A War of Individuals: Bloomsbury Attitudes to the Great War

By Jonathan Atkin | Go to book overview

4

Writers at war

Bertrand Russell was just one man largely thinking and acting alone — and therein rests his reputation. But to what extent — whether in private or public — did similar anti-war concerns to those of Russell and the Bloomsbury circle express themselves among the intelligentsia? The bulk of the evidence derives from the letters that sped back and forth between contemporary writers, artists and thinkers, during a time of unexpected conflict — a conflict that provoked much doubt and debate.

In common with Bertrand Russell, E.M. Forster believed the war to be partly due to misdirected destructive energies; forces that could be channelled during times of peace into creative efforts. In a letter to Siegfried Sassoon written as the conflict neared its end, Forster confirmed that 'all vigour these days is misdirected' and that the human race needed time and the opportunity to re-align itself. 1 What of further evidence of similarities of response amongst the wider literary intelligentsia who, though they did not take part in the actual fighting (see Chapter 5), could, as with Bloomsbury and Russell, regard the conflict from a particular aesthetic or humanistic standpoint?

In his letter to Sassoon, E.M. Forster also explained that his other hope for the future, though 'very faint', was for a League of Nations. This was a hope Forster shared both with his frequent correspondent Goldsworthy Lowes Dickinson and with other intellectuals such as the writer and ruralist Edward Carpenter, who wrote publicly on the war throughout its duration. Carpenter's standpoint was derived from his background of mysticism rather than the statistical analysis of Leonard Woolf, for example, who worked slowly on academic reports for the Fabians during 1915 and 1916. 2 Carpenter rushed out books, articles, letters and pamphlets on the war and also found time to produce an autobiography. His 1916 pamphlet Never Again (subtitled 'A Protest and a Warning Addressed to the Peoples of Europe') echoed Clive Bell's Peace at Once of the previous year in arguing that war was 'abhorrent to our common humanity': the longer the war continued, the greater would become the impulses of hate and revenge. Carpenter's focus on destructive impulses mirrored that of Russell; Carpenter cited Russell's Principles of Social Reconstruction in his own Towards Industrial Freedom (1917) and highlighted the creative

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
A War of Individuals: Bloomsbury Attitudes to the Great War
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • A War of Individuals - Bloomsbury Attitudes to the Great War *
  • Contents *
  • Acknowledgements and Abbreviations *
  • Introduction *
  • 1 - `Recognised' Forms of Opposition *
  • 2 - Bloomsbury *
  • 3 - Academics at War — Bertrand Russell and Cambridge *
  • 4 - Writers at War *
  • 5 - Writers in Uniform *
  • 6 - Women and the War *
  • 7 - Obscurer Individuals and Their Themes of Response *
  • 8 - Three Individuals *
  • 9 - Public Commentary on Familiar Themes *
  • Conclusion *
  • Bibliography *
  • Secondary Sources 242
  • Index *
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 250

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.