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An interesting review by a bright young man, whose career I have followed since he was studying in Prague.

Reader comment on item: Fascism's Legacy: Liberalism

Submitted by Jascha Kessler (United States), Jan 10, 2008 at 23:43

All of this in Jonah's book, as reviewed, is of interest, although I must say it is personally wearisome to me to be informed of matters I studied and wrote about, not publicly, of course, since 1954, when I completed my Dissertation at the University of Michigan, which only the second Ph.D. written on D. H. Lawrence in the USA. That was ASHES OF THE PHOENIX: D. H. Lawrence's Modern Primitivism, a study of a completely neglected major novel, THE PLUMED SERPENT, not yet reprinted in 1953.

Not only the novel, but the politics of Europe as he lived it and wrote about it in fictions as the greatest novelist before WWII in English, except for James Joyce. Lawrence's career from THE RAINBOW to the end describes an arc of working through everything from 1914 in great detail, including the coming of Mussolini, and anticipating Hitlerism before it existed, as Lawrence died in 1930.

All of this labeling and categorizing is vividly enacted from 1912 on in his writings. For a quite brief summary of Lawrence's positions and analyses, I can suggest my essay, published last year, early 2007, online by the California Literary Review: www.calitreview.com. It is titled, "Stemming from...Nowhere?" A reader will see how dreary it can seem to someone like myself who described the whole set of political vicissitudes of the 20th Century and their nature, up until WW II. It is all déjà vu, alas. [Some parts of the Dissertation appeared in journals long ago, and might be googled.]

I never published it as book; but the brief article about DHL and his espousal and prompt abandonment of what he called the "Führerprinzip" after completing that Mexican novel will explain why I have written to comment on Jonah's book as reviewed. Why is American understanding of the totalitarian history so sparse and belated and constantly reinventing the ancient wheels...?

Jascha Kessler

Submitting....

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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