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Swords Reluctant: Max Pemberton’s roman-à-clef about the early twentieth century peace movement (1912)

Tiedau, U; (2020) Swords Reluctant: Max Pemberton’s roman-à-clef about the early twentieth century peace movement (1912). Angermion: Yearbook for Anglo-German Literary Criticism, Intellectual History and Cultural Transfers / Jahrbuch für britisch-deutsche Kulturbeziehungen , 12 (1) pp. 115-156. 10.1515/anger-2019-0006. Green open access

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Abstract

The article offers an analysis of the historical novel War and the Woman (London: Cassell & Co., 1912, 21914), published in the United States as Swords Reluctant (New York: G. W. Dillingham, 1912), by Sir Max Pemberton (1863—1950), which doubles up as a roman-àclef for the early 20th century peace movement. Dedicated to the Scottish-American industrialist, philanthropist and pacifist Andrew Carnegie and thanking Sir Max Waechter and Sir Francis Trippel, two Anglo-Germans who were the main drivers behind the European Unity League, one of the first campaign groups for European Federation as a means to prevent War on the continent, in the foreword, it is an extraordinary artefact, in which the prolific and popular adventure and mystery genre author takes Waechter’s real endeavours as background for a fictional storyline that reflects two discourses: the American gunmaker Hudson Maxim’s campaign against Pacifism, directed against his fellow industrial Andrew Carnegie and other anti-war activists, on one side of the Atlantic, and the European Unity League’s attempt at federating the states of Europe together, on the other. Apart from modifying the often read assessment of Pemberton as a “literary opportunist”, the novel helps uncover more about the European Unity League’s organisational history and establish the full extent of its reach and impact on British society as well as across the Atlantic.

Type: Article
Title: Swords Reluctant: Max Pemberton’s roman-à-clef about the early twentieth century peace movement (1912)
Location: Germany
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1515/anger-2019-0006
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1515/anger-2019-0006
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the version of record. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Max Pemberton, Max Waechter, Francis Trippel, Norman Angell, Andrew Carnegie, Hudson Maxim, Pacifism, anti-war movement, European Unity League, European movement, European Federation, Anglo-German rapprochement, popular literature, literary propaganda
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > SELCS
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10080970
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