For the Society's next meeting, on July 15, members will be treated to a preview version of the talk that Joe Grabowski will be giving at The 37th Annual Chesterton Conference in Orlando, Florida (Aug. 2-4).
The lecture will be on Chesterton and the Danish philosopher Søren Kierkegaard, and try to show how Chesterton studies can benefit from contact with Kierkegaard scholarship in terms of understanding Chesterton's place in the history of philosophy and how Chesterton's worldview - especially as expressed in "The Ethics of Elfland," the fourth chapter in Orthodoxy - can genuinely be seen as a true system and as a truly innovative and important response to foregoing intellectual movements.
As the lecture is intended for a general audience, no background familiarity with Kierkegaard will be assumed or necessary; however, if members are interested, a great resource for getting an overview of Kierkegaard's thought is the entry on him in the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
The Society will gather as usual at 6:30 PM on July 15th for some snacks and socialization, and the lecture will commence at 7:00 PM, with time for questions and socialization to follow. Please RSVP for this meeting below.
Join the Society for our next monthly meeting and discussion on the evening of Sunday, June 10th, when we'll focus on a lesser-read but very fun Chesterton work, his collection of short stories (or, arguably, "composite novel"), The Poet and the Lunatics. focusing on the exploits of a quintessential Chesterton character, Gabriel Gale, cut from the same mold as his priest-detective Father Brown, or the retired-Judge-cum-mystic, Basil Grant (of The Club of Queer Trades). Gale's poetic sensitivity and mystical nature allow him to grasp facts others would miss, embodying a definition Chesterton once quoted of paradox as "Truth standing on her head to attract attention."
The book is available from The American Chesterton Society shop as well as from Amazon.com either in a very affordable trade paperback, used hardcover, or Kindle format. It can also be read online.
Please see below the break for more details or to RSVP.
For the Society's next meeting, on March 18th, we will be reading Chesterton's marvelous biography of "the dumb ox," St. Thomas Aquinas. RSVP for this meeting at the bottom of this post.
You can purchase the book here from the American Chesterton Society.
Since March 18th is also the vigil of the Solemnity of Saint Joseph in the Roman Catholic Church, we are going to participate in a venerable old St. Joseph's Day tradition: The Saint Joseph Table - or, well, our version of it anyway. Click "read more" to see more info about that.
Our reading for our next meeting will be Chesterton's distributist tome, The Outline of Sanity. As Dale Ahlquist explains:
Sanity is about wholeness, completeness. Insanity is about narrowness and brokenness. We live in broken society and it is ruled by two very broken, narrow social philosophies that seem to be at war with one another when they are in fact co-conspirators against the common man: socialism and capitalism, or Hudge and Gudge, to whom we were introduced in What’s Wrong with the World.
We won't beat about the bush: this might be a bit of a controversial topic/meeting. Come prepared perhaps to argue, but - as Chesterton admonishes us - not to merely "quarrel."
Since we read What's Wrong with the World (back in March, 2015), it's long past due that we turn to what is arguably Chesterton's most complete answer to that question. See below the "Read more" break for details on the meeting...
You can read this book by purchasing a copy direct from the publisher, getting a Kindle version from Amazon, or reading it online.
Given how hectic the month of December can be between holidays, we are going to forgo meeting in the last month of 2017 and meet again instead in the New Year. Our first meeting of 2018 will be on Sunday, January 14th.
Since we will be reading in preparation for this meeting during the Christmas holiday season, we will read a very relevant book to the time of year: Appreciations and Criticisms of the Works of Charles Dickens.
If you'd like to read about how timely Chesterton's thoughts on Dickens are for this special season, check out this essay by ACS President, Dale Ahlquist: "G.K. Chesterton, Charles Dickens, and the Joy of Christmas."
To purchase a copy of the book from Amazon, click here and browse through various options and formats.
You can also read the book online, or download a free audiobook version.
We aim to provide fellowship and fun in the Philadelphia area as we gather and honor the personal and literary legacy of G.K. Chesterton.
Links of Interest