Magazine August 1, 2011, Issue

How Big He Is

G. K. Chesterton: A Biography, by Ian Ker (Oxford, 747 pp., $65)

Chesterton wrote that, in a great biography, “the book vanishes and the man remains; not the man who wrote the book, but the man about whom it was written.” In the case of Boswell’s Johnson, the subject “remained” precisely because Boswell was “the first who discovered that in biography the suppression of a man’s faults did not merely wreck truth, but wrecked his virtues.” I suspect Chesterton would have approved of Ian Ker’s new biography of him for these reasons.

There has been no lack of popular books about Chesterton since his death, including a number of decent biographies, particularly those

In This Issue

Articles

Politics & Policy

A Hard Day’s Night

Pella, Iowa — Rep. Thaddeus McCotter’s whimsical presidential campaign is anchored by one key constituency: insomniacs. The Michigan Republican, who launched an improbable White House bid in July, can credit ...
Politics & Policy

Gay Old Party?

It started out as a spectacular year for proponents of what many now call “traditional marriage.”     Earlier this spring, gay-marriage bills went down to unexpected defeat in Rhode Island ...
Politics & Policy

Network of Me

Last week, sitting in an airport waiting for a delayed flight, I spent some time watching the Official News Network of America’s Airports, CNN. Somehow, CNN suits the blandly joyless surroundings ...

Features

Books, Arts & Manners

Politics & Policy

The Niebuhrian Mean

Reinhold Niebuhr, the distinguished theologian and theorist of “Christian realism,” used to be a major intellectual presence in the United States. He was that rarity, a theologian and public intellectual ...

Sections

Politics & Policy

Letters

Remembering WAR I am not sure there is anyone left at NR who will remember me. However, I worked for William Rusher as his secretary from March 1963 until the late ...
Politics & Policy

The Week

‐ In all fairness, he promised he’d stop the seas from rising. He didn’t say anything about the debt ceiling. ‐ The June jobs report was a dark cloud with dark ...
The Bent Pin

Softboiled Speech

There is nothing quite like a letter from an NR reader. Here’s the one that gave me the idea for this column: I note with concern your use of “gay” in ...
Athwart

Wine in the Red

Paul Ryan’s in a restaurant, enjoying a meal with some economists. Perhaps they had some of that delicious Road-to-Surf-and-Turfdom. The meal’s gotten to the stage of satiation where you’re dawdling ...
Politics & Policy

Poetry

  THE MAN ROBBED AND BEATEN AND LEFT FOR DEAD Across the level road I see Somebody. He looks back at me. (And help will come, or help will pass By these outdated wisps of ...

Most Popular

A Few Cracks in the Progressive Wall

The contemporary progressive agenda — of, say, an Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Kamala Harris, Bernie Sanders, or Elizabeth Warren — has rarely appealed to 51 percent of the American electorate. Most polls show opposition to Court packing and the abolition of the Electoral College. Voters don’t seem to like ... Read More

A Few Cracks in the Progressive Wall

The contemporary progressive agenda — of, say, an Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Kamala Harris, Bernie Sanders, or Elizabeth Warren — has rarely appealed to 51 percent of the American electorate. Most polls show opposition to Court packing and the abolition of the Electoral College. Voters don’t seem to like ... Read More

Trump: No

Editor’s Note: The following is one of three essays, each from a different perspective, in the latest edition of National Review on the question of whether to vote for President Trump. The views below reflect those of the individual author, not of the NR editorial board as a whole. The other two essays can be ... Read More

Trump: No

Editor’s Note: The following is one of three essays, each from a different perspective, in the latest edition of National Review on the question of whether to vote for President Trump. The views below reflect those of the individual author, not of the NR editorial board as a whole. The other two essays can be ... Read More

Trump: Yes

Editor’s Note: The following is one of three essays, each from a different perspective, in the latest edition of National Review on the question of whether to vote for President Trump. The views below reflect those of the individual author, not of the NR editorial board as a whole. The other two essays can be ... Read More

Trump: Yes

Editor’s Note: The following is one of three essays, each from a different perspective, in the latest edition of National Review on the question of whether to vote for President Trump. The views below reflect those of the individual author, not of the NR editorial board as a whole. The other two essays can be ... Read More
Elections

Why Hunter?

Hunter Biden, Joe’s younger son, has become a fixture of the 2020 race. Since August 27, 2019, Donald Trump has tweeted about Hunter 59 separate times, making his colorful past one of the Trump campaign’s most important attacks on his rival. For many years, Hunter struggled with serious drug and alcohol ... Read More
Elections

Why Hunter?

Hunter Biden, Joe’s younger son, has become a fixture of the 2020 race. Since August 27, 2019, Donald Trump has tweeted about Hunter 59 separate times, making his colorful past one of the Trump campaign’s most important attacks on his rival. For many years, Hunter struggled with serious drug and alcohol ... Read More