Why is Chesterton so popular and so unpopular?
#21
I agree with those who say that Chesterton's "flaw" is that he's hard to pigeonhole.  The guy wrote so much on such an array of subjects that it's really no wonder that modern lit people can't figure him out.  That plus his obvious religiosity pretty much kills him at the university level, I guess.  It's a shame; you could form a whole series of classes around him.

(09-19-2010, 11:36 AM)kimbaichan Wrote: ...his sense of humor is mainly snarky and not that funny IMO .

The trouble with comedy is that it doesn't really last through the ages well.  Comedy is of the moment, while tragedy is for all time (did Aristotle say that?).  There are exceptions, of course (the immortal Bard is one), but generally it's hard to raise a laugh at a world that is long dead.  Still, Chesterton does make me laugh, though I'm a big fan of snarky humor.

My introduction to Chesterton was his biography of Aquinas.  Then I read *The Man Who Was Thursday* and I was hooked...  ;D

If you're interested in Chesterton, Joseph Pearce's biography of Chesterton is a great read.
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#22
(09-19-2010, 10:16 PM)Pilgrim Wrote: I agree with those who say that Chesterton's "flaw" is that he's hard to pigeonhole.  The guy wrote so much on such an array of subjects that it's really no wonder that modern lit people can't figure him out.  That plus his obvious religiosity pretty much kills him at the university level, I guess.  It's a shame; you could form a whole series of classes around him.

Not only does his faith hinder him being studied at the university level, but the fact that he points out what fools most of them are seals the deal. He not only removes the veneer, he exposes them as naked emperors. Reading the first three chapters of The Everlasting Man will convince anyone of this. It's a real shame how neglected his work is.

Reading Chesterton is not only enlightening and fruitful, it is actually a form of therapy for me in this insane world.
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#23
(09-19-2010, 10:25 PM)Adam Wayne Wrote: Not only does his faith hinder him being studied at the university level, but the fact that he points out what fools most of them are seals the deal. He not only removes the veneer, he exposes them as naked emperors. Reading the first three chapters of The Everlasting Man will convince anyone of this. It's a real shame how neglected his work is.

The Everlasting Man is one of my favorites, too.  As a history teacher, it was nice to see that kind of approach to my discipline. 

There's a Moral Philosophy class at my school that I'm thinking about asking to teach in the next few years.  If I get tapped for it, I'm definitely throwing some GKC in there...

So, what is everyone's favorite work by GKC?  I think mine would probably be his biographies of Francis and Aquinas, with *Heretics* being a close second.
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#24
Do you teach at a university, Pilgrim? I hope you get the course and are able to introduce your students to Chesterton.

My favorites are; The Everlasting Man, The Man Who Was Thursday, What's Wrong with the World, and of course Napolean of Notting Hill. Adam Wayne, my handle, is the main character in Napolean of Notting HIll. 

I have not yet read Heretics, Aquinas, or Francis. But I do plan to get to them one day.
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#25
(09-19-2010, 10:45 PM)Adam Wayne Wrote: Do you teach at a university, Pilgrim? I hope you get the course and are able to introduce your students to Chesterton.

Actually, I teach at a K-12 public charter school.  Moral Philosophy is a graduation requirement there and some other teachers have used Chesterton before in other courses.  I also teach at an onlne university, but just in the history department...  ;D
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#26
(09-19-2010, 10:48 PM)Pilgrim Wrote:
(09-19-2010, 10:45 PM)Adam Wayne Wrote: Do you teach at a university, Pilgrim? I hope you get the course and are able to introduce your students to Chesterton.

Actually, I teach at a K-12 public charter school.  Moral Philosophy is a graduation requirement there and some other teachers have used Chesterton before in other courses.  I also teach at an onlne university, but just in the history department...  ;D

It's always nice to see a man teaching at a K-12 school. Feed them there young 'uns some Chesterton!
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#27
So, what is everyone's favorite work by GKC?  [/quote]

"The Ball and the Cross", though I think because it was one of the very first I read and thus the beginning of my undying devotion!  Also I really enjoy his collections of essays- so many different topics, great quick reads, so hilarious...
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#28
A Chesterton conference is always a geekfest.
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#29
(09-19-2010, 10:56 AM)Resurrexi Wrote: I've always wondered if Chesterton was only popular among Catholics. I've never met a non-Catholic who was fond of him.

Chesterton was actually a part of my public high school curriculum, along with Graham Greene's The Power and the Glory. Also, the first time I read anything by him was in the game Deus Ex. If you don't know, that was a cyberpunk PC game that came out in 2000.
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#30
(09-20-2010, 12:51 AM)The_Harlequin_King Wrote:
(09-19-2010, 10:56 AM)Resurrexi Wrote: I've always wondered if Chesterton was only popular among Catholics. I've never met a non-Catholic who was fond of him.

Chesterton was actually a part of my public high school curriculum, along with Graham Greene's The Power and the Glory. Also, the first time I read anything by him was in the game Deus Ex. If you don't know, that was a cyberpunk PC game that came out in 2000.

That's what I'm talkin' about.
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