For Lewis Carroll, a deacon in the Church of England, faith in Christ and belief in a loving God stood at the core of his being, but little has been written about what the church or faith meant to the celebrated author of the Alice books. With Lewis Carroll: Formed by Faith, Charlie Lovett provides the first in-depth study of the religious life of the famous author, whose real name was Charles Lutwidge Dodgson.

By examining Dodgson’s religious education and core beliefs, this book shows how a deep Christian faith undergirded and guided every part of his life and work, from his relationships with children to his renowned writings, his work on logic, even his hobbies of photography and theatre going. The book includes a detailed account of the career of Dodgson’s father—an important figure in the Anglican church and a key influence on his son.

Family records give insight into Charles’s early education, and newly discovered manuscript materials paint a full picture of his religious education at Richmond and Rugby Schools. Lovett finds previously unknown influences in Dodgson’s life, analyzes his habits of preaching and prayer, explores his training for confirmation and ordination, analyzes his reasons for eschewing the priesthood, and concludes with an account of his death and funeral and his logically constructed theology of the afterlife. The book makes use of previously untapped sources and highlights new material, including a previously unknown sermon by Dodgson, the first ever discovered. The result is a major contribution offering new perspectives on this creator of fantastical fiction and the spiritual bedrock that informed his life and imagination.

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