Monday, 10 May 2010


Having nearly finished Herbert Read's Green Child, I'm struck by the resonances it has with the recent national ballot, of which you may have heard.

Half of the book describes how, having been mistaken for a political agent, the narrator plans and executes the downfall of a fictitious South American régime and replaces it with a benevolent dictatorship, albeit one guided by highly idealistic moral principles. Here's a passage with which, I would guess, not all politicians of the various hues would agree:
The state must be incorruptible, or, as we might say, armed against sedition. Sedition is only provoked by injustice, but injustice implies not only the failure to administer the laws established for the common good, but also the existence of unimpeachable injustices, chief of which is the inequality of wealth.

Politics is of course not a stranger to works of literary fiction, from Anthony Trollope's epic Palliser chronicles through to, for example, Michael Dobbs' satirical novels, so brilliantly televised in the 1990's. We're very pleased to have re-introduced Mr. Read's classic novel to this genre.


No comments: