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.




Thursday, September 5, 2013

Alexander Solzhenitsyn and GKC

At the moment, I am reading Race with the Devil, the autobiography of Joseph Pearce just recently released. Joseph Pearce, of course, has written a wonderful biography on Chesterton (Wisdom and Innocence) that I would highly recommend, but his own autobiography and story of conversion is a great story in its own right and inspiring testimony to God's grace. Indeed, I have been looking forward to reading this book for some time, and thus far I have not been disappointed. 

All of that is simply a preface to the following excerpt I just came across, which is directly relevant to this blog, and so I wanted to share (as well as encourage you to get his book!)

...in 1998, as I travelled to Russia at his invitation to interview [Alexander Solzhenitsyn], I had no idea why he should have granted me an exclusive interview when he had shunned the advances of western writers much more accomplished and better known. He had a reputation as being reclusive and also of being suspicious of journalists and biographers in general, and western journalists and biographers in particular. I was, therefore, mystified by his acceptance of my wishful letter requesting an interview. When I had written it,  I had only one published biography to my name. Why on earth would he say "yes" to me when he had said "no" to everyone else. As I pondered this question, it seemed that there was only one likely answer. In my letter I had announced my desire to correct the failure of previous biographies [...] to pay due attention to Solzhenitsyn's religious beliefs. Perhaps Solzhenitsyn had agreed with my critical assessment and perhaps he shared my desire that a biography be published that emphasized the spiritual dimension of his life and work. Although this seemed the only logical explanation for Solzhenitsyn's surprising acceptance of my request for an interview, it didn't explain why he should think me capable of writing such a book. Perhaps, I thought, Solzhenitsyn knew and admired G.K. Chesterton, the subject of my first, and at that time only, biography, which I had of course mentioned in my letter. Perhaps Solzhenitsyn had thought that anyone who had written a biography of Chesterton was qualified to write sensibly and seriously on religious matters. Perhaps "Chesterton" was the magic word that earned me the interview. This suspicion was confirmed upon my arrival when Solzhenityn's wife showed me a dozen or so volumes of the Ignatius Press edition of Chesterton's Collected Works. Clearly, Solzhenitsyn not only knew Chesterton's works but was an avid collector of them!

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