complete parliamentarisation, rebuilding of Government in absolute agreement with a closely united Reichstag Majority and the - Ogden as Editor and Polymath 69 - decisive, responsible participation of all the Majority Parties, including the Social Democrats, in this new government.The parties of the Right, implicated in the ruin of the state, were to be uncompromisingly excluded. But the Cambridge Magazine did not bring out the double argument used by the Frankfurter Zeitung that, while the new parliamentary system of government would accomplish the “political modernisation of Germany”, this strength of the German State was the only hope of countering the military successes of the Entente powers. The ambivalence in the Majority Social Democratic press was as marked, and expressed more forthrightly. Vorwarts emphasised the need to defend German frontiers to the bitter end, if an armistice on terms tolerable to Germany was not granted:
The resistance which our army is making in the field is no longer in any way a stand against world democracy, only against.. . the foreign imperialists, and so long as these are howling to have Germany smashed, the resistance must not slacken. (6 October 1918).Nevertheless, the Cambridge Magazine was more concerned with the significance of democratic change in Germany because it seemed to create an opportunity to change the basis of international relations. Ample scope was therefore provided for the expression of German views about the nature of political change and the desire for “Peace by Justice”. The Frankfurter Zeitung asked : “Will the realisation [of political change] be complete enough to make the Entente peoples as strong against their demagogues . . . as were the German people against theirs ?” (7 October). The Cambridge Magazine issue of 2 November 1918 began with a long quotation from the Frankfurter Zeitung of 8 October which stressed that “the great change in Germany is not understood abroad” and expressed concern about the Entente attitude that the changes might be merely a maneuver or screen “behind which reaction awaits better times, or, as The Times writes... ‘When the devil was sick, the devil a saint would be.”’
The Welt has always been consistent in pushing for out and out democratic reform, and adopted a more sceptical attitude than any other Radical paper when installments of reform were granted. Thus it was dissatisfied with the conditions on which the Social Democrat Majority consented to enter Prince Max's Government. On 14 October it wrote : “Is it surprising that Wilson considers German policy deceitful ? That he demands guarantees that German deeds will correspond to German words ? That he wants to found his lasting peace and his League of Nations not on a ‘scrap of paper’ issued by a German Government (old style), but on an agreement with a democratic Parliamentary Germany ?”
they condemned the blind confidence in the Army Command which creates “an Auxiliary Government whose activities are even more deleterious now than under the old regime.” The bombardment [by the army] of the Castle [held by the “Red” guards] and the unlimited powers given that night to the War Office by Ebert and Scheidemann have now made the resignation of the Independent [sic] inevitable.The same issue noted the founding of the Communist Party, and the formation of a “People's Guard” directly under the orders of the Government. Brief reports on the unrest in the Ruhr district, upper Silesia, Posen, and south Germany were included. The 15 February issue provided day-by-day coverage of the civil war which raged in January, including reports of fighting in Leipzig, Berlin and Bavaria. The murder of Karl Liebknecht and Rosa Luxemburg, and subsequent protests, also appear. A later issue continued with the story to 6 February, when the Weimar Constituent Assembly opened with the Majority Social Democratic Party in a dominant position.
Pandora's box has been opened; a new Balkans has been created in the very heart of Europe. . . . Each one tries by force of arms to deprive the others of territory, only the Germans and Magyars renounce all policy of conquest. They alone appeal to right and the Peace Conference. . . .The Cambridge Magazine presented considerable information about these various antagonisms, including data on the political changes in Austria and in Hungary, the Polish-German dispute, Entente intervention in the Russian civil war, the problems of Alsace-Lorraine and Bohemia, the colonial rivalries of France and Britain, and currents of opinion I. the United States. The close attention of the editors to relevant detail is constantly evident. They were, for example, well aware of the extent to which the right wing in Germany blamed the “revolution” and democratic rule for the successive “humiliations” imposed on Germany (11 January 1919), and had some perception of a “budding revanche” patriotism, which was analysed in Vorwärts as early as 14 October 1919. It may be assumed that their view was in accordance with the Vorwarts position that only a “peace of justice” could avert such a development, and that a peace “dictated by force” could conceivably “make a revanche patriot out of even a Social Democrat”.
