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67 of 69 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic work on the nature of man and the Man called Christ
Everlasting Man had a decisive role in one of the most important conversions of the this century. C.S. Lewis described reading it in 1925 when he was still an atheist:
Then I read Chesterton's Everlasting Man and for the first time saw the whole Christian outline of history set out in a form that seemed to me to make sense . . . I already thought Chesterton the...
Published on 10 Aug. 1998

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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A great work spoiled by "Wilder Publications" poor-quality publishing
My two-star rating for this book refers not to the great quality of the work, but to the poor quality printing of this 2008 hard-cover "First Edition" by "Wilder Publications".

I have little to add to previous comments and recommendations for Chesterton's "The Everlasting Man", though I would add, as an aside, that you don't have to be a Roman Catholic, or an...
Published on 9 Jun. 2008 by Mr. John R. Bradford


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67 of 69 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic work on the nature of man and the Man called Christ, 10 Aug. 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: Everlasting Man (Paperback)
Everlasting Man had a decisive role in one of the most important conversions of the this century. C.S. Lewis described reading it in 1925 when he was still an atheist:
Then I read Chesterton's Everlasting Man and for the first time saw the whole Christian outline of history set out in a form that seemed to me to make sense . . . I already thought Chesterton the most sensible man alive "apart from his Christianity." Now, I veritably believe, I thought that Christianity itself was very sensible "apart from its Christianity." (Surprised by Joy p.223)
When asked what Christian writers had helped him, Lewis remarked in 1963, six months before he died, "The contemporary book that has helped me the most is Chesterton's The Everlasting Man." (God in the Dock p.260.)
The book has two parts. The first is titled "On the Creature called Man." It uses the available evidence from paleontology, an! cient history, comparative religions, etc. but brings it together in remarkable ways. The questions he asks (and to some extent, answers) are the ones we continue to brood over: How is man different from other animals? Why are there so many religions? How do we make some sense out of our long and tumultuous human history?
The questions raised in the first part receive a more definitive answer in the second: "On the Man called Christ." It is not that Jesus gives a step by step response to each of the queries. Rather he begins by throwing us into an even more perplexing quandary. Chesterton asks what it would really be like to read the Gospel free of all preconceptions. The effect would not be "gentle Jesus, meek and mild," but rather someone who jars our sensibilities. As Chesterton points out, the most honest response might be "stark staring incredulity." Did he really do that? How could he say something so preposterous?
Chesterton's genius ! is to help us face the paradox, the seeming contradiction. ! Really there are only two possible responses to the riddle of the Gospel. Either Jesus is a blashemer (as Caiphas charged) or he is who he claimed to be--and the apostles professed him to be. In that claim Jesus is unique. Mohamet did not suggest equality with Allah. Moses was never placed on a par with Yahweh. Buddha, Zoroaster, Confucius never made assertions of divinity. Those who did were megolomaniacs like Caligula or the unfortunate people we confine to insane asylums. Yet few consider that Jesus was that kind of person. Chesterton, like C.S. Lewis after him, helps us confront the incredible implications of this greatest of all paradoxes.
He then asks the next logical question. Is the Church a continuation of Jesus or a breaking away from him? The first might seem hard to accept, but the second involves even greater difficulties. As a help to making the correct choice, Chesterton asks us to reflect on the analogy of a key. Its truth depends on whether it fits the lock! . You won't get very far analyzing its seemingly odd shape. What you have to is see if it opens the door.
In reflecting on the key (the creed) Chesterton uses what he calls "the witness of the heretics." (a.k.a. dissenters) Each one tried to reshape the key. The church has constantly resisted that. As Chesterton brilliantly illustrates, only if the key retains its shape will it unlock the door.
In the final chapter Chesterton gives one of the most remarkable arguments for the truth of faith: the "five deaths" of the Church. We are not the first ones to live in an age which has concluded the church was moribund, passé. But it has experienced some remarkable resurrections like a phoenix rising from its own ashes. Chesterton analyzes five times when that happened and offers his reflection on what that means for us today.
I say "today" because even tho Everlasting Man was written almost 75 years ago, it addresses many concerns which are stil! l current: evolution, feminism, historicism, cultural relati! vism, economic and social determinism, etc. It is salutary to see that back in the 20's these issues were already "old stuff." TV programs and magazine articles meant to be bold or shocking all of a sudden seem hackneyed.
In addition to its other merits, this book has the value of being immensely entertaining. Not that it is an easy read. In fact it requires a lot of concentration. Chesterton sometimes piles paradox upon paradox in a way that one can feel dazzled and conclude he does not have substance behind his words. But that is a hasty conclusion. To read Chesterton requires a patience which is perhaps more difficult in our age. Yet to read him slowly and meditatively will bring great rewards.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful, eye-opening look at Christianity, 28 Dec. 2009
By 
Denis Jakop (Slovenia) - See all my reviews
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Wow, this book is really something special. Definitely one of those books that change the way you see something or at least makes you understand it a lot more profoundly. Chesterton in his witty and unique way shows us the whole history of mankind. It was a must have book for C.S. Lewis and he was quite selective, so that's saying a lot. I often felt that this is the way Christianity should have been explained to me from the start. Probably the best book for the modern Christian (besides the Bible).
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A great work spoiled by "Wilder Publications" poor-quality publishing, 9 Jun. 2008
By 
Mr. John R. Bradford (GOSPORT, Hampshire United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Everlasting Man (Hardcover)
My two-star rating for this book refers not to the great quality of the work, but to the poor quality printing of this 2008 hard-cover "First Edition" by "Wilder Publications".

