Home > Uncategorized > E.M. Forster: Wars spurred on by persistent talk of war, amplified by the gutter press

E.M. Forster: Wars spurred on by persistent talk of war, amplified by the gutter press

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

E.M. Forster: The Imperialist is not what he thinks or seems. He is a destroyer.

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E.M. Forster
From Howards End (1910)

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The remark would be untrue, but of the kind which, if stated often enough, may become true; just as the remark, “England and Germany are bound to fight,” renders war a little more likely each time that it is made, and is therefore made the more readily by the gutter press of either nation…

A hint of the truth broke on him after Sedan, when he saw the dyed mustaches of Napoleon going grey; another when he entered Paris and saw the smashed windows of the Tuileries. Peace came – it was all very immense, one had turned into an Empire – but he knew that some quality had vanished for which not all Alsace-Lorraine could compensate him. Germany a commercial Power, Germany a naval Power, Germany with colonies here and a Forward Policy there, and legitimate aspirations in the other place, might appeal to others, and be fitly served by them; for his own part, he abstained from the fruits of victory…

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