The Czechs want to take German Bohemia, Silesia and Moravia from the Germans; the Left Bank of the Danube . . . from the Magyars. . . . The Poles want Upper Silesia, the Ruthenes . . . the Romanians all Transylvania. . . . The Serbs and Romanians the mainly Swabian Banat, the Croats likewise want the Magyar-German Mur “Island” . . . . the Italians the whole of Southern Tyrol with the most German of all towns, Bozen and Meran. . . . (12 January 1919).
Our invaded lands are frightfully wasted, their population ill, anaemic, our military losses are enormous . . . . The return of Alsace-Lorraine will not be sufficient to make up the heavy deficit. ... No country, not even conquered Germany, is in so painful a situation as “victorious” France. For Germany has a more than plenteous population, and further, does not believe herself beaten. . . . What guarantees will France find in the peace treaty, against an ever-formidable Germany ?Based on similar considerations, the attitude of Figaro (18 January 1919) was angry. It saw a threat of renewed hostilities in the tone of a German protest:
A government which, after the untold tyrannies of the German army, the violation of all rights ... dares to speak in such a tone, such a government thinks itself strong, or capable, anyhow of soon becoming so. It has vanquished its internal enemies and begins to dream of revanche. . . . The Ebert-Hindenburg government . . . by its protest, tries to establish a right in the future not to accept the consequences of a defeat, and not to keep its pledges. . . . We should make an irreparable mistake in not seeing the question as Germany sees it for herself. Let us accept her hatred, admit the worth of her threatening attitude and set up between her and ourselves, while we are yet masters of the soil, a barrier that she cannot cross.The Independent Socialist Karl Kautsky, who had broken with the party in 1917 in order to campaign unhampered against the war, understood French fears. In an article in Freiheit on 24 April 1919 which was widely quoted in the French and German press, he took a position which was summarised as follows:
Kautsky reminds his readers that Germany owes serious reparations and guarantees to France. She must provide machinery, workers and coal for the work of restoration. He maintains that Scheidemann’s Government, by not publishing the documents relating to the origin of the war, has deserved the distrust of the French people. “In sheltering the old regime, it damages the German people and creates the impression that the new Germany is no more to be trusted than the old.” The peace terms that are to be imposed on Germany will probably bear little resemblance to Wilson's terms. But however little conducive they seem to reconciliation between the nations they must be signed. . . .That this was not an unreasonable hope appears clearly in the Cambridge Magazine issue of 26 July 1919, which contained a long report on the meeting of the French Socialist National Council. The Council decided to give a formal mandate to its Parliamentary deputies to vote against ratification of the Peace Treaty. The essential division in the French press was that the conservative papers anticipated German bad faith in carrying out the treaty terms and sought for means of imposing these terms, while the Socialists expressed disillusionment with the situation and repudiated the “Bismarckian treaty”.
If Germany does not receive help from the Entente a German form of Bolshevism would bring disintegration and ruin in its train. Therefore Germany must win the confidence of the workers of the Entente and trust in the Internationale to secure the revision of the terms.
|AMERICA :||Wilson on way to peace, Manchester Guardian, November13.|
|ARMENIA :||Republic, Westminster Gazette, November 20.|
|HUNGARY :||Republic, Morning Post, November 15.|
|RUSSIA :||Democratic Reforms, Times, November 21.|
|TURKEY :||Directorate, Times, November 14. Relations with Britain, Morning Post, November 25.|
Since the end of September numerous Dutch papers have expressed conviction as to the genuineness of Germany's democratic evolution and greeted the “first Parliamentary Government” (Oct. 5) . . . Nieuwe Courant (Oct. 3) thinks “the assertion of the Chauvinist Allied press declaring the changes in Germany to be merely for the sake of appearance, are this time even more absurd than on previous occasions.” . . . Handelscblad, Sept. 29, while blaming the timidity and hesitation of the German majority, blames also the injustice of ,the Entente view that democratization represents a “maneuver.” . . . Nieuwe Rotterdamsche Courant Oct. 9, regards the English press as highly unreasonable in its suspicions as to the sincerity of Germany's democratic reforms. Reaction may occasionally lift its head, but “the foundations of modern democracy are laid” (16 November 1918).In the following weeks Swedish and Dutch papers were critical of the armistice conditions and felt that Wilson was moving away from his Fourteen Points under the pressure of his allies. The neutrals insistently questioned whether the democratic idealism of the Entente could overcome the temptations of victory and avoid perpetuating injustices. By November the Cambridge Magazine noted that these anxieties had deepened into pessimism. The attitude to the Paris Conference and to the setting up of the League of Nations was viewed with critical reservation. In February 1919, for example, Nieuwe Rotterdamsche Courant strongly criticised both English and French policies : for them
