In the 1980s, in Beaumont, a young man named Sid Coser ate his hunger by stealing fruit from the vegetable basket. Louis Strade grew up in the slums of the historic city of Bath and was used to foraging in the gutter. Joseph Sharp of Derbyshire is so poor that he can only “barefoot” and live on “tea dregs and batter”. Coser, Slade and Sharp are just the tip of the iceberg of poor children in late Victorian England. The girls huddled together around scarves, and the boys’ wandering eyes were full of fatigue, showing the living conditions of the urban poor in Victorian times.
Why are these people so poor? Britain is already very rich. At the end of 19th century, great inventions such as asphalt road, harvester, toilet and telegraph completely changed every aspect of daily life. At that time, Britain was almost synonymous with progress and prosperity, but social observers such as Charles Booth and Henry Rowntree found that British workers’ families were increasingly trapped in Gothic nightmare poverty. What happened?
Emma Griffin’s new book Bread Winner aims to explore this issue, which is both meticulous and sincere. Instead of looking for answers from charts or histograms, she chose to directly ask people and “abnormal” people who live in poverty in the richest countries in the world for help. Her original data is 662 life histories, most of which were written in 1970s and 1980s, and kept in local archives or published by small socialist publishing houses. The reason for this choice is not that Griffin thinks that the authors of these memoirs can provide macroeconomic analysis in the late Victorian era, or even that they can hand over clear and complete family accounts. She asked about a series of feelings caused by the family’s economic situation and its composition: how did my father hide the money he earned in his socks; How distressed my mother is to receive a lot of mending work from others; How can a big sister who has just found a full-time job go home and praise her new clothes? All this is not a simple anecdote. Griffin believes that it is this kind of evidence that gives us a glimpse that “economic life has profound humanistic characteristics.”
At first glance, it is not clear how Griffin extracted a coherent pattern from this pile of noise. Each story seems to be independent: some mine in Lancashire, some farm in Cambridge, and some work as tailors in London-the conclusion shows that 20% of memoir writers say that their father’s salary actually started to increase during this period. However, instead of widely improving the family situation, the salary increase has become the first sound of burying family happiness. For example, john murphy recalled that the overtime pay my father received in the 1890s “didn’t bring much benefit to my family”. On the contrary, drinking on weekends and rushing to pay off old debts have become the norm. Joseph Sharp mentioned bitterly that his father’s new income was used to feed his pet dog, and the children didn’t get any benefit.
If the mother can control the situation and get her increasing share of national wealth, the irresponsible father will not completely screw things up. But Griffin has repeatedly found that women’s wages are only nine Niu Yi hairs of men. No matter how many clothes you mend and how many houses you clean, you can’t earn enough, let alone support your family. It is impossible to leave your husband, because it means that the children will be in a difficult situation and your support may be deprived.
Griffin’s point of view is not to demonize working-class men, but to show that the role of “breadwinner” can form a channel to oppress men in a sense, which is similar to those who rely on him. Many memoir writers say that when fathers are under great pressure-the death of their children, work accidents or local economic recession-they will become more and more addicted to alcohol. Griffin is also keenly aware that the memoirist may not care about mentioning his father’s drinking experience, but he will still be ashamed to talk about various changes in public. And those mothers who went to or were sent to shelters, or had illegitimate children with tenants, rarely had the opportunity to share their experiences, let alone the touching stories written by
The US Treasury Department previously announced that the portrait of alexander hamilton on the 10-dollar bill would be replaced by someone else, which triggered a small-scale movement aimed at saving the position of the first treasury secretary in the history of American currency. The recurring theme in the “Save Hamilton” movement is to emphasize Hamilton’s position of abolishing slavery, and some critics who have gone further even regard it as the pioneer of a generation of abolitionists after the founding of the People’s Republic of China. The new york Daily News called him a “staunch abolitionist”, while the Huffington Post praised him for his “resolute” opposition to slavery, which was the main reason for keeping his portrait on the 10-dollar bill. This formulation goes far beyond the scope of amateur explanation. A considerable number of biographers who worship Hamilton will add abolitionists and resolutely oppose slavery to their writing themes.
“Few of the Founding Fathers can compare with Hamilton in the consistency of stance and firmness of abolitionist action,” Ron Chernow wrote in his widely acclaimed review of Federalist Papers. Richard Brookhiser and even the historian Forrest McDonald, who is famous for his rigorous textual research, praised his efforts against slavery in his biography. However, there is a big problem with this narrative: Hamilton’s evidence of “abolitionism” is greatly exaggerated, if not nonsense.
The fragments of the previous letter have shown that Hamilton’s relationship with slavery is far from innocent. Two of his female relatives, Margaret skyler Skyler van Lunsiral and Angelica skyler Church, are both suspected of owning slaves in their family business, and the slaves they want to recall are also under the control of a sales contract involving another political acquaintance. There are many examples in Hamilton’s letters that show that he was in charge of finance in the process of selling, signing contracts or buying slaves, and the parties concerned were his immediate family members.
The details of these transactions are scattered, but there are some questionable records. On the customer note of a 1784 ledger, there is “to Peggy, a black girl who sold it to him”; Another account book records “250 dollars in cash, bought me two black N Lou”, dated in 1796, which may be related to another transaction to buy slaves for relatives of the church family. In a text that modern and contemporary Hamilton biographers usually avoid talking about, Hamilton’s grandson described the above record like this: “It is generally believed that Hamilton never owned a black slave, but this is not true. We found in his book that there are some records showing that he bought slaves for himself and others. ” In 1797, a record involving his relatives wrote, “John B. mr. church bought $225 from black women and children. Another related record has the words “same as above, a black woman was bought for $90”.
Most of these transactions involved Hamilton’s married relatives-he married the daughter of a wealthy and powerful skyler family in new york, which owned some slaves, mainly domestic servants. Although this practice was common among wealthy families in the late 18th century, it also showed that Hamilton had many experiences of directly using slaves or buying and selling slaves for his family. From his marriage in 1780 to his death in 1804, he was generally a beneficiary of slavery (new york promulgated a law in 1799 to change slaves into apprentices for a certain period and gradually abolish slavery).
This does not mean that slave owners or beneficiaries of slavery cannot have the idea of abolishing slavery. Hamilton is probably like this. In 1785, Hamilton joined the new york Manufacturing Association, which included many political elites in new york, such as john jay, Melancton Smith and Aaron Burr. Although the organization opposes slavery, its position is still moderate and progressive. His political efforts mainly focused on ending the slave trade, gradually dissolving slavery by means of batch liberation measures and setting a contract time limit, rather than abolishing it immediately. During his military career, Hamilton also supported the revolutionary war hero John Lawrence to encourage slaves to join the army and fight for America in exchange for freedom. But these measures-Hamilton’s reputation as an abolitionist is almost entirely based on this-are not very positive for the abolition of slavery, even by the standards of 1780.
