Natural Theology
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).

Nature; Science; Religion; Natural Theology; Arnold, Matthew; Huxley; Darwin.

Manlove, C. N. “Charles Kingsley (1819-75) and The Water-Babies,” in his Modern Fantasy: Five Studies (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1975): 13-54.
Manlove relates this examination of the major themes, theories, and stylistic devices of The Water-Babies to Kingsley's wider views.  He contends that we should be tentative about categorically assigning a specific idea to Kingsley.  The one constant is the protean nature, the multiplicity, the diversity, the volatility, and uncertainty of his thought. Kingsley's many contradictions have "a natural home" in The Water-Babies (17).  Manlove believes that the split in Kingsley's depiction of Tom's character not only lies at the root of the difficulties in The Water-Babies and Kingsley's other works but also mirrors the manifest divisions in Kingsley's own personality and thought, for example the divide between Kingsley the materialist and the mystic, between Kingsley as scientist and Christian. Manlove concludes that "Kingsley was not more of a materialist than a mystic: rather he was each with divided faculties. About the only thing that unites the dualism in himself and his work is his vigour" (53).

The Water-Babies; Dualism in Kingsley; Natural Theology.

Muller, Charles H.  “Spiritual Evolution and Muscular Theology: Lessons from Kingsley’s Natural Theology,” Studies in English Vol. 15 (March 1986): 24-34.
Kingsley’s understanding of the relationship between science and religion is quite straightforward according to Muller.  The natural world for Kingsley everywhere reveals the work of God; everything physical is but a reflection of the Eternal Realities.  The work of the scientist is essentially a glorification of the Creator.  “As a religious thinker, Kingsley was deductive and intuitive in his logic; as a scientific thinker, he was inductive, seeing the infinite in the finite, or maxima in minimis, as exemplified by the wonders of creation in so lowly a creature as the spider-crab.  In seeing the divine mirrored in a pebble or spore, however, he was combining a scientific and religious vision of life –   uniting the function of the microscope and the telescope, as it were” (31).

Science; Religion; Nature; Natural theology; Glaucus.

Paradis, James G.  “Satire and Science in Victorian Culture,” in Bernard Lightman (ed.) Victorian Science in Context (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1997): 143-175.
Paradis points out that though Kingsley was a strong advocate of the scientific efforts of the likes of Lyell, Darwin, and Huxley, he also eagerly sought a post-Darwinian equivalent to natural theology.  Kingsley considered that Victorian science was inadequate in itself as a philosophy of life and caricatured its one-sided scientific naturalist approach in The Water-Babies.

Science; Religion; Natural Theology; The Water-Babies.


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