By Murray Kempton
Via excellent photos of actual people who created the myths and realities of the Thirties, the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Murray Kempton brings that turbulent decade to existence. Himself a toddler of the time, Kempton examines with the perception and mind's eye of a novelist the boys and ladies who embraced, grappled with, and in lots of instances have been destroyed by way of the parable of revolution. What he calls the "ruins and monuments of the Thirties" comprise Paul Robeson, Alger Hiss, and Whittaker Chambers, the Hollywood Ten, the insurgent girls Elizabeth Bentley and Mary Heaton Vorse, and the exertions leaders Walter Reuther and Joe Curran.
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Additional info for Part of Our Time: Some Ruins and Monuments of the Thirties
H e r favorites were the fantasies of Jules Verne and she swore to herself to surpass the exploits of his heroes, w hether in the air or u n d e r the sea. Dolls and dresses bo red her, and for her. birthdays she d em a n d e d books about faraway places, or better yet the whole world—a globe! She d ream ed not o f grow ing up to be a coquette, of fancy dress balls, b u t o f wild country a n d glacier-tipped peaks. At least, h e r parents m ight take h e r traveling on school holidays. T hey failed to, and so A lexandra tried vainly to escape.
To Alexandra, the British 8 B OOK ONE: T H E SEEKER G overnm ent of India was the antagonist she feared. Ironically, David M acdonald, T rade Agent at Gyantse, fu rth e re d David-Neel’s ambitions by sending h e r on to his family at Yatung in the C hum bi Valley. T h e ir loving treatm ent may have saved h e r life and Yongden’s, so weakened had they become th ro u g h fatigue and illness. Victoria, then only twenty, gave h e r respectable clothes to wear down into India. She thou g h t A lexandra the handsom est wom an she had ever seen.
She awoke at a siding and, calling out, discovered they had b o ard ed an express to Scotland. T hey would have to wait until evening when a local came thro u g h to re tu rn to London. It began to drizzle, and they sat u n d e r a little shelter. ” T h e youthful occultist launched into a strange tale o f how our fate is determ in ed by our astral double in the oth er world. T h e hours sped by, and although the notions elaborated by Villemain to his fascinated friend harked back to the neo-Platonists, they also corresponded to the beliefs of Tibetan B uddhism .
Part of Our Time: Some Ruins and Monuments of the Thirties by Murray Kempton