Don’t forget that Hamilton was a prolific news critic. He published hundreds of opinions on almost all political issues at that time under his pen name. Hamilton’s works have a remarkable feature, that is, he basically does not clearly express the view of “abolitionism”, although many biographers call him that. From this point of view, he is in sharp contrast with the outstanding abolitionists of his time, who often wrote thousands of words. Think about john adams. Although he compromised with the southern states on the issue of slavery in order to save the new republic, he publicly expressed his opposition to slavery. Or compare Hamilton’s silence with Benjamin Franklin’s silence. Franklin also kept slaves in his early years, but later he gradually devoted himself to the cause of abolishing slavery and became an outspoken opponent of slavery on his deathbed. We can even compare Thomas Jefferson, who owned a huge plantation in Virginia, but wrote many books attacking the immorality of slavery, fearing that it would be bad for the future of the United States. In contrast, Hamilton’s works hardly say anything about slavery, only some abstract expressions, which simply can’t reach the kind of concreteness endowed by theorists who are committed to this topic today.
A series of evidences mentioned above cannot rule out the possibility of Hamilton’s ideological opposition to slavery, and his participation in the activities of the Slave Liberation Association is enough to illustrate some problems. However, the evidence does reveal a point that contemporary biographers are unwilling to admit: Hamilton’s anti-slavery tendency has been overwhelmed by family or other political considerations many times, and his formal political opinions can be described as overwhelming, but as far as the topics he talks about are concerned, he is a dwarf in action. It may be accurate to call him a “beneficiary of slavery who is uneasy about the system”, but it is quite absurd to call alexander hamilton an abolitionist-not to mention boasting that he is a pioneer among contemporary abolitionists.
Like others, since the spread of infectious diseases in COVID-19, artists have been challenged by new conditions and norms. Many people have to adjust their creative content, working methods and places, and come up with innovative methods to improve work efficiency in temporary studios with limited painting materials and relative loneliness.
But one thing is certain: in the face of daily headlines-devastating disease, pain and death, creative expression and beneficial reflection on losses are still essential.
In recent years, I have been studying the influence of diseases on American artists in the late 19th century. At that time, medicine could not control the rapid spread of infectious diseases, so people turned to art to help meet the needs of understanding and dealing with diseases. In a forthcoming book on art and disease, I mentioned the painter Albert Searle, whose life and work changed greatly after his wife died of tuberculosis. For this grief-stricken painter, art is a kind of therapy.
At the end of 18th century, tuberculosis was romanticized, and it was considered as a disease that could improve consciousness, creativity, insight and intellectual acuity. Poet john keats and pianist frederic chopin both died of tuberculosis in their early years, which consolidated the reputation of tuberculosis as an artist’s disease.
An early biographer in robert louis stevenson believed that tuberculosis enhanced the writer’s talent. In the relief depicting Stevenson’s stay in new york, Augustus Saint Gordon depicts the Bohemian writer. He has long hair and a cigarette in his hand. Although leaning against a pile of pillows, he still looks awake and efficient. As one critic said, this relief caught Stevenson’s “picturesque unhealthy”, as if illness had enhanced his charm.
Details of robert louis stevenson Relief Sculpted by Augustus Saint Gordon Source: Metropolitan Museum of Art.
If people know little about the impact of this disease, they are even more ignorant about the mode of transmission of this disease.
For hundreds of years, the cause of tuberculosis has been attributed to miasma or smelly air. Finally, in the 1980s, medicine realized that invisible microorganisms were the source of infection, and germs could spread quietly from person to person. Unlike miasma, which can be identified by smell, germs move quietly in crowded cities without being noticed, and they are everywhere.
Pure air and healthy life
When the painter Albert Thayer’s wife died in 1891, the germ theory was widely accepted. As the son of a doctor and a public health expert, Searle should be familiar with this theory. He was worried that his three young children would get sick, so he began to look for a “healthy” environment-a place with a lot of fresh air and surrounded by nature, where the family could eat nutritious meals, move freely outdoors and get enough rest.
Thayer and his wife are not the only families looking for a healing environment. The 1970s marked the beginning of the sanatorium movement. People who have or think they may have tuberculosis are treated in open-air sanatoriums in mountainous areas, deserts or near the sea to fight the disease. At that time, in the United States, about one in seven people died of tuberculosis.
Thayer and his children in Dublin, New Hampshire live on this facility. Their home is at the foot of Monadnock Mountain, so that their families can fully immerse themselves in the fresh mountain air, which was considered as the “purest” air type at that time.
Usually, Thayer paints in the morning, then climbs Mount Monadnock, or walks along a long path with his family. Outdoor activities encourage people to take more deep breaths, which they think will release toxins that pollute the lungs.
Thayer’s family slept in outdoor custom-made loungers with covers on three sides, which allowed them to breathe fresh air all night. Searle also invented the “breath catcher”, a device worn around the nose and mouth (similar to today’s protective mask). According to the idea at that time, this device could prevent the “harmful exhalation” of the human body from freezing on the bedding at night. Searle will also wear a special kind of wool underwear, which is said to have the function of disease prevention and further prevent the invasion of germs.
A vibrant angel
While Searle tried to protect his family’s health, his art also changed. Early in his career, Searle mainly painted landscapes and portraits. But after his wife Kate fell ill, Thiel took his children-Mary, Gerald and gladys-as the theme of his works.
In his first work Angel, he described his eldest daughter Mary as a goddess. Her pale skin, set off by her white robe and wings, conveys a fragile feeling, which reminds people of the influence of tuberculosis. This painting blends the contradiction between a healthy daughter and a sick mother, folding the image of a healthy young man and the fear of physical disintegration.
In 1892-93, Searle described three children standing outside. The cloud on Mary’s shoulder is like a pair of wings, implying Searle’s earlier description of her in Angel, and further implying that she is body double, his dead wife.
Albert Thayer’s Son of 1892-3 Image source: friel Art Museum.
In view of Kate’s illness, the whole family’s attention is focused on nature and health, and the picture of children marching barefoot and dusty is also very meaningful. Their classical costumes pay tribute to the ancient Greeks, who were praised for their commitment to good health and outdoor life in Searle’s time.
