Wednesday, March 21, 2018

A thought or two on "Charles Dickens A Critical Study" by G. K. Chesterton

I did , in January, read this

1929 Dodd Mead & Co printing
of the 1906 copyright of
Charles Dickens 
 A Critical Study
 by G. K. Chesterton.

Thumbing through my notebook I see that while I fell short of writing a proper review of it I did jot down a few thoughts.

I was given this book a number of years ago and it has languished on my shelf primarily because I have not read much of  Charles Dickens.

Mr. Chesterton's writing often references
the luminaries of his day and the political social and literary climate of the time. In addition to not knowing much about Dickens, there is all that  I have never learned about England's history, as well as that which I may have once encountered and have now forgotten and yet, I was amazed at how much there was to glean, how much was still available to me in Chesterton's narrative, even when ensconced in specifics for which I had little reference. Though I often couldn't place or affirm many of  Chesterton's allusions and references,  I was, like a bird at picnic, well fed on crumbs.

Take for example this little gem found on page 161:
He could not help falling into that besetting sin or weakness of the modern progressive, the habit of regarding the contemporary questions as the eternal questions and the latest word  as the last....He could not help seeing the remotest peaks lit up by the raging bonfire of his own passionate political crisis." 

~the contemporary questions as the eternal questions and the latest word as the last~  

There is just a big lovely breath in that little phrase, isn't there?  

Here is a link on google's free Ebook site to some pages where Mr. GKC discusses "this thing we call fiction." Peek in around page 83.  The whole book is available there. 

Well I must away...and make some serious preparations for some very special visitors! 
Until next time....


Sharon Wilfong said...

I too have had this book languishing on my shelf and I have not read any G.K. Chesterton for some time. You have encouraged me to blow the dust off this tome and start reading it. Don't you just love Chesterton? He always makes my day.

GretchenJoanna said...

I have the book, too!! Unread, as well, perhaps for the same reasons you mention. But your phrase about a bird at a picnic urges me on.... Thank you for passing on this tasty crumb!

royaleverest said...

Wow. That is some quote. Wall-worthy for certain!