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"I am a Chesterton fan," but by so stating you will have a hard time evaluating me if that is all you know about me.
Chesterton was a master at advocating for the Catholic Church for decades before he became a catholic. He is best known for his writings but he studied to be an artist. Look for vivid imagery in The Man Who Was Thursday (TMWWT).
You did not need to be either a Christian or Catholic to be a friend of Chesterton's. He counted as one of his best friends George Bernard Shaw and was also friends with H. G. Wells.
Someone wondered in a post here how Chesterton would have fared against Hitchens in a debate; Chesterton debated the intellectual luminaries of his time including the above mentioned Shaw, and Wells, but additionally; Bertrand Russell and Clarence Darrow and was usually considered to have won the debate.
My first exposure to TMWWT was an audio book which I did NOT like in the least. I especially found the chase sequence at the end farcical and juvenile and several major switches in the plot in other places confused me. But, something about the story grabbed me and would not let go so I listened to it again and then read the book. At some point the story gelled for me. I don't wish to spoil any plot elements but I suggest that as you read you focus on the idea of humans as beings struggling between law and free will. The police represent law and order while the anarchists the rebellion often associated with free will. In that sense, all of us are both police and anarchists are we not?
There is much, much more but I cannot suggest it too specifically here without spoiling the fun. I only suggest that you ... well, never mind, we'll get to that.
One final thing, Chesterton was a man of tremendous intellect but equally of gentleness. He was greatly loved by many whom he strongly disagreed with. He can be an example of the civility with which we can and should treat each other during discourse. Personally, my tendency is to be much more Bellocian. What do I mean? Hilaire Belloc was also a close friend of Chesterton's and though much different temperamentally, they were so similar in belief that they were dubbed to be a single animal called the Chesterbelloc. By identifying myself as being Bellocian I suppose that puts me at the tail of the animal.
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