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That Hideous Strength, the third novel of C.S. Lewis The Space Trilogy, called by its author “a modern fairy-tale for grown-ups”, was written in the end of the Second World War; it is set in some indefinable time “after the war”. Nevertheless, the culture and history of England plays the significant role in the novel, not only as the source of images and storylines, but also as a topic of scientific research inside the author’s world. The characters’ attitude towards this topic is meaningful. The cultural and historical context of the novel is complex: we can see there the legendary history of England (Arthurian tales, Merlin as the legendary person and literary character) and its real history (certain features of English colleges dating back to the Middle Ages, Henry Bracton, the famous lawyer of the 13th century, Cromwell, etc.). Both real and legendary histories intertwine in the world of the novel, sometimes within a single paragraph or a scene, for example when the narrator speaks of his visit to Bragdon Wood (chapter 1, part 3) where a real historical figure (Bracton), imaginary locus (wood) and “the medieval song” of the 14th century made up by Lewis himself are put together, or when Mr. Dimble (chapter 1, part 5) talks about historical origins of Arthurian legends. It makes the world of the novel multidimensional and atemporal.
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