I have little to add to previous comments and recommendations for Chesterton's "The Everlasting Man", though I would add, as an aside, that you don't have to be a Roman Catholic, or an Orthodox Christian in order to appreciate its arguments. The common-sense writing is witty and mostly good-humoured, though some youngsters might find the style a little archaic. (C S Lewis, in "Surprised by Joy", describes GKC as a most sensible author, and I certainly agree).

But, looking for a hard-cover version, I bought a recent publication of this work from "Wilder Publications" and now wish I hadn't. I would advise others to avoid it; it has many typographical mistakes and astonishing truncations. For example, most of Chesterton's wonderful (and crucial) introduction has been left out; "h"s have been printed as "b"s where the spell-checker would not notice ("had" becomes "bad", for instance); chapter headings are missing from the tops of pages within the chapter (always annoying); lines of text are too long and awkwardly spaced; punctuation marks improperly placed; in my view, all symptoms of a rather poor standard of publishing.

It is inexcusable, in my opinion, for great works of literature to be marketed in such feeble condition. Whatever happened to proof-reading and quality control?

So I suggest you look elswhere than to "Wilder's" amateurish effort for your copy. Let's hope that the "Second Edition" (if "Wilder" should ever print one) will at least be correct and unabridged.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great book!, 15 Sept. 2013
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This review is from: The Everlasting Man (Paperback)
Chesterton writes in a style that is not easy to read. It takes some time to follow his way of expression.
He is a mastermind. He builds arguments and explains his positions in intricate ways.
This book is very good, but not one that can be read casually, very thought-provoking.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Appalling formatting for a great book, 26 Feb. 2011
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Amazon should force the publisher to pull or resupply this book: it is littered with typos and errors from scanning, and doesn't have a proper table of contents. A disgrace to the Kindle store and to G. K. Chesterton, whose greatest work deserves much better than this.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must for anyone with an interest in the history of humanity and the influence of divinity, 13 Mar. 2014
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This review is from: The Everlasting Man (Paperback)
I know Chesterton is sometimes called the Apostle of Common sense, but he really is. I think this is a fascinating book for anyone with an interest in the meaning of life and how historical events have shaped the world. The dignity of humanity is shown as integral to every age, and Chesterton takes us through the sweep of history to show us what marks us out as being different to very other species on the planet. To find out what this something is, read the book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars GKC The Everlasting Man, an old Friend, 13 Feb. 2013
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Always read and reread with pleasure. Such common sense and such a gift with words. To read just a paragraph is a refreshment.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars inspiring, educational, masterful, 7 Jan. 2015
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Unparalleled. A must for anyone who doubts their faith or is yet to find it. You won't find a more compelling read
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Philosophical Defense of Christianity, 21 Dec. 2014
By 
James Gallen (St. Louis, Missouri, U.S.A.) - See all my reviews
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“The Everlasting Man” is history, philosophy and theology interwoven to tell the story of how Christianity is a unique religion one that has guided man from his pre-Christian state to the modern one in which he more closely understands his world and his place in it.

This book combines historical record with rational thought, all leavened by G. K. Chesterton’s wit. It requires concentration to draw the most from this tome. I think that I missed much of its import for a number of reasons. First I do better with written works and I listened to an audio version. If you are like, me, pick up a book. Second, I can devour history but get much less enjoyment out of philosophy, which is a major constituent of this book.

I recommend this for readers who seek the essence of Christianity that satisfies the longings of peoples’ souls. If you enjoy philosophy and will give it the focus and reflection that it deserves you will uncover a gem. Maybe I will get a book and give it another try.
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19 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb, witty and most importantly True, 11 Feb. 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Everlasting Man (Paperback)
I haven't got all that long, but I am 21 yrs old and a new convert to the Catholic Faith. Reading Chesterton, is the greatest motivation He addresses our yearning for Truth.Chesterton and Belloc are essential reading. This and Orthodoxy are writings of immense genius.
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The Everlasting Man
The Everlasting Man by G. K. Chesterton (Paperback - 29 Sept. 2010)
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