The (Revised) Clinical Imagination: An Unpublished Appendix to 'The Problem of Pain'
Robert Havard was a medical doctor and a little-known Inkling who, at Lewis’s invitation, wrote an appendix to The Problem of Pain. Lewis revised the resulting document extensively before publication. An examination of the unpublished version provides both a window into the workings of the Inklings, and insight into the humility and complexity of Havard's medical practice. This is particularly evident in Havard’s discussion of mental illness: in contrast to the brief and almost flippant tone of the published version, the first draft paints a poignant picture of mental suffering and confesses the limits of the clinician’s knowledge. Sarah O’Dell speculates on the reasons for the far-reaching revisions, exploring the place of mental pain in Lewis’s theodicy, Lewis’s own experience as a caretaker for a man going mad, and instances of madness in Lewis’s fiction.