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 Post subject: Re: The Man who was Thursday
PostPosted: Thu Apr 12, 2018 1:39 pm 
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So how does the ending get interpreted?

I was a bit lost with the man riding on an elephant. So the ending really did me in.

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 Post subject: Re: The Man who was Thursday
PostPosted: Thu Apr 12, 2018 7:48 pm 
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p.falk wrote:
So how does the ending get interpreted?

I was a bit lost with the man riding on an elephant. So the ending really did me in.



Depends on who you ask. A lot of stuff is like that.

I might try, given some time but...

I have a cold.

I have a lot of work on hand currently, for an elderly retired man.

Two books arrived today; one is due in shortly, and 5 more need to be ordered.

I've been studying, reading and collecting Chesterton and works on him for 54 years, and I'm still not sure, in detail.

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 Post subject: Re: The Man who was Thursday
PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 9:56 am 
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p.falk wrote:
So how does the ending get interpreted?

I was a bit lost with the man riding on an elephant. So the ending really did me in.


So here's my crack so far.. Bear with me it might be a bit crude, I've a need to really sit down with The Apocalypse and TMWWT side by side to get a better feel here.

The man on the elephant is represented as Pan at one point, but there's a large hint made that he is God. Especially when the seven look back and realize the actual effect of all the tricks on themselves. And, adding to this is the part where The Man asks if they can "drink from His cup".

Regarding the components on a fly fighting the universe, I got nothing on that so far.

I have the sneaking suspicion that the seven characters are actually seven angels, and possibly that the original anarchist in black is the devil?

Well, that's my ideas so far. Unformed and still gestalt but it's a try.
BTW What's Wrong with the World is absolutely phenomenal! The man has such a clear understanding of human nature.

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 Post subject: Re: The Man who was Thursday
PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 12:14 pm 
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Givi46 wrote:
p.falk wrote:
So how does the ending get interpreted?

I was a bit lost with the man riding on an elephant. So the ending really did me in.


So here's my crack so far.. Bear with me it might be a bit crude, I've a need to really sit down with The Apocalypse and TMWWT side by side to get a better feel here.

The man on the elephant is represented as Pan at one point, but there's a large hint made that he is God. Especially when the seven look back and realize the actual effect of all the tricks on themselves. And, adding to this is the part where The Man asks if they can "drink from His cup".

Regarding the components on a fly fighting the universe, I got nothing on that so far.

I have the sneaking suspicion that the seven characters are actually seven angels, and possibly that the original anarchist in black is the devil?

Well, that's my ideas so far. Unformed and still gestalt but it's a try.
BTW What's Wrong with the World is absolutely phenomenal! The man has such a clear understanding of human nature.


Gestalt is good enough. Or, you can try to get down to the detail of figuring out the notes Sunday tosses. Or you can think, at one level, of Sunday being Nature.

I'll be around in the background. Life is very busy. But I did take 6 reference books off the shelf, for later pursuit.

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 Post subject: Re: The Man who was Thursday
PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:10 pm 
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GKC wrote:
Givi46 wrote:
p.falk wrote:
So how does the ending get interpreted?

I was a bit lost with the man riding on an elephant. So the ending really did me in.


So here's my crack so far.. Bear with me it might be a bit crude, I've a need to really sit down with The Apocalypse and TMWWT side by side to get a better feel here.

The man on the elephant is represented as Pan at one point, but there's a large hint made that he is God. Especially when the seven look back and realize the actual effect of all the tricks on themselves. And, adding to this is the part where The Man asks if they can "drink from His cup".

Regarding the components on a fly fighting the universe, I got nothing on that so far.

I have the sneaking suspicion that the seven characters are actually seven angels, and possibly that the original anarchist in black is the devil?

Well, that's my ideas so far. Unformed and still gestalt but it's a try.
BTW What's Wrong with the World is absolutely phenomenal! The man has such a clear understanding of human nature.


Gestalt is good enough. Or, you can try to get down to the detail of figuring out the notes Sunday tosses. Or you can think, at one level, of Sunday being Nature.

I'll be around in the background. Life is very busy. But I did take 6 reference books off the shelf, for later pursuit.


I will! Something about trouser stretchers :laughhard
I need to take time and go through it piece by piece.

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 Post subject: Re: The Man who was Thursday
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 6:50 am 
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Givi46 wrote:
GKC wrote:
Givi46 wrote:
p.falk wrote:
So how does the ending get interpreted?

I was a bit lost with the man riding on an elephant. So the ending really did me in.


So here's my crack so far.. Bear with me it might be a bit crude, I've a need to really sit down with The Apocalypse and TMWWT side by side to get a better feel here.

The man on the elephant is represented as Pan at one point, but there's a large hint made that he is God. Especially when the seven look back and realize the actual effect of all the tricks on themselves. And, adding to this is the part where The Man asks if they can "drink from His cup".

Regarding the components on a fly fighting the universe, I got nothing on that so far.

