Something to Chew On: Rethinking G.K. Chesterton


  • Crystal Downing Marion E. Wade Center, Wheaton College


In his Introduction to G.K. Chesterton (2006), Harold Bloom concludes that "Chesterton cannot be cleansed of his Facist leanings." Crystal Downing argues in her review essay that Michael Shallcross's 2018 book, Rethinking G.K. Chesterton and Literary Modernism: Parody, Performance, and Popular Culture, allows scholars to at least "take issue" with Bloom's conclusion. Downing argues that Shallcross offers fans of Chesterton something to chew on by examining Chesterton in light of the prominent literary modernists such as Ezra Pound, Wyndham Lewis, and T.S. Eliot.

Author Biography

Crystal Downing, Marion E. Wade Center, Wheaton College

Crystal Downing (Ph.D., University of California, Santa Barbara) is the Co-Director of the Marion E. Wade Center and co-holder of the Marion E. Wade Chair of Christian Thought at Wheaton College, IL: a position she shares with her husband, David C. Downing. She previously served as Distinguished Professor of English and Film Studies at Messiah College in Pennsylvania. Crystal is the author of several books on the relationship between faith and culture, such as Salvation from Cinema: The Medium Is the Message (Routledge, 2016) and Writing Performances: The Stages of Dorothy L. Sayers (Palgrave, 2004). Crystal has published nearly eighty essays on topics ranging from the Amish to Jane Austen, including essays in VII such as “The Orthodoxology of Dorothy L. Sayers” in Volume 22 (2005) and a review essay on “Feminist Nay-Sayers: Are Women Human?” in Volume 24 (2007).






Review Essays