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Till We Have Faces: Chapters 11 & 12 January 9, 2007

Posted by Danielle in Till We Have Faces by C.S. Lewis.
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We are discussing chapters 11 and 12 here. Leave and check out comments below.

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1. Danielle - January 9, 2007

Orual loves and cares for her sister, but we also see in this chapter she feels compelled to have complete control over Psyche. I understand her feeling, being a sometimes controlling older sister myself, but I also kind of hate the way she acts here. She discredits everything Psyche says without question, although internally, she is torn:

” ‘ Stop it, stop it, I tell you! There’s no such thing. you’re pretending. You’re trying to make yourself believe it.’ But I was lying. How did I know whether she really saw invisible thing or spoke in madness? Either way, something hateful and strange had begun . . . ” (pg. 118)

Psyche argues that she couldn’t have lived and be as healthy as she is if her story is not true, but again Orual reponds, ” ‘I don’t want it!’ I cried, putting my face close to hers, threatening her almost, till she drew back before my fierceness. ‘I don’t want it. I hate it. Hate it, hate it, hate it. Do you understand?’ ” (pg. 124) I think her anger is due to feeling such beliefs would put her in the same camp of those myth believing masses, while she identifies more with Fox’s theology.

2. bethany3boys - January 12, 2007

In these chapters I have to say there were parts of Orual I did not like. Her bossing her sister so…but I understood it from her position of not believing. I also thought when she came back and she was discussing the whole incident with Bardia even after she had seen the palace (or was it a trick of the mind) she seemed so full of the need to control that it drove her to an ugly hate and plans of evil for her sister. I cannot imagine wanting to control my sister so much to the point that I thought Death was better for her. Yikes. It is amazing to me because up until this point I have really liked Orual and I have forgotten her ugliness but when her spirit becomes so ugly to her sister I don’t have a problem remembering her physical ugliness. Isn’t that interesting.

3. Michelle - January 12, 2007

Very perceptive of you to notice that Bethany– that you notice her ugliness now. Hmm…

4. Ashleigh - January 15, 2007

Bethany, I have to agree with Michelle. 🙂

Here are a couple thoughts:

In a later chapter, Orual adamently argues that jealously did not drive her to ask Pysche to lit the lamp. However, I think she’s lying to herself. It seems that she is jealous. Not jealous of Pysche’s happiness. But jealous that this happiness could be the result of something other than her love. This seems to influence what she allows herself to believe.

It’s also interesting to note that even after she caught a glimpse of the house, she still would not choose to quiet her doubts and believe. So seeing is not always believing.


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