German hatred does not matter; if only it remains bound to powerlessness. The League of Nations thus becomes a league to keep Germany powerless, and to make the greatest possible use of this condition. . . .. It will be a limited League, and maintain itself through violence. . . . [But] according to Wilson's principles no peace based on violence, however strong this violence may be, can ever be durable.The excerpts from the neutral press helped to expose the attitudes and policies which undermined the search for a peace of understanding and reconciliation. But the honesty of the editors forbade them from selecting and emphasising only those views which corresponded to their own aspirations. The magazine had its definite purposes, but its editors’ intelligence and high conception of political morality excluded any trace of narrow-minded propaganda. Their conviction was that truth and justice were inextricably linked, so that there was no need to distort issues. Ogden himself took pains to make this point explicit. The issue of 11 January 1919 was prepared for the opening of the University's “first term of Peace”, and it began with a message from Sir Harry Johnston, G.C.M.G., K.C.B., “whose services to the Empire and to Science” gave “peculiar weight and appropriateness” to his hearty endorsement of the Cambridge Magazine. Under the banner headline, “What Every Young Man Ought to Know”, Sir Harry addressed himself to the new undergraduates, leaving behind “the larval state of school”:
. . . In their home life or their carefully guarded school life their minds had become accustomed to newspapers or reviews that were only allowed to express one set of opinions, one tendency of thought, one view of religion. The very idea of allowing publicity to diametrically opposed contentions was repellent to these journalists in harness, and still more to the proprietors who drove them with bit and curb.The result of the magazine's balanced approach is that the reader looking back on this work several decades after its appearance gets a powerful impression of the social and political struggles of the time. The aspirations for peace, the fears and resentments, the disillusionments and the hatreds are communicated along with the anxieties and foreboding of possible future wars. The reader of the time, immersed in the unfolding story and following the multiplicity of details — of military advances and retreats, of atrocities, starvation, of peace and disillusionment, of political demands and colonial acquisitions of large-scale social unrest and revolutionary proclamations — with greater involvement, was unlikely to have been less impressed. This is attested by the magazine's steady growth in circulation during the war years; it carried the proud notice, “Largest Circulation of any University Weekly in Great Britain”, and its circulation among members of the University and beyond certainly kept up a level of commercial viability. At the beginning of the 1918—19 term, Ogden expressed confidence in the future of the paper, suggesting that sales were sufficiently high to maintain a margin of profit despite rising printing charges. The 11 January 1919 issue stated in bold type on the front page:
The Cambridge Magazine is quite otherwise. . . . It treats its readers like grown-up persons, able to form sane opinions, wise judgments from the diverse evidence it puts before them.
The Cambridge Magazine has allowed me, for example, who am an Imperialist, a believer in the necessity of State service (conscription), in the futility of pacifism, and the unreality of conscientious objection to self-defence, to express my truculent views in its columns. It has permitted pacifists and conscientious objectors to reply (ineffectively, I think). ...
Above all, the Cambridge Magazine has sought to open our eyes to the opinions of the foreign press on matters that concern our country and our Empire. These opinions are often erroneous, prejudiced, or unduly flattering to our self-esteem. But such as they are they influence millions of men and women. We are no longer an Island State ; we can no longer play the ostrich.
Owing to the rapid expansion of the Cambridge Magazine since the cessation of hostilities, it is no longer advantageous to accept commercial announcements at the old figure of £14 per page. The advertisement rates have therefore been raised to £20 per page.Ogden as Editor and Polymath 79 This is indeed a firm measure of success. It was a remarkable achievement for a journal of dissent and controversy whose aim was to influence educated opinion.
