Home > Uncategorized > Harold Frederic: War inflicts stifling political conformity

Harold Frederic: War inflicts stifling political conformity

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Anti-war essays, poems, short stories and literary excerpts

American writers on peace and against war

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Harold Frederic
From The Damnation of Theron Ware (1896)

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His boyhood had been spent in those bitter days when social, political, and blood prejudices were fused at white heat in the crucible of war. When he went to the Church Seminary, it was a matter of course that every member of the faculty was a Republican, and that every one of his classmates had come from a Republican household. When, later on, he entered the ministry, the rule was still incredulous of exceptions. One might as well have looked in the Nedahma Conference for a divergence of opinion on the Trinity as for a difference in political conviction. Indeed, even among the laity, Theron could not feel sure that he had ever known a Democrat; that is, at all closely. He understood very little about politics, it is true. If he had been driven into a corner, and forced to attempt an explanation of this tremendous partisan unity in which he had a share, he would probably have first mentioned the War – the last shots of which were fired while he was still in petticoats…

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