I have the sneaking suspicion that the seven characters are actually seven angels, and possibly that the original anarchist in black is the devil?

Well, that's my ideas so far. Unformed and still gestalt but it's a try.
BTW What's Wrong with the World is absolutely phenomenal! The man has such a clear understanding of human nature.


Gestalt is good enough. Or, you can try to get down to the detail of figuring out the notes Sunday tosses. Or you can think, at one level, of Sunday being Nature.

I'll be around in the background. Life is very busy. But I did take 6 reference books off the shelf, for later pursuit.


I will! Something about trouser stretchers :laughhard
I need to take time and go through it piece by piece.


It'll take time for me to get around to reading the range of assertions from the scholarly world, on what it means. Around 8 books down from my Chesterton shelf, to refresh my mind, so far. I've done this before, but it fades. And opinions vary. And my life is full of interesting things right now, on money and legal stuff, and a head cold receding and family obligations, the usual Real Life. But so much so that in my overall reading (not MWWT), I've done less than 50 pages in a 4-5 days. Unheard of.

You can chase the notes if you want to. But it is like a few other things folks wonder about with respect to this. You can get down into the weeds, seeking too fine a grain of explanation. It's a nightmare. Does the herring fly?

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 Post subject: Re: The Man who was Thursday
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 7:01 am 
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First there's agreeing with Doom. Now there's a mention of r--- l---. Truly these are parlous times.

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 Post subject: Re: The Man who was Thursday
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 7:03 am 
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Obi-Wan Kenobi wrote:
First there's agreeing with Doom. Now there's a mention of r--- l---. Truly these are parlous times.




Yeah, but I did disagree with gherkin, somewhere. It was a relief.

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 Post subject: Re: The Man who was Thursday
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 9:22 am 
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I'm against "interpreting" the thing. Just enjoy it. :fyi:

If you want to interpret stuff, go read Orthodoxy instead.

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 Post subject: Re: The Man who was Thursday
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 11:21 am 
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gherkin wrote:
I'm against "interpreting" the thing. Just enjoy it. :fyi:

If you want to interpret stuff, go read Orthodoxy instead.


There's nothing wrong with trying to get arms around what Chesterton was doing and why. For that, his own comments are a start.

Some folks try a two level analysis, as in suggested Fr. Ian Boyd's NOVELS OF G.K. CHESTERTON: A STUDY IN ART AND PROPAGANDA, the higher level being what Chesterton's intent and inspiration was, another being the "spot the reference" and minor sub-theme game. It's a game many can play and may sometimes be right. Could Little Snowdrop be Alice's kitten?

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 Post subject: Re: The Man who was Thursday
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 11:43 am 
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GKC wrote:
I disagree with gherkin.

:cloud9: And all is right with the world.

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 Post subject: Re: The Man who was Thursday
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 11:50 am 
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GKC wrote:
There's nothing wrong with trying to get arms around what Chesterton was doing and why.

"Wrong" is a difficult word: obviously it's not morally wrong. Is it wrong in some other sense? I mean, is there something wrong with my using a pile of books as a doorstop (assuming this won't damage the books)? Surely not.....one assumes, but then what if I get so attached to using my books as a doorstop that I never get around to using them as books? I think part of what Flannery O'Connor is getting at in that little snippet I posted earlier in the thread is that, roughly put, people are so incredibly bad at reading books that they're willing to substitute virtually anything else in place of it. Like, say, "interpreting" books. This demotes the literary work from a literary object--something with its own being as a work of art--and turns it instead into a puzzle to be solved, and which, once solved, can then be set aside, since its work is done. (I'm really just paraphrasing O'Connor in everything I just wrote.)

Now, I admit, as Chesterton himself did, that Chesterton's novels aren't great artworks, and that they really do tend to fall more into the realm of allegory (which is oftentimes really just a puzzle to be solved, like Pilgrim's Progress or something) than into the realm of great story (like, say the Lord of the Rings or A Good Man is Hard to Find). But I still resist trying to decode the works. Sometimes an elephant is just an elephant.

No doubt, I am leaning too far in the "don't interpret" direction. That's precisely because I believe the current pressure is altogether on the side of discarding the artwork as such in favor of pursuing interpretation. In other words, metaphorically speaking, I believe we live in a world where most people treat books as doorstops and have forgotten that they're books. To the extent that's not the case with any particular reader here, then obviously my comments will seem overwrought.

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 Post subject: Re: The Man who was Thursday
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 1:42 pm 
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gherkin wrote:
GKC wrote:
There's nothing wrong with trying to get arms around what Chesterton was doing and why.

"Wrong" is a difficult word: obviously it's not morally wrong. Is it wrong in some other sense? I mean, is there something wrong with my using a pile of books as a doorstop (assuming this won't damage the books)? Surely not.....one assumes, but then what if I get so attached to using my books as a doorstop that I never get around to using them as books? I think part of what Flannery O'Connor is getting at in that little snippet I posted earlier in the thread is that, roughly put, people are so incredibly bad at reading books that they're willing to substitute virtually anything else in place of it. Like, say, "interpreting" books. This demotes the literary work from a literary object--something with its own being as a work of art--and turns it instead into a puzzle to be solved, and which, once solved, can then be set aside, since its work is done. (I'm really just paraphrasing O'Connor in everything I just wrote.)