While we express no opinion on the merits of its contents, the fact that the Cambridge Magazine succeeds in appealing also to a wide circle of readers outside the University does not seem to us to have any beating on the question of its University character.A few months later Sir Harry Johnston’s closing shot in the article “What Every Young Man Ought to Know” was : "Long Life to The Cambridge Magazine and a centupled influence for Cambridge University. The two should be indissoluble, the former the expression of the latter." In fact, of course, the Cambridge Magazine had no official connection with the university administration, and had to explicitly deny such status. As Ogden himself wrote:
The only organ which can claim such status is the Cambridge University Reporter, a periodical of which we shall be delighted to supply specimen copies at any time on receipt of sixpence in stamps. Therein the reader will find everything which appertains to the hopes and ambitions of the University as such, of the Vice-Chancellor, of the Council of the Senate, and of the other dignitaries. . . . The Magazine, in other words is precisely on a par with all other University journals past and present . . . but unlike them it has also obtained wide notice outside the University. (12 October 1918)Hostility to the magazine was not abated, and by the beginning of February 1919 Ogden felt obliged to devote the front page to what might aptly be termed a lively defence against what he called “the renewal of the extraordinary campaign of vilification”. The substance of this defence was a letter from Captain H. B. Usher, several times wounded and finally invalided. The letter published under the heading “The New Cambridge” reads in part:
Nothing was more exasperating than to be assured that elderly gentlemen at home would fight to the last drop of our blood; nothing more encouraging than the knowledge that some people like yourself realised what war meant, even if your sympathy sometimes led your conclusion [(sic] we did not share. Nothing hurt us so much as to know that the political ideals we held so dearly . . . were being abandoned at home when they were sweeping all before them at the front. “Liberty of conscience, of thought, of speech, of written word,” we thought we could have these in the safe-keeping even of elderly and weak-bodied Englishmen. We were mistaken, but our gratitude goes now to those who kept the flag flying, not to those who tore it down and spat upon it. . . .A month later there was violence again. A debate between the Cambridge Socialist Society and the Cambridge Independent Labour Party was interrupted by a large crowd of students and officers. Three of the speakers were manhandled, and then an attempt was made to wreck a shop run by the Cambridge Magazine. Among the wry comments on these events printed in the following issue was this from The Herald (National Labour Weekly) : “The attacks .. . upon a Socialist meeting seem to indicate that this university has merely exchanged compulsory Greek for compulsory Toryism.”
We have yet to see your opponents' ideas; some of them have not yet risen much above window smashing and general intolerance.
Oh, Mr. Editor, how good life is ! If you could only know the trouble I have had (even in the columns of The Morning Post) in gleaning psychological material of this quality, proving that men of professed intellectual ability are liable to this complete domination by wild instincts of the herd.The letter exemplifies the cheerful strength of mind and sense of purpose which stamped the Cambridge Magazine and made possible the laborious work of gleaning the foreign press week alter week for the instruction of its readers.
The specimen quoted above has the winning sapience of the roaring buffaloes stampeding with tail erect over the pram
Several of the letters and comments that have been wafted back to me in response to our appeal betray similar instinctive assumptions....
One assumption is that political terrorism is the natural prerogative of loyalty, and per sequitur that any person or persons who presume to utter a protest against such a method must be disloyal and are merely shielding .........
One could summon more respect for this “loyalty” complex in its hunt for sedition or pa~... if it did adhere so universally to the lupine method which the press-gangs introduced so successfully into the Navy.
To be just to the wolf he is not concerned with such things as gallantry and personal prowess. He is obscurely aware that collectively he is a terror, but individually he is a good fellow but none the less lacking....
This letter of course is my own little stunt. Sheer individual joie de vivre. — Yours, etc. ...
|PART A :||INTRODUCTORY||1|
|PART B :||OGDEN AS EDITOR AND POLYMATH||12|
|Cambridge 1909-1919 and its Aftermath P. Sargant Florence||13|
|A Voice of Reason in the First World War Martin and Eva Kolinsky||56|
|"My Friend Ogden" Dora Russell||82|
|Co-Author of the "Meaning of Meaning" I. A. Richards||96|
|An Improbable Friendship Marjory Todd||110|
|Talent Scout and Editor Lord Zuckerman||122|
|PART C :||THE INVENTION OF BASIC ENGLISH||133|
|PART D :||EXAMPLES OF BASIC ENGLISH||177|
|PART E :||C. K. OGDEN AS AUTHOR||187|
|PART F :||C. K. OGDEN : A PLEA FOR REASSESSMENT||187|
|Appendix||-- List of books edited by Ogden||245|