Analysis of Chapter 1: the Abolition of Man by C. S. Lewis "Men Without Chests"

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The Abolition of Man
By C. S. Lewis
Chapter 1 – Men Without Chests
As one of the most respected authors in the twentieth century, C. S. Lewis wrote many books with educational as well as recreational benefits. In this book, The Abolition of Man, the comparison that is presented is at first somewhat confusing. However, after reflection the reader realizes that symbolism is being used for a condition that C.S. Lewis feels is relevant to the current way that students are being taught.

The confusion is due to the fact that pupils’ language appears to be saying something important or absolute when what they are really saying has to do with their feelings. This is due to the way that students are being taught, which Mr. Lewis considers a huge education problem. The cause of this issue is due to the current assessment regarding value judgments, due to the fact that they have been changing over the last several decades. The point is that the majority of the teachers and textbooks are teaching the children that there is no such thing as objective value because all value judgments are subjective. Mr. Lewis is pointing out that it is unrealistic to reject the fundamental belief system that has always been in place and works with one that is subjective, which means that each and every person can base their values on something different. It seems like a huge step back in time to an unorganized society, because this type of system proves nothing.

In titling the first chapter “Men Without Chests” this means that the typical person who is not willing to refute this teaching lacks courage. This book is about the process that is being used in the undoing of “man” and that society is on the downward slide back into uncivilized times. By adopting these changes people knowingly or unknowingly accept the concept that they are no longer made in God’s image.

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