Perhaps during their hiking in Monadnock Mountain, Searle’s children were immersed in a healing environment, reflecting the life embraced by their father. In that era when infectious diseases were rampant, they became a model of healthy outdoor life.
This painting may look old, but it resonates now. Tuberculosis and COVID-19 are both lung diseases with symptoms including shortness of breath and cough. Before streptomycin was developed in the 1940s, there was no effective way to treat tuberculosis, so in Thiel’s era, prevention and persistence-just like in COVID-19-were often closely related to good hygiene and healthy life. Like Mary, Gerald and gladys, we are still walking in nature today, trying to get rid of the psychological and physical constraints of the isolation period.
Today, filling our lungs with fresh air is still a reassuring
In the trend of overthrowing the “problem” sculpture initiated by the black life is life movement, a series of figures statues related to the history of colonialism and racism, including George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, have become the focus of attention and controversy all over the world. Some people think that these sculptures are a way to praise and commemorate colonists and racists. When they are set up in public, they will propagate a wrong value and cause lasting harm to the oppressed. Some people think that these “problem” sculptures bear the history and have educational significance. To tear them down is to erase the history.
After the sculpture dispute was localized in Germany, Bismarck, the first German Prime Minister, became the primary target. This “bloody prime minister” is the primary hero of Germany’s reunification and the establishment of the empire. At present, there are more than 700 streets, 146 towers and 97 statues in Germany named after him. However, in recent years, with more and more reflections on the colonial history in German society, Bismarck’s role in the German colonial empire has been re-examined. During its reign, Germany, as a rising star of western European colonial power, became the third largest colonial empire in the world in a short time, and established colonies on several islands in East Africa, West Africa, Southwest Africa and the Pacific Ocean. From 1897 to 1918, Qingdao, China was also occupied.
Berlin -Citadel’s recent exhibition “Berlin and its Monuments” provides a debate space and a feasible answer to the question of sculpture. Although there are no sculptures directly related to colonial history in the exhibition, it preserves controversial sculptures in almost every period in Germany’s modern history, including military figures symbolizing Prussian militarism, a gift from Hitler to the German sports minister at the 1936 Berlin Olympic Games, and a 3.5-ton head of Lenin removed from East Germany after Germany’s reunification. Most of these sculptures were demolished from public places such as squares and streets after the establishment of the new regime.
“The museum is a safer discussion space. Urte Evert, director of the museum, said in an interview with Interface Culture (ID: BooksandFun). “In the museum, people can learn more background information through explanations, professional explanations or workshops, so that sculptures can get a’ context’. Different from other museums, visitors can touch all the sculpture exhibits of Berlin Bunker Museum. “These sculptures are all marble, some were blown up, some were damaged when they were moved away, and some were buried underground and dug up. “The museum decided to show them in their original state when they were discovered, because we wanted to show a tangible history,” Evert said.
In addition to the exhibits, the bunker museum itself also carries a heavy history. Located in a medieval castle in Spandau, Berlin, the museum was first mentioned in 1197. In the 16th century, the ruins of the castle were transformed into bunkers to defend the nearby city. In 1871, Prussia won the Franco-Prussian War and established the German Empire, where gold coins worth 120 million marks paid by France were stored. Half a century later, Germany was defeated in World War I, and these gold coins were pulled back to France. During the Nazi government, the Berlin bunker was transformed into a chemical weapons laboratory, where the German army developed nerve gas. After the defeat of World War II, Spandau was occupied by the Soviet Union and Britain, and later it was changed into a school and cultural place, and the military use of the bunker stopped.
Interface Culture recently interviewed Ute Evert, curator of Bunker Museum, and discussed with her the role of museums in preserving controversial sculptures, the colonial history of Germany, the future of Bismarck, and the history and identity of East Germany that was erased after the reunification of Germany.
Albrecht I (1110-1170), the first vassal of Brandenburg, nicknamed “Bear”, is considered as the man who brought Christianity to Brandenburg. Image source: Ye Ming
Interface culture: In the current discussion on historical reflection on colonialism and racism, Bismarck’s sculptures and monuments have become the focus of controversy in Germany. Bismarck, as an important military figure who unified Germany and the first German Chancellor, undoubtedly has an important position in history. On the other hand, he also helped to establish German colonies all over the world. What do you think of his sculpture?
Evert: The colonial history of Germany is only 25 years, which is very short, and it happened after the end of slavery, so we don’t have the colonial history like Britain, France and the United States, and we can’t compare Germany with other countries. Bismarck was not a direct supporter of colonialism. He doesn’t think Germany should pass on Christianity or the more advanced lifestyle in Western Europe to people in other countries. What convinced him was the economic interests of colonialism. It was Kaiser Wilhelm II’s crazy emphasis on colonization. He has always wanted to compete with Britain, want the strongest navy, and have territory in Africa and Asia like Britain. So I think Bismarck’s colonial history is a small part of him. We need to show this part to the public and provide some space in public places for people to watch, discuss and remember his history, but we should not completely remove his sculpture from public places.
In Witting, Berlin, there are also some streets commemorating African colonists and military figures. Now people are discussing whether these place names should be changed to commemorate those who suffered colonial rule. In a cemetery in New Coln, there is also a stone to commemorate the Prussian soldiers who died in southwest Africa, Germany. (Note: In southwest Africa, today’s Namibia, German colonialists committed genocide against the local Herrero and Nama people, resulting in 35,000-65,000 local deaths. Finally, in 2006, the name of a Namibian victim was added to the stone. I want to put this stone tablet in our exhibition. This monument to commemorate the colonists continues to be placed outside, and the harm to the descendants of the colonized people can be imagined. Although the colonial period has passed for a long time, today, the voice of colored people in Germany is finally heard.
Interface culture: Why didn’t Bismarck’s monument be demolished in the process of Prussia, the allied country after World War II?
Evert: At the end of World War II in 1945, the Allies did not want these sculptures representing Prussia and German militarism to appear in public view and ordered them to be removed. Because these sculptures are not directly related to the Nazis, they need to be removed from public places without being destroyed.
These sculptures were greatly damaged in World War II. At that time, people were worried that they would be more damaged, so they were buried on the land of Bellevue Palace in Berlin. In 1970s, Bellevue Palace became the office of the German President, and these sculptures were excavated again and moved to us. The statue of Bismarck is not always spared, but Bismarck is a respected figure of the Allies. He always wanted to form an alliance with Britain, but William II always wanted to compete with Britain, and later got rid of Bismarck. Although Bismarck was an important figure in Prussia, he was not an enemy of Britain and other allies.
