Chesterton, Gilbert Keith


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Chesterton, Gilbert Keith

 

Born May 29,1874, in London; died June 14, 1936, in Beaconsfield. English writer and thinker. A major writer of detective literature.

In 1900, Chesterton began contributing regularly to liberal newspapers and magazines. During his life he published collections of poems, essays, and short stories. Chesterton wrote several short-story collections about the priest-detective Father Brown, including The Innocence of Father Brown (1911) and The Incredulity of Father Brown (1926). Chesterton wrote six novels, the best known of which were The Napoleon of Notting Hill (1904; Russian translation The Napoleon From the Suburb, 1925) and The Man Who Was Thursday (1908; Russian translation, 1914); several books of literary criticism; and books of a religious character.

An adherent of Catholic orthodoxy, Chesterton based his social and ethical program on the theology of Thomism. Orthodoxy (1908) was the title of his best known collection of religious and philosophical thought. Chesterton’s utopia depended on the restoration of “merry old England” with its clearly defined hierarchy. The world he created in his books was unusual, romantically transformed. The entertaining plots, eccentricity, and paradoxical judgments in his works made Chesterton popular with broad circles of readers. He strongly influenced Catholic writers and thinkers, as well as authors writing in the detective genre.

WORKS

Tremendous Trifles. London, 1909.
Manalive. London [1912].
The Return of Don Quixote. London, 1927.
The Paradoxes of Mr. Pond. London, 1936.
Autobiography. London, 1936.
In Russian translation:
Klub udivitel’nykh promyslov. Leningrad, 1928.
Rasskazy. Moscow, 1958.
Izbr. rasskazy. Moscow, 1971.
Rasskazy. Moscow, 1974.

REFERENCES

Lunacharskii, A. V. Sobr. soch., vol. 5. Moscow, 1965. Pages 505–07.
Kashkin, I. A. Dlia chitatelia-sovremennika. Moscow, 1968.
Hollis, C. The Mind of Chesterton. London [1970].
Sullivan, J. G. K. Chesterton: A Bibliography. London, 1958.
Sullivan, J. Chesterton Continued: A Bibliographical Supplement. London [1968].

N. L. TRAUBERG