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Christianity’s Paradox: Chesterton after Kierkegaard

Peter Murphy


A convert to Catholicism, G.K. Chesterton was a leading intellectual of the British Edwardian age and one of the important social and religious thinkers of the twentieth century. His trademark was paradox. He wrote in defense of the imagination and the corralling of opposites, oppositions, contradictions, and bountiful inconsistencies. The article explores Chesterton’s views on faith, religion, God, Christianity, Islam, modernity, change, and progress. It locates him in a philosophical stream that sees laughter and comedy as a religious disguise, paradox as a creative force, and the imagination as a necessary complement of reason. This is framed by a discussion of Chesterton’s thoughts about the importance of limits and boundaries in defining good actions and good societies.



paradox; laughter; comedy; imagination; faith; reason; Christianity; modernity; limits

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