Interface culture: What is the story of Lenin’s head sculpture in the museum?
Evert: This sculpture of Lenin is very famous. Its replica once appeared in the movie Goodbye Lenin. When East and West Germany were reunified in 1990, the sculpture was demolished by a crane, but in the film, the picture of it being lifted away by a helicopter was deeply imprinted in people’s minds. At that time, many people thought that every trace of socialist East Germany should be removed or even destroyed to show people that there was no socialism in Germany. I think that although the demolition process is legal and democratic, the West German government should allow more social discussions.
Urteever, curator of Berlin bunker, took a group photo with Lenin’s sculpture. Image source: Ye Ming
When Lenin’s statue was demolished, some East Germans felt that although I was in pain, I didn’t want it to be demolished, but wanted to show it to the public to commemorate our experience. Not all controversial things must disappear from public view, be destroyed or enter museums. Some problematic statues can be left in public on the premise of showing their historical problems. After Germany’s unification by merging East Germany into West Germany, the history of East Germany was covered up by the history of West Germany. Today, Germans still have some unhealed pains, which come from the division of Germany and the disintegration of East Germany during the Cold War.
Interface culture: As you mentioned in your previous interview, most of the reasons for the demolition of sculptures in Germany are the changes in government, political system and ideology. Especially after the reunification of Germany, the opportunity for East Germans to examine their own history was quickly erased by the West German government. Do you think its original intention is to do the right thing, or to show something else?
Evert: Both. During the Cold War, there was always political system competition between East and West Germany, and people grew up in this ideological competitive environment. After the collapse of East Germany, first of all, people breathed a sigh of relief that there was no war in Germany. Secondly, West Germans believe that this proves that their own values are correct and superior.
This sense of superiority has left some wounds for German society. Many East Germans have gradually discovered that everything in West Germany is not good. There must be many problems in East Germany-those who tried to cross the Berlin Wall and escape to West Germany were killed. But for some East Germans, the East German regime also has advantages. For example, its education system is much better than what we inherited from West Germany today. Although due to censorship, the history of East German school professors is incomplete and even contains many lies. However, its education system will not prematurely separate children according to their abilities, send those children whose families pay little attention to education to the track of vocational schools, and deprive them of the opportunity to receive higher education as they do today. At the beginning, West Germany should also listen to and learn from the good aspects of East Germany, instead of thinking that everything would be fine if we were in power. These pains are strongly manifested and become a big problem facing a unified Germany.
Bunker Museum showed the sculpture to the public after it was discovered. Image source: Ye Ming
Interface culture: What do you think is the difference between public streets and museums?
Evert: The museum is a safer discussion space. In the museum, people can learn more background information and get the “context” of sculpture through explanations, professional explanations or workshops. In outdoor public places, such opportunities are rare. But on the way, people can meet and discuss these public sculptures.
Recently, a sculpture in Thelen, a suburb of Berlin, was beheaded. This statue is called “Squatting Black Man”, and it was cast by German expressionist artist Arminius Hasselman. The people he carved were exaggerated and ugly, like animals. Hasemann used to have a studio in Lehndorff. After his death in the 1980s, people put this sculpture on a small road here. In Germany in the 1980s, no one thought that this sculpture would offend others. But he is a racist. He joined the Nazi party before the Nazi government seized power in the 1920s. In addition, the name of this sculpture bears the word N (a disparaging term for black people). Last year, under the lobbying of black civil rights organizations, the local government planned to move the sculpture. But two weeks ago, the statue was beheaded. Now the police are still investigating. We don’t know where the head is, who did it, or whether the saboteur’s purpose is racism or anti-racism. Before that, even people living there didn’t pay much attention to this sculpture. Now people are discussing this matter and how to deal with it.
Interface culture: Some people say that removing “toxic” sculptures means deleting history. Even if these sculptures are controversial and have problems, we should keep them so that people can learn history from them. What do you think of this?
Evert: I think the situation of each sculpture is different, so we should talk about it separately. Sometimes, it is right to choose to demolish, such as some statues related to racism. Those statues commemorating American federal slave owners or military figures were built long after the American Civil War, and they are industrial statues, not works of art built by artists, so I don’t think every such sculpture should be exhibited in museums. If you want to keep it, from the museum’s point of view, a statue of a slave owner is enough, and you don’t have to move it all to the museum. White people in the southern United States oppose the removal of the statue, probably because they are afraid that their history is not worth remembering, which also means that they are not worth remembering.
In Germany, many cultural relics, buildings and works of art were destroyed in World War II, so Germans especially want to preserve these things. Now, some Germans say that Nazi Germany only had 12 short years. Why do we always look at our country in the worst period in history as a benchmark, instead of looking at the great side of Germany? I think, of course, we can also commemorate the beautiful period in German history, but we should honestly show the good side and the bad side and show that we have not forgotten it, instead of showing the glorious side or claiming that we are the greatest country in history. The history of our country is like people, with good and bad.
People are used to sorting out the context of scholars’ academic thoughts from their special experiences. As far as Maruyama Sakurai Mako is concerned, his two military careers and the experience of atomic bombing can be regarded as the driving force for his criticism of supranationalism. However, it is the key to understand Maruyama’s ideological background to make a comprehensive investigation of Maruyama’s views in his works and speeches on different occasions and to clarify the concept of “in war”. It was his personal experience and witnessing the formation of Japanese fascism at home and abroad that made him have a deep understanding of Japan’s totalitarian state behavior, thus forming a “fifteen-year view of war” including the September 18th Incident, the war of aggression against China, the Great East Asia War and the Pacific War, which triggered his reflection on the imperial system and violence in the future.
In 1997, one year after Maruyama’s death, Ishida Xiong, who had academic exchanges with Maruyama for more than 30 years, regretted that he could not consciously talk to him that year, and edited and published Maruyama’s legacy, the war memorandum. In Commentary, Ishida tried to get a deeper understanding of the political scientist’s inner world and academic background through Maruyama’s memories of his special experience. Therefore, Ishida described Maruyama’s two military careers, that is, the military service process from 1944 to 1945. It is precisely because Maruyama had two life experiences: the ordinary housekeeper class and the headquarters intelligence class, that he could understand and master the overall structure of the imperial army from top to bottom. Because Maruyama claimed that his military experience was “irreplaceable and valuable experience”, Ishida concluded that after he retired, Maruyama made full use of his two military experiences, that is, six months later, when the outline of the new draft constitution was just published, he completed the article “The Logic and Psychology of Super Nationalism”. Ishida believes that this happened to be formed on the basis of his last experience in the military career; Through the statement that “war was originally a means, but it has lost its significance as a means”, Ishida further speculated that “when Maruyama wrote here, the scene of the original explosion in August 1945 undoubtedly came to mind.
