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17 November 2017
‘”I feel that I must take a hand in politics, and I’m going to join the Labour Party and work in my local division. I don’t only feel that a social and economic change must be made to come, I feel that it is inevitably coming. All this terrible piling up of Fascism and Nationalism, this swing back to the barbarian, is the last struggle of the old world. I think that unless all of us who see this and want the change take a hand, we may be crushed by the weight of the dying, or the struggle may be so bitter that the things worth keeping, liberty, humanity, decency, toleration, art and culture, will go down in the ruin. I hope that in England the change-over will come without violence. That depends on how many of us are willing to accept it and help it on. Especially I feel that this is a time when moderate men ought not to keep out of things. If we do, we can’t complain because the world is slipping away from moderation. It’s so easy to talk about Liberty and Democracy and stand apart from either side doing nothing. We’ve got to preserve Liberty and Democracy by going into things and helping to save them out of the wreck. Anyhow, that’s my personal feeling, so I must go by it’ (p. 286). Don’t concludethat because we have quoted five such political passages National Provincial is a boringly political book. It is a gripping read, oddly enough, and we are proud to be publishing it next autumn. (It’s already available as an e-book but good luck to anyone who wants to plod through its 600 pages on a screen. We recommend waiting for a nice grey edition!)
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