The Screwtape Letters C. S. Lewis

Author Biography:

C. S. Lewis was a writer and Christian supporter. He was born on November 29, 1898, in Belfast, Ireland. He taught at Oxford University and soon became an apologist author and used a line of reasoning to support his Christian faith. He is most recognized for his fiction series The Chronicles of Narnia. All of the books C. S. Lewis wrote were very successful.

Genre, Theme, and Setting

The Screwtape Letter is a Christian apologetic, fiction novel. The time is now. This takes place in Hell and World War II. Each letter he writes is about a week apart. The theme of this entire book is temptation. There are two demons that try to destroy a man (the patient) and get him as far away from God as possible.

Brief Summary

Screwtape is a senior devil and woodworm is his nephew and he is a younger demon. Screwtape writes 31 letters to his nephew and has been assigned to darken the life of a human known as a "patient". The letters he writes is advice on how to influence the patient.


Screwtape is a very accomplished devil who writes to his nephew, giving abundant advice on the best ways to deprave human beings. He has successfully corrupted millions of lives, convincing them to embrace sin and thereby giving them eternal punishment in Hell. He struggles to understand God's love for mankind. He believes the only goal in life is to compete with others for power and wealth. But towards the end of the novel, he expresses his deep crave of wanting to understand God's love, and accept Christianity.

Woodworm is never actually heard from in the book because we hear about his experiences through Screwtape. He is known as a younger demon who often fails to corrupt the patient. Woodworm doesn't know of the various basic strategies that more acknowledged devils like Screwtape use to take people away from going down the Christian path. He demonstrates himself to be disloyal, unfaithful individual, wanting to report his uncle for conjecture on the nature of God's love.

Conflict and Resolution

Through out the novel is numerous letters Screwtape has written to his nephew, Woodworm, to help temp a young man, the patient, to sin and fall far from God. Screwtape tries to help him on how to prevent the patient from accepting Christianity. He gets him to focus on ugliness and the negative things of his friends and family and tries to ruin the good things in his life. At the end of the book, Screwtape confesses that he is sometimes saddened that he doesn't know what occurs in heaven because devils aren't allowed there. The one thing that sustains him is the comprehension that the devils' realism will ultimately conquer God's love.

Book Evaluation

I loved this book but it was definitely gives you a punch in the gut! It shows you some things you would rather not see, but it also shows how the darkness tries to take our joy away. Lewis forces us to look at the human world through the eyes of a devil. I recommend this book to Christians who aren't afraid of the truth. It is a real eye opener! In a good way though.

Quotes from The Screwtape Letters

"Never having been a human, you don't realize how enslaved they are to the pressure of the ordinary." (2) - This sentence shows the reality of how people get caught up in trying to be like the rest of the world instead of focusing on their Christian walk.

"The Future is, of all things, the thing least like eternity. It is the most temporal part of time--for the Past is frozen and no longer flows, and the Present is all lit up with eternal rays." (163) - C. S. Lewis tells the readers that the past cannot be changed, but you have the opportunity to change your future.

Vocabulary Words

Deprave: make someone immoral or wicked.

Corrupt: cause to act dishonestly in return for personal gain.

Disloyal: an action demonstrating a lack of loyalty.

Conjecture: an opinion or conclusion formed on the basis of unfinished information.

Eternity: infinite or unending time.


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