Summary Of The Father Of Inklings By George Macdonald

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Widely considered to be the “Father of the Inklings,” George MacDonald’s works are bound to be profound. After all, nobody as inspired as C.S. Lewis or J.R.R. Tolkien could have been intellectually influenced by just anybody. In this particular essay, MacDonald ventures toward defining fairytales. Within that goal, MacDonald identifies and explores two aspects of fairytales he finds crucial: lawfulness and the capacity for open interpretation. The main assertion that MacDonald makes is that fairytales can never be fully defined. They don’t have a nice and simple definition, and those who try to give them one are bound to degrade or simplify some aspects. In order to make the breadth of complexities clear, he draws a comparison between attempting to define fairytales and trying to describe a human being. There are just too many aspects to state, and it’s essentially impossible to fully cover everything in a common definition-like structure without some sort of simplification. Not wanting to do fairytales such an injustice, he makes clear that he will touch on only some of the aspects of fairytales in the remainder of his essay. With the establishment of that point, MacDonald then goes on to explore the concept of lawfulness as a crucial part in fairytales. According to him, fairytales must include a system of laws, for “nothing lawless can show the least reason why it should exist, or could at best have more than an appearance of life” (2). Therefore, if one were to create

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