G.K. Chesterton, London and Modernity

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2014-01-30
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
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G. K. Chesterton, London and Modernity is the first book to explore the persistent theme of the city in Chesterton's writing. Situating him in relation to both Victorian and Modernist literary paradigms, the book explores a range of theoretical and methodological approaches to address the way his imaginative investments and political interventions conceive urban modernity and the central figure of London. While Chesterton's work has often been valued for its wit and whimsy, this book argues that he is also a distinctive urban commentator, whose sophistication has been underappreciated in comparison to more canonical contemporaries. With chapters written by leading scholars in the field of 20th-century literature, the book also provides fresh readings and suggests new contexts for central texts such as The Man Who Was Thursday, The Napoleon of Notting Hill and the Father Brown stories. It also discusses lesser-known works, such as Manalive and The Resurrection of Rome, drawing out their significance for scholars interested in urban representation and practice in the first three decades of the 20th century.

Author Biography

Matthew Beaumont is Senior Lecturer in English, University College London, UK. His previous books include The Task of the Critic: Terry Eagleton in Dialogue.

Matthew Ingleby is a Teaching Fellow at University College London, UK.

Table of Contents

Introduction, Matthew Beaumont and Matthew Ingleby \ 1. "Dull Would He Be of Soul": Why Chesterton Loved London, Michael Hurley \ 2. Chesterton's London(s): Singular or Plural? Lynne Hapgood \ 3. Undecidable Chesterton: Being and the City, Julian Wolfreys \ 4. Estranging the Everyday: Chesterton's Urban Modernism, Colin Cavendish Jones \ 5. Puck in Pimlico: Urban Recreation in the Father Brown Stories, Michael Shallcross \ 6. Signs Taken for Wonders: Adverts and Sacraments in Chesterton's London, Mark Knight \ 7. Distributism and the City, Matthew Taunton \ 8. Rifling Satan's Fold: Chesterton and the Romance of Burglary, Matthew Ingleby \ 9. Queer Trades: Homosociality and the City in G.K. Chesterton, Merrick Burrow \ 10. The Knight-Errant in the Street: Chesterton, Childe Roland and the City, Matthew Beaumont \ 11. Looking for London in London: Chesterton, Machen and the Invisible City, Nick Freeman \ Bibliography \ Index.

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