C. S. Lewis and Clinical Narcissists

C. S. Lewis’s The Great Divorce is about a final split between all things heavenly and all things hellish.

It is told in first person, as an account of a dream. The narrator comes to his senses in a dreary town. The general mood of the inhabitants is quarrelsomeness. Later we learn that this is, of course, hell.

He gets into a conversation with someone who has been there longer, who mentions that he knows two people who journeyed to the house of Napoleon Bonaparte in hell.

“They went up and looked through one of the windows. Napoleon was there all right.”

“What was he doing?”

“Walking up and down— up and down all the time— left-right, left-right— never stopping for a moment. The two chaps watched him for about a year and he never rested. And muttering to himself all the time. ‘It was Soult’s fault. It was Ney’s fault. It was Josephine’s fault. It was the fault of the Russians. It was the fault of the English.’ Like that all the time. Never stopped for a moment. A little, fat man and he looked kind of tired. But he didn’t seem able to stop it.”

Does this remind you of anyone?

Try this:

“They went up and looked through one of the windows. She was there all right.”

“What was she doing?”

“Walking up and down— up and down all the time— left-right, left-right— never stopping for a moment. The two chaps watched her for about a year and she never rested. And muttering to herself all the time. ‘It was Comey’s fault. It was WikiLeaks’s fault. It was Pepe the Frog’s fault. It was the fault of the Russians. It was the fault of misogynists.’ Like that all the time. Never stopped for a moment. A little, fat woman and she looked kind of tired. But she didn’t seem able to stop it.”

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