In fact, Ishida only read a condensed version of a report with only 4,000 words (Japanese) [Twenty-four years’ eye language: Professor Masao Maruyama (then a first-class soldier) Thought and Action] However, when the prototype of the report, that is, the interviewer Lin’s oral interview with Maruyama was included in the 2008 edition of Maruyama Collection, people discovered that this Japanese manuscript with more than 17,000 words actually revealed so many previously unknown details [ On the afternoon of August 3, 1969, Lin came to a hospital in Tokyo and interviewed Maruyama, who was being treated for liver disease. At first, Maruyama was lying in a hospital bed. However, when the conversation reached a critical juncture, he suddenly sat up, especially when talking about the photos he had stayed with him since the original explosion. Maruyama stood up and the one-hour interview time prescribed by the doctor was postponed to two hours.
Relevant records show that Maruyama did talk about the relationship between the original explosion and academic research. He said clearly, “I talked about the war, but I didn’t talk about the initial explosion.” I saw the body lying in front of the headquarters and moaning sadly. Nevertheless, it may just be in my mind, or in my subconscious, and I don’t even understand why. In short, I didn’t think deeply about the original explosion until there was nuclear radiation in Bikini Island. This is what I need to confess. Lin’s interview also recorded the course and details of the incident: “Q: When will you stay in Hiroshima? Maruyama: In mid-September, or rather after mid-September. In a word, it was chaotic at that time, first the Soviet Union entered the war, and then on August 15th. There are also major events such as weapons extradition, and I am also very busy. That’s why I’m confessing. Why didn’t I think more deeply about the meaning of the explosion? Of course, there are various reasons, but one of them is related to a series of major events such as Japan’s defeat, the landing of American troops, and what Japan should do in the future. It is precisely because of these great events that my attention is completely distracted by them. For example, the original explosion is closely related to me personally … that is, on August 15, because of the end of the war, I felt saved. Of course, after the American troops landed, I also thought about fighting with them to the end, but after all, my feeling was saved. Another important reason is that on the third day after this, I received a telegram that read:’ My father was properly taken care of at the funeral of my mother’s death. My little post-war joy was blown away in an instant! Because it means that even if I go back to Tokyo, I can’t see my mother again. This is a veritable death. Now that I think about it, with this sadness, I naturally have no time to think about the original explosion itself. Not only that, Maruyama also talked about the so-called “amnesia” problem: “I almost lost my memory of what I did that day”, “Later, when I recalled what happened in the second week, what I did on August 6 was really completely out of my mind. It seems that the tragic square has been completely buried-this scene has become my last memory-and I have lost my memory. “
These are supplementary explanations for the reasons of “regret”, which makes him only give a dissatisfied answer to other questions: “Q: How do you feel now? What does the initial explosion experience mean to the formation of your thoughts? Maruyama: Well, some people insist on making a meaningful postscript or even fabricating facts, but I can’t help it, but they always hope that this statement can ferment in my place. But there is no real problem except fermenting these accumulated things. When asked about the following case, he could only answer vaguely: “Q: Did overseas friends know about Mr. Wang’s original explosion? It is mentioned in the introduction of the English version of the famous book Modern Political Thought and Action (Oxford University Press, 1963). Maruyama: From the cover of the book (added by the editorial department), it seems that they are all written. I didn’t expect to write on the cover of the book. However, the other party said that it was written by the minister in just a few lines of introduction, which specifically wrote my victim identity, which really surprised me after the book was published.
In fact, as early as four years before the original explosion in Hiroshima, Maruyama knew the result of the war through a report of the Soviet Union, and was convinced of it: “Pravda predicted that Japan would lose the war on December 8 (1941)!” Nevertheless, he didn’t expect Americans to end the war with such a deadly weapon. In the face of the first nuclear strike in Japanese history, which may also be the last nuclear strike of mankind, Maruyama was in a complicated mood and could not control himself. Although he rarely mentioned the experience of the original explosion, “but when I went to the United States to talk about the scene of the original explosion, I was very serious.” He said: “No matter how strongly Japan advocates the original explosion, no matter what we Japanese say, they will not refute it.” How many times have I tried? The Japanese made such a speech, and the audience also thought that what the Japanese said was right. So, at this point, I think our self-assertion is not enough. “The tragedy of war is not a simple page. If the tragedy of the war is really a simple page, there will be no new primary explosion patients and no long-term patients today, so that the second generation of victims will still die of leukemia today. Although the war ended 24 years ago, this “reality” still exists today. For Tokyo, the tragedy of war has become a thing of the past, but in Hiroshima, it happens every day and is being bombed every day. ” He hinted that it may be more humane to let Japanese militarism, which is actually a spent force, surrender in other ways than “indiscriminately killing” Americans.
Because Maruyama has a special and short military career, especially the initial explosion experience, when analyzing the background of his academic thought system, people like to stay on this point and pursue it, and think that this experience should contain the foothold of Maruyama’s future academic research. However, Maruyama’s embarrassing, vague and even openly negative attitude towards this question shows that Maruyama’s original experience of breaking the news has produced an invisible thrust on his later research. It is not difficult to see from his frequent overtime speech or even uncontrollable excitement or sadness when interviewed by reporters, but Maruyama still disagrees with the academic circles to speculate on the origin of his academic thoughts. The problem lies in two different eras.
