Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Mad Dogs and Englishmen?

Noel Coward, in a letter to his mother during the war:

I am working for the country it-self and the ordinary people that belong to it. If you had been here during some of the bad blitzes and seen what I have seen and if you had been with the Navy as much as I have you would understand better what I mean. The reason that I didn't come back to America was that in this moment of crisis I wanted to be here experiencing what all the people I know and all the millions of people I don't know are experiencing. This is because I happen to be English and Scots and I happen to believe and know that, if I ran away and refused to have anything to do with the War and lived
comfortably in Hollywood, as so many of my actor friends have done, I should be ashamed to the end of my days. The qualities which have made me a success in life are entirely British.... Everything I've ever written could never have been written by anybody but an Englishman.

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