Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Wed Jun 26, 2019 4:14 am

Oxford Majlis
by The Open University
Making Britain: Discover how South Asians shaped the nation, 1870-1950
Accessed: 6/25/19



The Majlis, established in 1896, was the main forum for Indian students at Oxford. It was not overtly political, to the extent of being at times bewilderingly naive. In January 1934, the Oxford Mail ran an eye-catching headline: 'FASCISM NO SOLUTION TO INDIAN PROBLEM -- Oxford Majlis' Decision in Debate With Fascists'. [24] There were other complaints of a lack of nationalist resolve. A student at left-leaning Ruskin College, Terence McCarthy, attended the Majlis's annual dinner at the Randolph Hotel in 1932 and was surprised to discover that a former viceroy of India was the chief guest. He was even more shocked when the peer broke Majlis convention by proposing a toast to the King-Emperor. 'Communist and Nationalist Indians rose to pledge loyalty. Despite all their revolutionary talk, they lacked the guts to brave the eye of Imperial England's hireling. I, a British worker, alone remained seated.' [25]

The Majlis had a chequered existence, with frequent complaints of lack of activity, paucity of membership and close-to-unmanageable debts. It staggered on from one crisis to another. What is the good of the Oxford Majlis?' one Indian student asked aloud in 1931. 'Most members are dissatisfied with it most of the time.' [26] Nevertheless, Dosoo Karaka, at one time president of the Majlis, insisted that it exercised considerable influence.

The little rectory of St Aldate's in Pembroke Street where it meets every Sunday provides an opportunity for the sixty or seventy Indians who come from various parts of that great continent, and who are scattered all over the university, to keep in touch with each other and with the latest developments in India, which the daily newspapers do not fully or accurately report. It is primarily a social body ... Although its membership is restricted to Indians it does not close its doors to others. In fact, its meetings are always attended by outsiders, who come as guests of the members of the club to get something of the Indian environment. [27]

Among the well-wishers and the curious was a regular contingent from St Hugh's. Barbara Castle recounted that Freda 'used to come with us occasionally to meetings of the Majlis, the mock parliament where Indian undergraduates threw themselves into rowdy and often disorderly debates.' [28] That's where bonds of affinity between Freda and her boyfriend developed. Freda's sense of social justice was outraged by the manner in which Indian nationalism was suppressed, and her sense of the spiritual was intrigued by the culture and philosophy of the East.

-- 2: The Gates of the World. The Lives of Freda: The Political, Spiritual and Personal Journeys of Freda Bedi -- EXCERPT, by Andrew Whitehead

Date began: 01 Jan 1896

About: The Oxford Majlis was a debating society founded in 1896 at the University by Indian Students. Following the format of the Oxford Union, and the Cambridge Majlis (founded 5 years earlier), Indian students would meet on Sunday evenings to hold formal debates. They would also hold other social events such as music, dancing and lectures from invited speakers. Each year they would hold a debate against the Cambridge Majlis.

Before Indian Independence, the Oxford Majlis would often take up debates of a political nature relating to empire and Indian’s relationship with Britain. The majority of Indian students at the University felt compelled to be part of the organization and take part in these political debates, even if they were intending to take up positions sympathetic to the British in India such as in the Indian Civil Service. The Majlis was not only restricted to Indian students; Sri Lankan and Burmese students were an integral part of the ‘Indian student’ community before 1947. The India Office and New Scotland Yard kept an eye on the Majlis in the early part of the twentieth century and were particularly concerned about their Communist sympathies in the late 1920s and 1930s.

Connections: Key members from this period include: Solomon Bandaranaike, M. C. Chagla, Govinda Krishna Chettur, Indira Gandhi, Mohammad Habib, Humayun Kabir, Basanta Kumar Mallik, K. P. S. Menon, Frank Moraes, Huseyn Shaheed Suhrawardy.

Examples of famous speakers to the Majlis in this period: Laurence Binyon, Rajani Palme Dutt, Ernest B. Havell, Sarojini Naidu, Shapurji Saklatvala, Rabindranath Tagore.

Related organization: Cambridge Majlis
Oxford Union

Published works: Bharat [journal]

Secondary works: The Majlis Magazine (Hilary 1986)

Chagla, Mahomedali Currim, Roses in December: An Autobiography, 1st edition 1973 (Bombay: Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, 1990).

Chettur, G. K., The Last Enchantment: Recollections of Oxford (Mangalore: B. M. Bookshop, 1934).

Kirpalani, Santdas Khushiram, Fifty Years with the British (London: Sangam Books, 1993)

Lahiri, Shompa, Indians in Britain: Anglo-Indian Encounters, Race and Identity, 1880-1930 (London: Frank Cass, 2000).