Maruyama’s Ongoing War is a whole fifteen years from the September 18th Incident to the August 15th defeat, that is, the whole process of the Manchuria Incident, the Japan-China Incident, the Great East Asia War and the Pacific War initiated by Japanese militarism. Generally speaking, the “mid-war” is usually three or four years from the start of the war between Japan and the United States to the defeat of Japan, while Maruyama’s “military career” is only less than one year, or even the moment of the original explosion. Maruyama named his record of foreign information during the intelligence class of the General Staff as “Memo in War”, which may have caused some misunderstandings to his followers in form. The so-called “war” here is also called “wartime” in Japanese On December 12, 1941, Japan’s Cabinet Decision stated: “1. The wars accompanying the war between the United States and Britain and the future situation, including the zhina incident, are collectively called the Great East Asian War; Second, regarding the application of salary and criminal law, the demarcation time between peacetime and wartime should be divided into before 1: 30 noon on December 8, Showa, 16. Many people in Japanese political and academic circles have also inherited the second method for many years, that is, the so-called “war” in Japan, which generally refers to the Second World War (Pacific War), that is, from the Pearl Harbor attack on December 8, 1941 (December 7, local time in the United States) to the end of the war on August 15, 1945. Paradoxically, this concept, which only regards the “Pacific War” as “at war”, was later inseparable from the role of the United States. On December 15th, 1945, the Allied General Command (GHQ) issued the Shinto directive. In this order, the reference to “Great East Asian War” was banned, and the concept of “Pacific War” was pushed to the foreground. Moreover, even after GHQ completed its mission in April 1952, the concept of “Great East Asian War” never revived. Obviously, this has directly influenced scholars’ wording of war: the reason why Maruyama’s paper “The Logic and Psychology of Super Nationalism” published in May 1946 used “Pacific War” instead of “Great East Asia War” should be the result of fear of that “Shinto Instruction”; However, he still dared to use the word “Zhina incident” in his article, because this expression was not taboo by GHQ (Kenichi Matsumoto: Maruyama Mako: On the August 15 Revolution). The reason why Americans want to abolish the term “Great East Asian War” and replace it with “Pacific War” is because they not only hate the Asian colonial expansion that Japanese militarism is proud of, but also clearly emphasize the decisive significance of the United States’ declaration of war against Japan. However, the so-called “Great East Asian War” launched by Japan originally included aggression against Asia, but because of the change of its name, not only the time and space of the war were artificially shortened and narrowed, but also the war itself became a war aimed only at the United States. This means that the history of “hurting” Asia in the eyes of the Japanese is easily forgotten intentionally or unintentionally under such a design (Jiao Bing: Visiting Han Dongyu: Dispelling the Fog of Modern Japanese Foreign War).
In fact, Maruyama’s “fifteen-year war view” was formed in the domestic political changes accompanied by the ups and downs of Japan’s foreign aggression. In the rational generalization, it is in the conclusion of the judgment of public international law that the accumulation of evil deeds in fifteen years will inevitably lead to extinction. Some scholars pointed out: “(Maruyama) entered the old No.1 institution of higher learning in 1931, when the Manchuria Incident happened. After graduating in 1934, he went to the Faculty of Law of Imperial University in Tokyo. He graduated in 1937 at the beginning of the Sino-Japanese War (then known as the “zhina Incident”) and became an assistant to the Law School. After finishing his assistant thesis, he was promoted to associate professor of law in 1940, the year before the Japanese-American War. This means that his academic latitude and longitude are almost the same as those of the Japanese war and subsequent domestic fascism, and it also shows that Maruyama’s learning environment is deteriorating. (Duzhumian: Maruyama Masao case) This passage restores Maruyama Masao’s whole shady study and early study of the September 18th Incident, the war of aggression against China, the Great East Asian War and the Pacific War at the peak of Japan’s military system. This actually implies that some Maruyama researchers, whose case inference and pure theoretical concept discussion may only add a few articles to “touching the elephant” because they ignore the background of their academic thoughts, especially his consistent starting point and conclusion point.
At the end of the second year of “No.1 High School” (April 1933), Maruyama was arrested by a special high school class while attending a lecture on materialism organized by his father’s good friend Hasegawa. In the detention center, he was not only humiliated and mentally destroyed, but even before the end of the war, the word “Maruyama Masao” was recorded in the blacklist of Gaute and the gendarmerie (Maruyama Masao: “A philosopher suffered”), which made him unforgettable. During this period, his painful experience in the “One High School” stage was actually interpreted as a national political purge movement. Maruyama once regarded the eighth year of Showa (1933) as an epoch-making year in multiple senses. This year, including him, the number of people purged according to the Law on Public Security Punishment was as high as 4,481! Among them, in January, proletarian writer Kobayashi Takiji was killed; In May, Gao Chuan Yukio, a liberal criminal scientist at the old Imperial University of Kyoto, who was called “Professor Chihuahua”, was suspended, and Maruyama’s brother Tiexiong, who was studying in the Economics Department of Kyoto University, was also involved in this large-scale protest movement. In June, imprisoned Sano and Koyama issued a declaration of “turning” … which means that an era of “great turning point” has begun (Maruyama Masao: “Mr. Nanyuan’s Private-Private Personal, Chinese, Later Studies” in universities, the reason why this movement can last for so long is that the government must clean up the academics and ideas in university teaching, including Marxism. Ironically, in this “most miserable era in history”, Imperial University of Tokyo, which has always been regarded by the government as “the gathering place of outstanding elements”, is also doomed (Maruyama Masao: “Teacher of Mr. Namara”). In 1935, Mino Dage, a law professor, said that the Emperor was only the highest ruling institution under the Constitution; In 1937, the Lugouqiao Incident broke out, and the Sino-Japanese War took a major turn. Yanaibara Tadao, a professor of economics, resigned. In the second year, Professor Wei Bing Ouchi, Professor Boze Yangwen and Professor Wakimura Yoshitaro of the classmate department were suspended after being reported. In 1939, when the general commander of Ambassador Hirakawa of Dongda issued the “Hirakawa Su Learning Order”, Maruyama experienced the suspension of his classmates and Heying Jiro, and the punishment of Tsuda Zuoyou, which came like an avalanche and was irresistible (Maruyama Masao: “Teacher of Mr. Namara”)
The evil deeds of “super-nationalism” under the totalitarian system with the emperor as the state body not only brought profound disasters to the invaded countries, but also caused “mental internal injuries” to Japanese nationals, especially intellectuals who pursued democracy and freedom.
“In the short first half of the Third Reich, I lived and worked there. I witnessed with my own eyes how Adolf Hitler consolidated his power as a dictator of this great and chaotic country and how he led the country to war and conquest.”
During the twelve years from 1933 to 1945, Nazi Germany, known as the “Third Reich”, rose rapidly and declined rapidly, and almost all confidential files were released to the world at the end of World War II. William shirer, an American journalist who once reported in Nazi Germany, combined his personal experience with a large number of secret documents, personal diaries, confessions and testimonies, and created more than ten historical works, such as The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich: A History of Nazi Germany, The Diary of Berlin and The Collapse of the Third Republic.
In the book “The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich”, William Scheler tells his hatred of fascist dictatorship with personal experience-“The result of this war will be no conqueror or conquered, only charred bones piled up on an uninhabited planet.”
War correspondent and American writer William Scheler (middle) (source: Wikipedia)
On the occasion of the 75th anniversary of the victory of the world anti-fascist war and the 55th anniversary of the publication of the Chinese version of The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, Yilin Publishing House launched an updated version. During the Shanghai Book Fair, Zhang Mingyang, a historical columnist, and Wei Zhou, a book critic, started a dialogue and discussion about the rise and fall of Nazi Germany around this history book.
