The Road to Huddersfield: A Journey to Five Continents

The Road to Huddersfield: A Journey to Five Continents

The Road to Huddersfield: A Journey to Five Continents

The Road to Huddersfield: A Journey to Five Continents

Excerpt

This book about the World Bank was commissioned by the World Bank, but it is in no sense an advertisement or apologia. I was left entirely free to travel where I liked, and I have been at pains to record every criticism of the Bank that I have ever heard. I was invited to write the book as an engineer might be invited to build a bridge, and every detail of its construction, from the stresses to the sometimes gaudy paintwork, is all mine.

Many people, however, have helped me with the job, and I must particularly thank two members of the Bank's staff. The first is Mr. Harold Graves, the wittiest of critics, who once observed of a particularly wild misstatement in the manuscript that it was "a genuine curiosity, like a whelk with a left-handed spiral." The other is Mr. Eugene Black, toward whom I have neither wish nor need to be sycophantic, but who seems to me an almost perfect patron of what might at a pinch be considered the arts.

Mr. Black has now retired from the presidency of the Bank, and has handed over to Mr. George D. Woods: but his tenure of office was so long, he stamped his personality so strongly upon the institution, and he remains so clearly responsible for its present pattern, that I have preferred to describe it as it was during the last weeks of his presidency, at the beginning of 1963. It was Black's Bank then, and so it must long remain -- if not in the textbooks, at least in the world's memory.

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