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Chapter 6 - Part 1

The final book in Lewis' theological science fiction Space Trilogy.

Chapter 6 - Part 1

Postby Kanakaberaka » 11 Jan 2010, 18:21

Overview of chapter 6, Fog. The focus of each of the five sections :

1- Mark gives in to the N.I.C.E.

2 - Edgestow is in turmoil due to the N.I.C.E.
- Mark gets help writing his Alcasan rehabiliation piece.
- Hingiest's funeral.

3 - Mark enters the inner circle of the N.I.C.E.

4 - Mark completes his two newspaper editorials before the news happens.

5 - Jane has a dream-vision so terrifying it sends her off to St. Annes.

Synopsis of part 1 : Once again Mark goes to see Deputy Director Wither about having a position at Belbury. Only this time instead of speaking to Wither as a professional offering his services, Mark practically begs Wither for a job. Wither agrees, though only probationally and at a fraction of the salery he originally suggested to Mark. Mark rationalizes that he would have rejected such a puny offer, had he not been married. As Mark leaves Wither's office, "Fairy" Hardcastle is there to ask him if he has begun his work on Alcasan's rehabilitaion.
so it goes...
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Kanakaberaka
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Chapter 6 - Part 1

Postby Kanakaberaka » 11 Jan 2010, 18:58

Hasn't Mark learned yet not to bother the D.D.? Of course he still has no idea about how the N.I.C.E. really operates, and so he feels he must now throw himself at Wither's mercy in order to have some sort of job and not be left out in the cold, literally. The odd this is, it works, at the price of Marks pride. Their conversation begins with Wither being unaware of the form he had Mark fill out previously. But then there is a change in Mark's view of the lackadaisical Wither :
The absentmindedness was there, but the courtliness was gone. ...
He still smiled, but there was something cat-like in the smile; an occasional alteration of the lines about the mouth which even hinted as a snarl. Mark in his hands was as a mouse.


Lewis goes on to mention how Mark was used to being at ease with his fellow scholars, but not at all used to barganing with such a person as Wither. This has me thinking of life in the business world and how different real life is from academia. The Deputy Director is playing hard ball with Mark. Even normal businesses which do not have the evil intentions of the N.I.C.E. have a dog-eat-dog attitude toward potential new hires. Mark should not have been so surprised that he has been forced to "cry uncle". Yet this is just what Wither has been waiting for. Now that Mark's spirit has been broken, Wither is happy to admit him into the fold, probationally of course.
so it goes...
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Kanakaberaka
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Chapter 6 - Part 1

Postby Kanakaberaka » 11 Jan 2010, 19:14

Both Wither and Hardcastle tell Mark that "elasticity" is the key to getting along in the N.I.C.E. By elasticity what they mean is to let oneself be blown about by the wind that comes from the leaders at Belbury. It is the opposite of the virtue of Faith which insists on holding firm to what we know to be true. As the "Fairy" puts it when Mark tells her he still hasn't found out what it is he is supposed to be doing :
"Elasticity,Sonny, elasticity," said Miss Hardcastle. You never will. Your line is to do whatever you're told and above all not to bother the old man."


Which has me wondering; If Mark is not supposed ask Wither's advice, just who is really in charge at Belbury?
so it goes...
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