An intuitive racist
“For most Germans, Hitler has or will soon have the temperament of a real natural leader. In the next twelve years, they will follow him blindly, as if he had a wise trial from heaven. “
The rise and fall of the Third Reich began with the birth of Adolf Hitler. Zhang Mingyang and Wei Zhou agreed that as the head of Nazi Germany and the initiator of World War II, Hitler had strong intuition and inspiration-oriented judgment thinking.
“The private staff around Hitler confirmed that his work habits were very special. Sometimes he doesn’t work for days, and sometimes he suddenly goes out to play in the middle of the night. As can be seen from various histories, his thinking characteristics are biased towards pursuing absolute rather than relative. ” Wei Zhou believes that this trait is also reflected in his war thoughts. “Hitler was very fond of novel and adventurous plans, such as manstein’s sickle plan. Everyone thought it was too radical and risky, but Hitler chose to support it. “
The rise and fall of the Third Reich
William Scheler and Leshan Dong, etc.
Yilin Press 2020-05
Starting from the concept of “reality distortion field”, Zhang Mingyang further interprets the “magic” in Hitler: “Hitler said that the will is above everything else, which is actually a compensation for reality. Every time he gambled, he had a complete psychological expectation: it took only six weeks to break through Macedonia’s defense line, win the battles in France and Moscow, and ask the Germans to hold their positions. After winning seemingly impossible results again and again, Hitler’s gambling chips are getting bigger and bigger. ” In the military history, the situation that the sand table deduction could not be pushed forward was realized one by one in Hitler’s gambling, and he began to have a halo and “divinity”. With the supplement of the clearing mechanism, almost all the opposition forces gradually disappeared.
Regarding Hitler’s extreme racist identity, Weizhou shared his experience of visiting Dachau concentration camp (one of the three central concentration camps in Nazi Germany) in Munich, Germany. “After going to the field, I will deeply feel how the human situation has reached such a point. So anti-Semitism is indeed considered an unforgivable crime. “
Zhang Mingyang believes that Hitler’s atrocities against Jews in the Holocaust are like a reinforced proof. “On the one hand, it is to prove his theory that the German nation is the greatest nation in the world; On the other hand, this idea also reflects the result of his death-once he is defeated and his ideology is shattered, then his life is meaningless. “
Xing: A gamble that keeps pace with the times.
“On the eve of the birth of the Third Reich, a morbid tension hung over Berlin. Almost everyone can clearly see that the Weimar Republic is about to perish. It has been collapsing rapidly for more than a year. “
The birth of the Third Reich thus recorded the decisive historical moment of the birth of the Third Reich. Wei Zhou believed that Weimar Republic was an “era of chaos, division and pain”. “The people are very eager to end this split. Although the Nazi Party was a small party, it showed a firm attitude and was willing to compromise with different classes. Judging from the results, the Germans did see profound changes in a short time, such as mass tourism, mass promotion and realization. Although these resolute means now seem to have paid a huge price, they are affordable for people at that time. “
In 1918, World War I ended in Germany’s defeat, and Germany surrendered and signed the Treaty of Versailles. Zhang Mingyang pointed out that since the defeat, Germany has been shrouded in an atmosphere of extreme depression. “Hitler’s series of particularly firm and even rude resolutions have become a compliance with mainstream public opinion. The birth of the Third Reich can be seen as a rebound of the people under the original pressure. “
Wei Zhou mentioned a metaphor that impressed him deeply in his book: “Hitler came to power as if Germany was an old car that couldn’t be driven at that time. Now there’s a new driver. After the driver comes up, you can not only pull the car, but also sit on it comfortably. You feel good, but you gradually find that the car is driving faster than before, and it is getting faster and faster, and you can’t stop. “
Hitler (Source: Wikipedia)
Death: the pursuit of infinite self-destruction
“In his speech to Nazi local leaders in August 1944, Hitler said:’ If the German nation is defeated in this struggle, it must be too weak: it has failed to prove its heroism in the face of history and is doomed to be destroyed.’ “
The historical express train ran at the speed of life and death on the only road, with no brakes and nothing to stop it, and finally hit the bottom and died. The Third Reich, once boasted by Hitler as the “Millennium Empire”, existed for twelve years and four months in history. Both Zhang Mingyang and Wei Zhou said that the factor that made the Third Reich rise earlier was the injection that led to its final collapse.
As the turning point of the Soviet-German battlefield in World War II, the Battle of Stalingrad was the decisive factor for the rapid decline of Nazi Germany. “Even if Germany had not attacked the Soviet Union, it would have been destroyed.” Wei Zhou believed that the collapse of the Third Reich was not a military issue. “The resources of a country or a nation are limited, just as a person’s ability is limited. When you are pursuing an infinite goal and don’t know when to stop, this is actually a self-destructive process. “
Zhang Mingyang responded that after the success of “gambling” again and again, Hitler began to constantly expand himself: “In essence, Hitler thought that the state was only a tool to achieve racial goals. If the overall goal cannot be achieved, there is no need for the country to exist. “
“Hitler eliminated all voices against him step by step, and finally those crazy, violent and rude behaviors became more and more unconstrained. In the absence of any binding force in the country, the demise of the Third Reich is an inevitable result. ” Zhang Mingyang
In 2019, 3,624 Americans accepted a questionnaire survey. One of the questions was “Should Arabic numerals be taught in schools?” 56% of people chose “No” (72% of all respondents’ Republican supporters chose this option) and were deeply offended. Only 29% answered “Yes”. People who give negative answers don’t seem to know that the so-called “Arabic numerals” are the characters on their mobile phone keyboards.
There is a similar oolong in the construction industry. Although Kenneth Clark, Nicola pevsner and other art historians take it as their responsibility to explain the history of European civilization, their works rarely mention the Grand Mosque of Cordoba in the ancient city of Cordoba in southern Spain. Typical Arabic architectural style) and Alhambra de Granada (known as the “Forbidden City in Spain”, built by Moors in the Middle Ages)-they are obviously unusual and vital landmarks, and they are actually located in Europe. This omission is really staggering.