Now, I admit, as Chesterton himself did, that Chesterton's novels aren't great artworks, and that they really do tend to fall more into the realm of allegory (which is oftentimes really just a puzzle to be solved, like Pilgrim's Progress or something) than into the realm of great story (like, say the Lord of the Rings or A Good Man is Hard to Find). But I still resist trying to decode the works. Sometimes an elephant is just an elephant.

No doubt, I am leaning too far in the "don't interpret" direction. That's precisely because I believe the current pressure is altogether on the side of discarding the artwork as such in favor of pursuing interpretation. In other words, metaphorically speaking, I believe we live in a world where most people treat books as doorstops and have forgotten that they're books. To the extent that's not the case with any particular reader here, then obviously my comments will seem overwrought.


I wouldn't say so ("too far", that is). Nor would I take an "Ars Poetica" approach. A work may be and mean.

Chesterton had a point, in writing MWWT. In Fr.Boyd's analysis, this is just what I think it is. Chesterton's private parable about the depression he felt 1891-1896, and what the social and artistic climate had to do with that. Know nothing of Chesterton's life, or of his comments on the book, and you know nothing of what he was trying to say. Know nothing of some parts of history, and "Lepanto" is nothing more than what one critic I've read called something like "dressing up in gorgeous costume and clashing cymbals loudly". All color and noise. And if the private parable was perhaps a caution for contemporary times, what was that caution? He had a point in writing the distributist novels. Since I know him, I can see that. An exposition of that relationship, in analysis, is not a betrayal of the work as "text", to those who don't. A man wrote these thngs, a man I admire. What does he want me to know.

For all that, I don't enjoy explicating to the granular level something that loses its cohesion when the magnification gets too high. OTOH, I have the ANNOTATED THURSDAY, and a lot of critical expository commentary. I like knowing stuff. And so I know who Martin Tupper was.

I am on Lewis' side, not Leavis', in this. But I do have books stacked up around my reading chair, for use as sort of end tables. I put my cell phone on them. Or the tv remote. Books may be used in a number of way, including fallout shelters. I won't fault you as to how you use yours. Who is this that is pressuring you discard the artwork and worship interpretation? Send them away. Throw a book at them, if needed.

And sometimes (maybe...just maybe...) an elephant is Job's Behemoth. And is gray. As Sunday is gray. And a behemoth.

No, I have no idea where that might be going.

I hope all those who are puzzled by MWWT are at ease now.

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Last edited by GKC on Tue Apr 17, 2018 1:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: The Man who was Thursday
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 1:46 pm 
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Obi-Wan Kenobi wrote:
GKC wrote:
I disagree with gherkin.

:cloud9: And all is right with the world.



Rightly interpreted, of course.

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 Post subject: Re: The Man who was Thursday
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 3:55 pm 
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GKC wrote:
]Who is this that is pressuring you discard the artwork and worship interpretation? Send them away.

Pragmatic modern/contemporary American culture as a whole. Don't worry, I've sent it as far away as I can manage from me (no very, I reckon, but still). I'm urging others to, too. Not to pick on Givi, but this whole thread is an example of what I mean. "Trying to sort out the ending," as though it were something to be figured out.

I don't mind applicability, but allegory is something I cordially dislike in all its forms.

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 Post subject: Re: The Man who was Thursday
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 4:19 pm 
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What if something really is an allegory?

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 Post subject: Re: The Man who was Thursday
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 4:28 pm 
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gherkin wrote:
GKC wrote:
]Who is this that is pressuring you discard the artwork and worship interpretation? Send them away.

Pragmatic modern/contemporary American culture as a whole. Don't worry, I've sent it as far away as I can manage from me (no very, I reckon, but still). I'm urging others to, too. Not to pick on Givi, but this whole thread is an example of what I mean. "Trying to sort out the ending," as though it were something to be figured out.

I don't mind applicability, but allegory is something I cordially dislike in all its forms.


Sounds familiar. Manifestations, even.

But some things can be figured out; can be and mean. I'd like to figure out portions of Tolkien's letter 109 (LETTERS).

I can't figure out all of MWWT. But I like seeing what others make of it. Whether I can make any of that intelligible to anyone is open to question. And I don't have time to do the reading now.

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 Post subject: Re: The Man who was Thursday
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 4:30 pm 
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Obi-Wan Kenobi wrote:
What if something really is an allegory?


Shoot it?

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 Post subject: Re: The Man who was Thursday
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 4:33 pm 
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Obi-Wan Kenobi wrote:
What if something really is an allegory?

Then I cordially don't like it. :fyi:

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 Post subject: Re: The Man who was Thursday
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 4:47 pm 
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Pilgrim's Regress?

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