Aeschliman's extended essay, published in 1983 and reissued in 1998, is certainly one of the finest of the myriad secondary works on C.S. Lewis. It is a surprising work in certain ways. First, the space given to G.K. Chesterton and Samuel Johnson could justly place them in the subtitle of the book. Second, Aeschliman's skill in interweaving the deep connections between the separate chapters-'Common Sense and the Common Man, 'Scientism vs. Sapientia,' 'Scientism: The Current Debate,' 'C.S. Lewis and the Two Cultures,' and 'The Abolition of Man'-should accord him a just share in the respect already owned by his subjects. Third, Aeschliman places Lewis in a long lineage of thinkers-Nietzsche, Leavis, Emerson, Whitehead, Koestler, Arnold, Trilling, Babbit-unlikely allies, who have attacked the scientific materialism at the core of scientism. According to Aeschliman, Lewis's critique emerges as the most effective because of the combination in him of literary and philosophical brilliance with theological awareness and the ability to communicate with the intelligent 'common man.' The Restitution of Man
is as timelessly relevant as the great man it illuminates. 104 pp.
An Eighth Day View:
A trained philosopher and intellectual historian as well as a writer of genius, C. S. Lewis was one of the most lucid, profound, and eloquent critics of the reductive scientific materialism that has helped make the twentieth century so destructive and confused. The Restitution of Man examines the conflict between scientific materialism and the Christian philosophical tradition as it has taken place since the seventeenth century. It examines Lewis's role as inheritor of and spokesman of this tradition and as an articulate opponent of reductive naturalism and "the abolition of man" that materialistic ideologies always entail. In probing the breadth of Lewis's writings, Michael Aeschliman shows why Lewis's apologetic for the Christian view of man is a precious resource for the transmission of human sanity, ethics, and wisdom in an age that has frequently ignored or obliterated all three. This revised edition of Aeschliman's acclaimed study includes a new foreword by George Gilder and a new afterword by the author.