Orthodoxy

Guide: Joseph Pearce

Notes

1:15

  • Where to start with Chesterton
  • Chesterton’s influence on Joseph Pearce’s conversion

2:35

  • Chesterton’s early life
  • Slade School of Art, decadence and pessimism

5:30

  • At St Paul’s School
  • Sin and solipsism
  • Optimism and gratitude

8:10

  • Chesterton working at a publishers
  • The presence of St Francis of Assisi in his life, even before he became a Christian
  • ‘The Diabolist’ an essay describing an encounter with a figure like Dorian Gray
  • Chesterton’s emergence as a household name

10:44

  • Frances Blogg as stabilising influence
  • Coming to embrace Christianity as an idea

13:30

  • Bernard Shaw on Chesterton and Belloc
  • Chesterton as disciple of Belloc in the early days of their relationship
  • Belloc’s seniority
  • Influence of Belloc on Chesterton’s ideas on the nature of European, the French Revolution and Distributism in politics
  • Frances Blogg as stabilising Chesterton and Belloc broadening his horizons

18:27

  • The charge of anti-Semitism
  • Pre-Nazi context
  • Retractions on seeing the rise of Hitler
  • A lack of charity

20:20

  • Father John O’Connor
  • Wisdom and innocence, sanity and sanctity
  • The model for Father Brown

23:00

  • Chesterton and Christianity in print
  • Heretics
  • Via negative
  • Frances as a powerful silence in his life

25:23

  • Coming to write Orthodoxy
  • Parallels with Mere Christianity
  • Heliger geist not zeitgeist
  • A defence of the Apostles’ Creed

27:15

  • Opening of Orthodoxy
  • The man who discovered Brighton
  • Coming home

29:21

  • Poet vs chess player
  • Madness as reason out of control

31:08

  • The world gone awry—relativism, scepticism etc.
  • Reduction to the absurd

32:52

  • The Ethics of Elfland
  • Influence of the chapter on Tolkien and Lewis
  • Distinction between the childlike and the childish
  • Fairy stories are not an escape from reality, but the opposite

36:07

  • Optimism and pessimism as both wrong
  • Paradoxical conjunction
  • The truth of optimism
  • The truth of pessimism
  • Marriage of faith and reason

42:08

  • The effects on society of politics without faith
  • The problem of freedom…anarchy as tyranny
  • City of God and City of Man

46:02

  • Chesterton’s argument for the truth of Christianity
  • Chesterton becoming a Roman Catholic
  • Imago Dei and God laughing
  • Holiness is taking ourselves lightly

52:08

  • The reception of Orthodoxy
  • Change in reputation once he became a public Christian
  • Influence on Ronald Knox and Maurice Baring
  • Lewis and Tolkien’s experiences of reading Chesterton
  • Chesterton’s place in a Catholic revival and a Christian revival more generally

55:39

  • Recommended next steps if you’ve enjoyed Orthodoxy
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