Tag Archives: Chesterton


Chesterton Casts a Spell on Tolkien

My latest piece for the Imaginative Conservative looks at the influence of Chesterton’s essay “The Ethics of Elfland” (chapter four of Orthodoxy) on Tolkien’s philosophy of myth, as expounded in the latter’s famous lecture/essay “On Fairy Stories”:

The great G.K. Chesterton had a huge impact on my embrace of Christian orthodoxy. It would, in fact, be no exaggeration to say that his was the greatest single influence, under grace, on my conversion. I was, therefore, highly gratified to discover, during the research for my book Literary Converts, that Chesterton also had a significant influence on the conversions of many others, including writers such as Maurice Baring, Ronald Knox, and Graham Greene, as well as the actor Sir Alec Guinness. He was also a defining influence on C. S. Lewis, who had discovered Chesterton during World War One whilst recovering in a field hospital in France. A little later, it was Chesterton’s seminal work, The Everlasting Man, which had enabled Lewis to see the Christian outline of history laid out before him in a way that made sense, an epiphany which was a major milestone on Lewis’s journey to Christian conversion.

Read the Rest Here. 

The Uncommon Sense of MJL

The Uncommon Sense of MJL

ChestertonCameraAny of you follow me on facebook or twitter are probably aware that I was at the 34th annual GK Chesterton Conference in San Antonio, TX this past weekend. I was mostly there to work, to promote books and the Catholic Exchange brand but I still got to go out and enjoy the many friends, old and new, who descended upon the historic hotel for some wine, songs, and quotations of Chesterton. In many ways, it was like being at summer camp but for adults. I miss everyone already.

Among the great joys were getting to sit down with the brilliant author of the upcoming The Woman Who Was ChestertonMs. Nancy C. Brown, for a bit of a podcast interview. So take a listen by clicking here, or that big ol’ GKC image to right. That’s a good fellow.

I’ve heard of Nancy’s work and it was a joy to be able to speak with her to learn more about what drives her. I also got to meet fellow writers and editors, so it was an odd lot of rowdy men and women who proclaim the love of Christ while giving you a hug or a clever insult. That part is done and I look forward to next year. Also, my dear reader, I look forward to meeting you there if you’d be so kind as to join us.

The Evangelizing Power of Beauty

The Evangelizing Power of Beauty

This weekend, along with several hundred other people, I shall be travelling to San Antonio, Texas, which is the venue for this year’s annual Chesterton Society conference. I’m speaking on Saturday morning on the topic of Chesterton and Oscar Wilde.

On September 1st, I travel to the Archdiocese of Denver to give a talk, at the invitation of the Archbishop, on the evangelizing power of beauty. In the build-up to this event I was interviewed by the Archdiocesan newspaper. Here’s the link:


image: Moldoviţa Monastery by Nikolai ivanov / Wikimedia Commons