Friday, October 17, 2008

An E-mail from a Concerned Reader to Dale

Dale recently received this email in his box:
Dear Mr. Ahlquist:

On your recommendation I read Orthodoxy. I can not say that I learned much new; however had I read it forty years ago I would have been saved the trouble of earning two doctorates.

Larry V.
This is a real letter.


  1. Does that mean Orthodoxy contains the knowledge of two doctorates? Or does it mean he now realizes he wasted his time on doctorates, and should have taken up art instead....


  2. Since he says he hasn't learned much new, perhaps he means his PhDs were suddenly of less value to him? Or that what he sought in his PhDs, he already knew?

    Or that he wished he were as wise as GKC (who had no doctorates) and so he realizes now that his PhDs did him no good in obtaining wisdom?

  3. Didn't GKC have an honorary doctorate from Notre Dame?

  4. Does Chesterton have any more books like that, Mr. Alquhist?
    I don't think it is at all improbable that Orthodoxy could contain all the important knowledge (as well as the thinking skills) that could come with two doctorates, especially if the two doctorates were from not-so-wonderful institutions.

  5. OFL:
    Since Dale very rarely has time to drop by here, I am going to answer your question.
    I would say that The Everlasting Man is another work of Chesterton's that would provide you with the knowledge of two doctorates (especially if you look up all the references Chesterton makes in that work).


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