David Calling

The David Pryce-Jones blog.

The Shadow Over Europe


Here’s a prophecy that bears thinking about under the shadow of Islamism, with the Pakistani — and soon Iranian — nuclear weapon now a reality. It’s from Aldous Huxley, one of the most humane men of the last century, with an all-round intelligence that made him responsive to other cultures. In June 1925, he visited Tunisia. After seeing the locals picking and packing the date crop, this is what he wrote to Norman Douglas, of course all in the language of a time when aesthetes like them could still take absolute freedom of expression for granted: “How tremendously European one feels when one has seen these devils in their native muck! And to think that we are busily teaching them all the mechanical arts of peace and war which gave us, in the past, superiority over their numbers. In fifty years time, it seems to me, Europe can’t fail to be wiped out by these monsters.”


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