Please, American blowhards: No more analogies to 1938
The 1938 conference between Chamberlain and Hitler is misunderstood. And the blowhards who constantly evoke its memory are dangerous.
In the so-called “global turn” in contemporary historiography, it has not been enough simply to study the way Western powers have affected the rest of the world. The task has also been to show how the rest of the world affected the West. And it has been a matter of applying, even to quite distant historical periods, the controlling metaphor of the digital age: the “network.” Yet a remarkable amount is absent as well.
Yes, you can end a sentence in a preposition
Yes, you can end a sentence in a preposition.
Editor’s Note: We’ll be running the article recommendations of our friends at TNR Reader each afternoon on The Plank, just in time to print out or save for your commute home. Enjoy! If you want to understand Winston Churchill’s defiance, cheekiness, and brilliance, you must turn to his writing. Times Literary Supplement | 11 min (2,767 words) Life at a checkpoint: An exploration of the psychological costs of occupation. Boston Review | 23 min (5,694 words) Another mediocre biography of James Joyce has arrived.
THE ARRIVAL in the United States of Winston Churchill coincides with bad news. In Libya, Rommel, instead of being routed, as we were led to expect a few weeks ago, has put the British tank forces out of action, captured Tobruk without a struggle, and driven his enemies back on the Egyptian border. Submarine sinkings in the Atlantic, and particularly in the western part of it, instead of coming under control as the comfortable predictions of the navy assured us they would, have markedly increased -- as we write, the radio reports nine sinkings in a single day.
IN APRIL 1945, there was a parliamentary by-election in Motherwell, a steel town east of Glasgow and a seemingly safe Labour seat. Since the day almost five years earlier when Winston Churchill formed the great all-party government that waged and won the war, there had been a “party truce.” Special elections had been uncontested among the coalition partners (Tory, Labour, and Liberals), though that didn’t stop independents or downright cranks from running—and sometimes winning.
ONE YOUNG Englishman was exhilarated by the queen’s Diamond Jubilee, as he had been ten years earlier when the Golden Jubilee had celebrated her first half-century on the throne. Then twelve years old, he had written to his mother: “P.S. Remember the Jubilee,” followed by a series of letters begging to be taken to see the great event. They were signed, “Your loving son Winny.” That Golden Jubilee of Queen Victoria, in the summer of 1887, had seen European royalty gather in Westminster Abbey, while across the land, bonfires were lit. In A.E.