A blog dedicated to providing quotes by and posts relating to one of the most influential (and quotable!) authors of the twentieth century, G.K. Chesterton (1874-1936). If you do not know much about GKC, I suggest visiting the webpage of the American Chesterton Society as well as this wonderful Chesterton Facebook Page by a fellow Chestertonian

I also have created a list detailing examples of the influence of Chesterton if you are interested, that I work on from time to time.

(Moreover, for a list of short GKC quotes, I have created one here, citing the sources)

"...Stevenson had found that the secret of life lies in laughter and humility."

-Heretics (1905)

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"The Speaker" Articles

A book I published containing 112 pieces Chesterton wrote for the newspaper "The Speaker" at the beginning of his career.

They are also available for free electronically on another blog of mine here, if you wish to read them that way.




Monday, January 28, 2013

"It cannot limit its limitations any more than its license."

The modern mind is like the eye of a man who is too tired to see the difference between blue and green. It fails in the quality that is truly called distinction; and,being incapable of distinction, it falls back on generalisation. The man, instead of having the sense to say he is tired, says he is emancipated and enlightened and liberal and universal....

...we find it less trouble to let in a jungle of generalisations than to keep watch upon a logical frontier. But this shapeless assimilation is not only found in accepting things in the lump; it is also found in condemning them in the lump. When the same modern mind does begin to be intolerant, it is just as universally intolerant as it was universally tolerant. It sends things in batches to the gallows just as it admitted them in mobs to the sanctuary. It cannot limit its limitations any more than its license....There are...lunatics now having power to lay down the law, who have somehow got it into their heads that any artistic representation of anything wicked must be forbidden as encouraging wickedness. This would obviously be a veto on any tragedy and practically on any tale. But a moment's thought...would show them that this is simply an illogical generalisation from the particular problem of sex. All dignified civilisations conceal sexual things, for the perfectly sensible reason that their mere exhibition does affect the passions. But seeing another man forge a cheque does not make me want to forge a cheque. Seeing the tools for burgling a safe does not arouse an appetite for being a burglar. But the intelligence in question cannot stop itself from stopping anything. It is automatically autocratic; and its very prohibition proceeds in a sort of absence of mind. Indeed, that is the most exact word for it; it is emphatically absence of mind. For the mind exists to make those very distinctions and definitions which these people refuse. They refuse to draw the line anywhere; and drawing a line is the beginning of all philosophy, as it is the beginning of all art. They are the people who are content to say that what is sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander, and are condemned to pass their lives in looking for eggs from the cock as well as the hen.

-January 6, 1923, Illustrated London News

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