Diana Darke writes in her new book Stealing from Saracens that several Nordic countries claim that the so-called “Gothic” is their own landmark architectural style (such as Notre Dame and the Palace of Westminster, etc.). Design theorists such as john ruskin and Augustus Pugin also believe that Gothic is a typical Christian style. In fact, this style originated in the Arab world and was born by Arab and Muslim construction workers centuries after the Islamic prophet Muhammad. Ducker said that arches, ribbed vaults, conical roofs, bell towers, rose windows, domes with specific styles, various stained glass, castles, churches with twin towers and possibly cloisters can all be found in ancient buildings in the Middle East and southern Spain. She believes that the three-heart arch-a common three-petal style in churches, used to mark the trinity of Christianity-also originated in Arabia. At that time, people mistook the Dome Mosque in Jerusalem for the Temple of Solomon. Based on this ridiculous misunderstanding, some churches have copied the former architectural style.
The dome of the Cathedral of Our Lady of Flowers was designed by Philip brunelleschi. His design was inspired by Islamic architectural techniques and the work of a scientist in Cairo in the 11th century. Image source: Pocholo Calapre/Alamy
This Arab architectural style not only influenced the Middle Ages. The dome of Florence Cathedral, built by Italian architect brunelleschi, is a masterpiece of the early Renaissance. Its design inspiration probably comes from Islamic architectural technology and the works of a scientist named Ibn Al Haissam in Cairo in the 11th century. Antoni Antoni Gaudí, a devout Catholic and the designer of the Sagrada Familia Cathedral, made it clear that he borrowed excellent Spanish Islamic architecture.
There may be several ways to produce this widespread influence: communication between Spanish Muslim-ruled areas and their Christian neighbors; The link between the Crusaders and the pilgrims going to Jerusalem; There is also trade between cities, such as Venice and cities in Arab countries. Although Christians and Muslims are often at loggerheads, they always look for opportunities to learn from each other or steal each other’s ideas, and often take away indispensable craftsmen from their enemies.
Ducker sometimes overdoes it, and some of her cases are unconvincing-for example, the connection between Big Ben and the minaret of Aleppo Mosque in Syria is far-fetched-but she has collected countless evidences to prove that there have been a lot of exchanges and interactions between Christians and Muslims. This can be said to be expected. At that time, long-distance travel often needed to go by sea, so the Mediterranean countries were closely linked. Arab civilization introduced rich knowledge of mathematics, astronomy, medicine and philosophy to Europe, including algebra and calculus methods. In addition, there is a writing case: the English word “tabby” comes from the name of a striped fabric, which was first named after a prince named Attab in the Umayyad Dynasty of the Arab Empire. Therefore, it is conceivable that the achievements of Islam in architecture have also been passed down. As Ducker pointed out, the following contents are no longer news: As early as 300 years ago, the 17th century British architect Christopher Wren confirmed the influence of “Saracen” (referring to the desert Arab nomads from Syria to Saudi Arabia today) on the “Gothic” style.
In order to resist the cultural war related to architecture-for example, people often use beautiful photos of European architecture on Twitter to show the supremacy of their race-Ducker thinks it is necessary to reiterate Ryan’s point of view to everyone at this moment. She doesn’t want to argue that one culture is superior to another, but she wants to point out that cultural influence sometimes goes in the opposite direction, such as from Rome to Byzantium and finally back to the Arab world.
“I don’t mean to belittle the great achievements of European architecture,” she wrote. “My purpose is to show that no one can’ own’ architecture, just as no one can’ own’ science.” (Similarly, no one can have cat stripes. Although these views are well-founded, they will still arouse some people’s anger, but for most rational people, her book effectively reminds us that civilizations
William Dalrymple, a historian, suggested in the last debate speech at the Jaipur Literature Festival (JLF) that Britain should establish a “colonial history museum” to restore “those terrible historical truths” for our future generations.
In June this year, angry demonstrators in Bristol threw a bronze statue of slave owner Edward Kerr into the river. Times have changed, and the former national hero has now become a despised war criminal. On how to deal with these statues, Darling said that although he “doesn’t want to see them removed”, it is still “necessary”.
“It’s just like in Germany. We won’t see the statues of Hitler or other Nazi officers. Britain should also clean up these statues of war criminals. ” Darling believes that this has nothing to do with the trend of the times, but the corresponding measures based on facts. “For children, the Museum of Colonial History can play a great educational warning role, and this knowledge can’t be learned in class.”
The statue of John Nicholson is the best example. It is said that he once said that “the killers of British women and children will be skinned alive, pierced or burned to death”. In The Last Mughal, Darling mercilessly criticized Nicholson, calling him “extremely cruel and abnormal”. Today, two statues of Nicholson still stand on the land of Northern Ireland.
The statue of another colonial war leader, colin campbell, is located in Clydeside. This hero who has made outstanding achievements in the battlefield is mean and vicious in Dalinpu’s eyes: “This man sewed pigskin on Indian soldiers, forced them to lick blood, and then killed them with cannons.” In addition, Major General Henry Havelock was “equally vicious and ferocious. In Lucknow and Camp, nearly 100,000 civilians died at their hands. If this is in other places, it is an out-and-out war criminal. “
Colin campbell Statue Image Source: Wikipedia
Darling believes that there are many problems in history teaching in British schools at present. “From Henry VIII to william wilberforce, children believe that the British Empire has been on the road of liberating slaves and opposing racism.”
“What the British Empire did in India and other places was not written into the syllabus, which is a big problem,” Darling said. “Many British people know little about that history, unlike India, Ireland and Australia, such as British colonial rule in India, potato famine in Ireland or the extinction of Tasmanian aborigines. Therefore, in my opinion, it is necessary for us to seize the opportunity to build a museum of colonial history and use these statues of war criminals to fill the gap in school education. “
In the face of Darling’s proposal, historian Edward Chancellor disagreed: “In my opinion, the act of demolishing historical statues is closely related to social current affairs, which is behind the rise of boycott culture and condemnation culture, the popularity of confession and censorship system, the decline of social tolerance and the prevalence of anti-intellectualism.”
“As long as they meet the right opportunity, they will destroy all the statues,” the prime minister said. “This is a huge impact on the values of the Enlightenment and a signal of the rise of cultural nihilism. Behind this is a shallow, one-sided and ignorant view of history. They can’t understand that different historical periods have different values, and as historians, we should try to remain neutral and objective. “
Reporter Swapan Dasgupta also expressed opposition to Dallinpu’s proposal. In his speech, he pointed out that “history will not change because of a small bronze statue. People’s intention to remove these statues is not to rewrite history, nor to make history fairer. What they really want to do is beautify history, abandon those uncomfortable truths, purify the past and make history conform to contemporary moral values. “
In the subsequent solicitation of opinions, 53% of the audience said that statues from all over Britain should be