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Monday, September 24, 2012

I just decided to take the "Bibliography for Beginners" on the American Chesterton Society's website and post links to all of the books on there up to and including 1922 (I stopped there because those published thereafter are under copyright in the US. The one exception to my list is Chesterton's book The Catholic Church and Conversion which I found on EWTN's website, and presumably it would be OK for those in the US to read therefore.) I plan also to expand this list if the opportunity presents itself, but for now I only used what is on the "Bibliography for Beginners"


Greybeards at Play  (1900)
The Wild Knight and Other Poems  (1900)
The Defendant (1901)
Twelve Types (1902)
Robert Browning (1903)
G.F. Watts (1904)
The Napoleon of Notting Hill (1904)
The Club of Queer Trades (1905)
Heretics (1905)
Charles Dickens (1906)
The Man Who Was Thursday (1907)
All Things Considered (1908)
Orthodoxy (1908)
Varied Types (1908)
George Bernard Shaw (1909)
Tremendous Trifles (1909)
The Ball and the Cross (1909)
William Blake (1910)
Alarms and Discursions (1910)
What's Wrong With the World (1910)
The Ballad of the White Horse (1911)
Appreciations and Criticisms of the Works of Charles Dickens (1911)
The Innocence of Father Brown (1911)
A Miscellany of Men (1912)
Manalive (1912)
The Victorian Age in Literature (1913)
Magic (1913)
The Flying Inn (1914)
The Wisdom of Father Brown (1914)
Poems (1915)
Wine, Water, and Song (1915)
The Barbarism of Berlin/The Appetite of Tyranny (1914/1915)
Letters to an Old Garibaldian (1915)
The Crimes of England (1916)
Divorce vs. Democracy (1916)
Temperance and the Great Alliance (1916)
Lord Kitchener (1917)
Utopia of Usurers and Other Essays (1917)
A Short History of England (1917)
How to Help Annexation (1918) [Note: need to scroll down page]
Irish Impressions (1919)
The Superstition of Divorce (1920)
The Uses of Diversity (1920)
The New Jerusalem (1920)
The Ballad of St. Barbara and Other Verses (1922)
Eugenics and Other Evils (1922)
What I Saw in America (1922)
The Man Who Knew Too Much (1922)
The Catholic Church and Conversion (1927)

NOTE: All of the above dates are those given on the ACS's "Bibliography for Beginners"

Thursday, September 20, 2012

"Mr. Chesterton" by G.S. Street

The following is (needless to say) not a writing by Chesterton, but rather a contemporary review about Chesterton that I came across this morning. It is, however, a unique review because that Chesterton singled it out in particular in the first paragraph of the introductory chapter to his masterpiece Orthodoxy as to why Chesterton wrote that book. Given such prominence of the review in inspiring my favorite of Chesterton writings (and indeed, my favorite book of all time outside obvious exceptions such as the Bible), I was delighted to come across the original review, and so have included it below. First, though, let me quote from Orthodoxy where Chesterton references it:
THE only possible excuse for this book is that it is an answer to a challenge. Even a bad shot is dignified when he accepts a duel. When some time ago I published a series of hasty but sincere papers, under the name of "Heretics," several critics for whose intellect I have a warm respect (I may mention specially Mr. G. S. Street) said that it was all very well for me to tell everybody to affirm his cosmic theory, but that I had carefully avoided supporting my precepts with example. "I will begin to worry about my philosophy," said Mr. Street, "when Mr. Chesterton has given us his." It was perhaps an incautious suggestion to make to a person only too ready to write books upon the feeblest provocation. But after all, though Mr. Street has inspired and created this book, he need not read it. If he does read it, he will find that in its pages I have attempted in a vague and personal way, in a set of mental pictures rather than in a series of deductions, to state the philosophy in which I have come to believe. I will not call it my philosophy; for I did not make it. God and humanity made it; and it made me.
Similarly, at the end of his introductory chapter, Chesterton writes:
I add one purely pedantic note which comes, as a note naturally should, at the beginning of the book. These essays are concerned only to discuss the actual fact that the central Christian theology (sufficiently summarized in the Apostles' Creed) is the best root of energy and sound ethics. They are not intended to discuss the very fascinating but quite different question of what is the present seat of authority for the proclamation of that creed. When the word "orthodoxy" is used here it means the Apostles' Creed, as understood by everybody calling himself Christian until a very short time ago and the general historic conduct of those who held such a creed. I have been forced by mere space to confine myself to what I have got from this creed; I do not touch the matter much disputed among modern Christians, of where we ourselves got it. This is not an ecclesiastical treatise but a sort of slovenly autobiography. But if any one wants my opinions about the actual nature of the authority, Mr. G. S. Street has only to throw me another challenge, and I will write him another book.
And now, the review....