in the falleness of literal monsters, the latter genre examines how we find ourselves reflected in the villany and duplicity of our society.

 

Hosts: Rachel Sherlock, Eleanor Bourg Nicholson

Follow Rachel on social media: @seekingwatson

Follow Eleanor on Facebook here.

Follow the podcast on Instagram: @riskingenchantmentpodcast

Find out more at www.rachelsherlock.com

Sign up for our email list at www.rachelsherlock.com/podcast

 

Buy A Bloody Habit by Eleanor Bourg Nicholson here.

Buy Brother Wolf by Eleanor Bourg Nicholson here.

Find out more about Eleanor Bourg Nicholson's work with Homeschool Connections here.

Related Risking Enchantment Episodes:

Dracula: The Presence of Evil and the Power of Sacramentals

Monsters and Morality in Romanticism

 

Works Mentioned:

A Bloody Habit by Eleanor Bourg Nicholson

Brother Wolf by Eleanor Bourg Nicholson

The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins

The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins

Dracula by Bram Stoker

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson

The Victorian Age in Literature by G.K. Chesterton

 

What We're Enjoying at the Moment:

Eleanor: The Lord of the Rings on Audiobook

Rachel: The Ladies of Grace Adieu by Susanna Clarke

 

 

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