|Banton, Michael. “Kingsley’s Racial Philosophy,”
Vol. LXXVIII, No. 655 (Jan., 1975): 22-30.
In this short examination of Kingsley's views on race Banton warns
of the danger of presentism, that is interpreting these views in terms
of the perspective and context of a later period. Some of Kingsley's
writings, declares Banton, have been considered with a presentism interpretation
and he himself "has at times been categorized as a racist by authors who
reflect very little before applying this highly elastic contemporary category
to people living in a period when the understanding of the biological nature
of man was very different" (22).
Beer, Gillian. Darwin's Plots: Evolutionary
Narrative in Darwin, George Eliot and Nineteenth-Century Fiction (London:
Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1983).
Beer considers Kingsley's debt to Darwin and the evolutionary theories
in his works, particularly The Water-Babies. The latter novel,
Beer points out, echoes how Darwin's natural order reflects such features
of Victorian society as division of labor, competition, and family structures.
Kingsley also follows to a certain degree Darwin's challenge to Malthusian
theories. Like Darwin, Kingsley disputes Malthus by regarding profusion
and hyper-productivity as good and in his account of the evolutionary process
of the once excluded Tom he challenges Malthusian social theory.
"In its unguarded and unanalytic response to Darwin's ideas and rhetoric,
Kingsley's work represents the first phase of assimilation. He grasped
much of what was fresh in Darwin's ideas while at the same time retaining
a creationist view of experience" (138).
Hawley, John C., S. J. "Charles Kingsley and
the Book of Nature," Anglican and Episcopal History Vol. 61, No.
4 (December 1991): 461-479.
Hawley examines Kingsley as natural theologian and his views on the
“meaning” of nature. He discusses Kingsley’s attempt to bridge the
ever widening gap between the claims of science and religion and to establish
a vocabulary that would be intelligible to and supportive of both fields.
In this respect he provides a comparison of Kingsley’s views on the theological
beliefs of and the search for meaning in Arnold, Huxley, and Darwin.
Kingsley’s aim, according to Hawley, “was to circumvent fears and cynicism,
and to move his readers into a world of scientific endeavor and Christian
cooperation. In choosing the commitment of faith over strict empiricism
he became for many, in an age of increasing dichotomy between the realms
of science and religion, a model of a Christian who hoped that the truths
of both would ultimately coalesce” (479).
Theology; Arnold, Matthew; Huxley;
Henkin, Leo J. Darwinism in the English Novel
1860-1910: The Impact of Evolution on Victorian Fiction (New York:
Russell & Russell, 1963).
For Kingsley the Bible and science were compatible. He welcomed
Darwin’s theories which rendered Nature and all about him more full of
divine significance than ever before. While Kingsley reverenced Nature,
“he reverenced more the will that is above Nature. His reverence
for Nature was not antagonistic, but paid homage to his faith in the supernatural”
Johnston, Arthur. "The Water-Babies: Kingsley's
Debt to Darwin,” English Vol. 12 (Autumn 1959): 215-19.
Johnston reviews the scientific content in a number of Kingsley’s works,
in particular the novels Yeast, Alton Locke, and Two Years
Ago. He considers that the influence of Darwinian thought and
the theory of evolution is particularly evident throughout The Water-Babies.
In fact, “The metamorphosis of Tom into a water-baby is not more wonderful
than the metamorphosis of the Origin of Species into The Water-Babies”
Meadows, A. J. “Kingsley’s Attitude to Science,”
Vol. LXXVIII, No. 655 (January 1975): 15-22.
Meadows declares that Kingsley was unlike many of his religious contemporaries
in his belief that science and even the theories of Darwin actually strengthened
the truths of Christianity. He also states that Kingsley viewed science
as a vehicle for improving society, for example the promotion of public
health. In addition, Meadows writes that Kingsley though an enthusiastic
practitioner of science was still an amateur in a field that was quickly
Rauch, Alan. "The Tailor Transformed: Charles Kingsley's
Locke and the Notion of Change," Studies in the Novel Vol. 25,
No. 2 (Summer 1993): 196-213.
Rauch considers Kingsley's belief that science and religion are compatible
and that the study of the former could only serve to support the teachings
of faith. Both are truth seeking activities. Kingsley also
found suggestive the parallels between transformations in the natural worlds
and transformations in the spiritual spheres. It is a parallel, declares
Rauch, that Kingsley adapted for the character of Alton in Alton Locke.
Kingsley is drawing on the progressive transformation of forms in the natural
world when he depicts the gradual change of Alton from an atheist and political
agitator to a Christian with a much moderated political reform agenda.
Notion of; Darwin; Alton
Locke; Social and Political