Richard Aldington

Death of a Hero

    Dmitry Mokhovje citiraoпре 2 године
    Look after your cock, and your life will look after itself.
    Настя Шевцоваje citiralaпре 5 година
    Death of a Hero is a highly autobiographical work. Like the ironically styled “hero” George Winterbourne, whose life the book recounts, Richard Aldington (1892-1962) was born the son of a bookish provincial English lawyer and his domineering wife. (Aldington once confessed that the fictional Winterbournes represented a “satirical onslaught” on his own family.) The Aldingtons moved early-on from their child’s first home—near the southern naval city of Portsmouth, instead of the story’s Sheffield—eastward to Dover, which was replicated in the novel as the “middling-sized, dreary coast town” of Dullborough.
    Rebelling against the constrictions of Victorian domesticity and schooling, Aldington frequently vanished, as George did, to delight in the “twenty-mile sweeps of undulating Down fringed by the grey-silver sea” which bordered his childhood town. In the process, Richard (he adopted this forename in preference to his original “Edward Godfrey”) became an enthusiastic naturalist and a proudly independent, romantic adversary of the Machine-Age blight already vanquishing what remained of Old England as the Twentieth Century dawned.
    Although Childe Richard was always the budding writer rather than ever contemplating George’s course into painting, the lines taken by his later teens resembled those of his fictional creation and part of him did die in the 1914-18 war as surely as George’s universe “exploded darkly into oblivion”. Yet, whatever the Winterbourne-like oppressiveness of young Aldington’s home life, he did benefit from having highly literate parents, both becoming published authors and the redoubtable Mrs Aldington particularly cultivating book-world connections.
    Thus, when “Rollicking Rick the Railer” (as he later dubbed himself) finally began circulating in London at age 17 after a family move to the capital, he showed the qualities of a literary prodigy. He quickly broke into newspaper print with poems and translations as well as plunging deeper into the Greek and Latin classics with studies at University College. But, again like George Winterbourne, Aldington suffered a truncation of his formal education through his father’s financial misadventures. This prompted a career-defining plunge into the cultural ferment then beginning to grip extramural London.
    Aldington’s role in this revolutionary turbulence immediately preceding the Great War was much more central than the place he allowed Winterbourne, through whom the scene is fictionally satirized in Death of a Hero. The marginal George merely witnesses the verbal antics of emerging avant-garde stars in social mode (the characters lampooned as Shobbe, Bobbe and Tubbe, for instance, being inspired by Ford Madox Ford, D.H. Lawrence and T.S. Eliot respectively).
    The real-life Aldington, by contrast, played a leading editorial role in one key journal of literary radicalism, The Egoist. Moreover, he was sufficiently formidable a poet to merit being dragooned into the much-vaunted Imagist movement by Ezra Pound, self-appointed impresario as well as archetypal practitioner of the new verse. And Aldington, already prolific as both critic and poet, was a signatory to that climactic 1914 declaration of cultural revolt, the Vorticist manifesto. He jibbed, however, at what he deemed to be the excessive partiality of the Vorticists for the Machine Age, formed as he’d been by rural Kent and the pastoral
    Vítek Měřičkaje citiraoпре 3 месеца
    All of which they talked out very fully before they ever lay together. You may say, of course, that this is very wicked and “unnatural”, that if every one acted in this way the human race would soon come to a full stop. I shall not make the obvious retort of “a good job, too,” but merely say that I observe no danger of under-population in Europe. Since the population of England is about three times the amount w
    wildboy228je citiraoпрошле године
    He was a wrecked man, swept along in the swirling cataracts of the War.
    wildboy228je citiraoпрошле године
    He brooded incessantly and saw all things in terms of the bleakest despair – the collapse of his own life, his present situation, the continued retirement of the Allied Armies which seemed to promise an indefinite continuation of the War, his feeling that even if he came out alive he would never be able to rebuild his life.
    wildboy228je citiraoпрошле године
    situation happened to be one which most disastrously fed his “worry” neurosis. A bitterly humorous destiny seemed intentionally to involve him in circumstances which rent his mind to pieces and exhausted his body – unnecessarily.
    wildboy228je citiraoпрошле године
    Murder Considered as One of the Fine Arts.
    wildboy228je citiraoпрошле године
    He felt very uncomfortable, like a death’s-head at a feast. He caught a glimpse of himself in one of the restaurant mirrors, and thought he looked ludicrously solemn and distressed.
    wildboy228je citiraoпрошле године
    An immense effort of imagination was needed to link himself now with himself then. He looked almost with curiosity at his familiar khaki and rifle – so strange that ten years later that boy should be a soldier.
    wildboy228je citiraoпрошле године
    He shuddered, thinking of the showers of bursting metal, flogging and churning the ground, shearing and rending human flesh; the immense concourse of detonations hammering on human nerves.
    wildboy228je citiraoпрошле године
    he had been told there and then that he was discharged from the Army and could go, he wouldn’t have known what to do except to stay there and stare at the poppies and daisies.
    wildboy228je citiraoпрошле године
    His body was rested, but he felt such an apathetic weariness of mind that he would have been glad to die painlessly there
    wildboy228je citiraoпрошле године
    Winterbourne began to feel as if he had made a pact with the Devil, so that other men were always being killed in his stead.
    wildboy228je citiraoпрошле године
    Otherwise he wasn’t solemn at all, always cracking rather pointless jests, and grinning his boyish grin, and hardly ever grousing
    wildboy228je citiraoпрошле године
    Winterbourne had not lingered that ten minutes on the road, he would inevitably have been killed too. He felt very guilty about it.
    wildboy228je citiraoпрошле године
    And he realized with disgust and horror that his nerve was gone.
    wildboy228je citiraoпрошле године
    Winterbourne hesitated. He didn’t want the responsibility; it was contrary to his notion that he ought to stay in the ranks and in the line, take the worst and humblest jobs, share the common fate of common men. But then, he had consented to be a runner. And then, he was sorely tempted. It meant several months in England, it meant seeing Fanny and Elizabeth again, it meant a respite. He was amazed to find that he didn’t want to leave Evans, and suddenly saw that what he had done in the past months had been chiefly done from personal attachment to a rather common and ignorant man of the kind he most despized, the grown-up public-school boy
    wildboy228je citiraoпрошле године
    There’s another chit here somewhere urging us to get two volunteers for Infantry commissions in each Company. Henderson’s going – he’s a stout little tyke. The other volunteers are that filthy cook’s-mate and the sanitary man. Idiotic. I won’t recommend them. But I want you to volunteer. Will you?”
    wildboy228je citiraoпрошле године
    He looked unaltered; he behaved in exactly the same way. But, in fact, he was a little mad. We talk of shell-shock, but who wasn’t shell-shocked, more or less? The change in him was psychological, and showed itself in two ways. He was left with an anxiety complex, a sense of fear he had never experienced, the necessity to use great and greater efforts to force himself to face artillery, anything explosive. Curiously enough, he scarcely minded machine-gun fire, which was really more deadly, and completely disregarded rifle-fire. And he was also left with a profound and cynical discouragement, a shrinking horror of the human race…
    wildboy228je citiraoпрошле године
    He did not know how many days and nights it lasted, lost completely the sequence of events, found great gaps in his conscious memory. He did know that he was profoundly affected by it, that it made a cut in his life and personality.
fb2epub
Prevucite i otpustite datoteke (ne više od 5 odjednom)