Gilbert Keith Chesterton was one of the greatest English authors ever to live. He wrote many essays and novels. He had much time to do this because he was a large man and could not move around easily. In Gilbert’s essay, “In Lying in Bed” his deep understanding of humanity clearly evident. He speaks informally and rambles like the common speaker does. In my analysis I will describe and explain the central themes of Chesterton’s essay.
The first theme that is expressed in the essay is the brilliance of what one can do while lying in bed. He explains this by giving an example of painting while lying in bed. If you let your mind relax, which one tends to do while lying down, many thoughts will enter into your mind. He expresses this as a positive aspect of lying down in bed. He also writes that you will notice many items which are completely idiotic such as wall paper, that has one particular design that is repeated.
The second theme that he expresses is the hypocrisy of people towards lying in bed. He goes on by explaining his theme by using symbolism. He says that people say that lying in bed is not healthy and is a waste of time but then proceed to lie in bed for the wrong reasons such as beauty. His theme of hypocrisy is essentially true in the world today, parents tell there children to stop lying around and do something productive, and yet they sleep in until twelve or one o’clock on the weekends.
The last theme expressed is the practice of lying in bed for the wrong reasons. People lie in bed for beauty, sloth, and for other scientific reasons. This is an incorrect practice. Unless one is seriously sick, one should lie in bed because he has the urge to relax. What he is trying to say in his theme of the “right reasons to lie in bed” is that one should need no justification or any reason at all to lie in his bed.
I think that the essay is very well written. I agree with all of the themes expressed. The essay has pointed out many ideas to me that I had not really noticed or thought about. I am interested and would like to read more of Chesterton’s works. I do not think that I will ever be able to lie down in my bed again, without thinking about what has been expressed in this essay.