Episode 21 is now available on the website (and through Apple iTunes and other services). In it, I have a wonderful interview with Prof. Devin Brown, author of “Inside Narnia” and “Inside Prince Caspian” about the ideals of knighthood and chivalry inside the writing of CS Lewis. Of course, we talked a lot about Prince Caspian – that being an upcoming summer blockbuster and all!
Most interesting to me was his thoughts on the Order of the Lion and the Order of the Table – the two Narnian orders of chivalry mentioned by Lewis in Prince Caspian. But he also had some interesting views on why Lewis (a combat veteran from the trenches of WWI) saw chivalry as a necessary military principle – and how Lewis’s ideal of chivalry can (and – ahem – should) still be employed in military doctrine today. I don’t think CS Lewis would have had any question about whether or not torture or terrorism should be considered “acceptable” means of winning a war.
Also, I had a great talk with Jennifer Lynn Jordan (who – for some odd reason – I keep trying to call Jennifer Lynn Jones … ) about some very enjoyable graduate-study projects she’s done using sock puppet theater (just like you remember from first grade!) to bring authentic romances of chivalry to modern audiences. You can see versions of Yvain and Aucassin et Nicolette in “sock puppet theater” format on the website!
What’s upcoming? Well, I’m working on a post-event report on the American Sword of Chivalry tournament – an ESPN style sports report about a real jousting tournament. (I’ve even got a locker-room interview with Arne Koets, the winner of the tournament!)
For future productions – I’m hoping to do a report focusing on Monty Python’s take on King Arthur and the Code of Chivalry. Not just “Holy Grail,” but also “The Fisher King” (done by Terry Gilliam – one of the Python alum) and “Spamalot.” I think it might give some interesting insights on how these ancient legends are viewed today.
Also … I’m thinking about doing something about “chivalry in the opera.” Did you know there’s an opera about King Arthur? Not just that, but of course, many of those Wagnerian operas involve Round Table knights and the Grail Quest. Right now, I’m looking for an expert in the field of opera and Arthurian legend. Anyone with any ideas? … feel free to contact me.