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C.S. Lewis, Christian librarian, librarianship, Christianity, joy, faith journey


In Surprised by Joy C. S. Lewis offers us his account of his conversion to Christianity. Using his experiences of joy as “signposts,” he leads us through his early life up to his conversion at age thirty-one. I reflect on Lewis’s account as a librarian, researcher, and fellow Christian, considering his information world and the people who aided and hindered him on his faith journey. I conclude with some thoughts on his and my own conversion, as both unique yet shared experiences within the Christian tradition.

"Real joy seems to me almost as unlike security or prosperity as it is unlike agony. It jumps under one’s ribs and tickles down one’s back and makes one forget meals and keeps one (delightedly) sleepless o’ nights. It shocks one awake where the other puts one to sleep. My private table is one second of Joy is worth twelve hours of Pleasure."

—C. S. Lewis (1945, quoted in Flood 2014)

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