Menon, K. P. S., Many Worlds: An Autobiography (London: Oxford University Press, 1965)

Mukherjee, Sumita, Nationalism, Education and Migrant Identities: The England-Returned (London: Routledge, 2009)

Symonds, Richard, Oxford and Empire: The Last Lost Cause? (London: Macmillan, 1986)

Archive source: K. P. S. Menon papers, Nehru Memorial Library, Delhi

L/PJ/12/4 & L/PJ/12/252, India Office Records, Asian and African Studies Reading Room, British Library, St Pancras


Cambridge Majlis
by The Open University
Accessed: 3/20/20

Date began: 01 Jan 1891

The Cambridge Majlis was founded around 1891 for Indian students at the university. In its early days it met at the home of Dr Upendra Krishna Dutt. The society became a debating organization where Indian students at Cambridge could reason and practise debates, as well as socialize and discuss political matters. It was named after the Persian word for assembly. A number of Indian nationalist politicians came to Cambridge to address the Majlis. The Cambridge Majlis had close links with its Oxford counterpart, founded in 1896, with various joint dinners and debates.

Key individuals:

Upendra Krishna Dutt


Members included: Subhas Chandra Bose, K. L. Gauba, Aurobindo Ghose, Fazl-i-Husain, Mirza Abol Hassan Ispahani, Mohan Kumaramangalam, Jawaharlal Nehru, Rajni Patel, Shankar Dayal Sharma.

Notable speakers included: C. F. Andrews, E. M. Forster, M. K. Gandhi, Gopal Krishna Gokhale, Mohammed Ali Jinnah, Sarojini Naidu, Lala Lajpat Rai.

Related organization:

Oxford Majlis

Secondary works:

Deshmukh, C. D., The Course of My Life (Bombay: Orient Longman, 1974)

Khosla, G. D., Memory’s Gay Chariot: An Autobiographical Narrative (New Delhi: Allied Publishers, 1985)

Kiernan, V. G., ‘Mohan Kumaramangalam in England’, Socialist India, (23 February 1974), pp. 5-7, 36; (2 March 1974), pp. 13-17, 24

Lahiri, Shompa, Indians in Britain: Anglo-Indian Encounters, Race and Identity, 1880-1930 (London: Frank Cass, 2000)

Mukherjee, Sumita, Nationalism, Education and Migrant Identities: The England-Returned (London: Routledge, 2009)

Visram, Rozina, Asians in Britain: 400 Years of History (London: Pluto Press, 2002)

Archive source:

Cambridge Majlis Minute Book, 1932-7, Wren Library, Trinity College, Cambridge

Programme cards and menus, Saroj Kumar Chatterjee Collection, King’s College, Cambridge

L/PJ/12/4, India Office Records, Asian and African Studies Reading Room, British Library, St Pancras
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Wed Jun 26, 2019 4:32 am

François Lafitte: Analyst who highlighted the 1940 refugee scandal
by John Saville
Wed 4 Dec 2002 20.46 EST



The vigilance, albeit belated, of the British security service provides a window on the membership and activities of the October Club. Cambridge student communism in the 1930s spawned a celebrated cluster of Soviet agents at the heart of the British establishment. When this became apparent twenty years later with the defection to Moscow of two senior figures in British intelligence, Guy Burgess and Donald Maclean, MI5 became alarmed about how little they knew about Oxford communists at that time. They resolved to find out -- and were assiduous in approaching one-time members of the October Club who might be happy to share information about their former comrades. They were fortunate that the club's founder -- an American, Frank Strauss Meyer -- had recanted of his student communism and was happy to cooperate. [33] And still more valuable for MI5, another onetime member of the October Club, Francois Lafitte, divulged the names of all the Oxford student communists he could recall. Freda and Bedi were both on the list -- 'Seemed to me both to be close fellow-travellers. They married and went to Lahore ... ' -- and so too was Sajjad Zaheer, a 'very capable Indian and close friend of Olive Shapley.' [34]

-- 2: The Gates of the World. The Lives of Freda: The Political, Spiritual and Personal Journeys of Freda Bedi -- EXCERPT, by Andrew Whitehead

It was his work, in the late 1930s and early 1940s, with Political and Economic Planning (PEP), a leading institute for the study of social questions, that shaped the career of François Lafitte, who has died aged 89. The professor of social policy and administration at Birmingham University (1958-80), he also chaired the British Pregnancy Advisory Service from 1968 to 1988.

Yet it was in 1940 that he published his best known work: the Penguin Special, The Internment Of Aliens. This highlighted the governmental panic in the round-up of political refugees from fascism. His account of the often appalling living conditions of their internment provoked widespread comment and shame.

There were a number of progressively minded intellectuals in and around PEP who were seriously concerned with the future of social provision for the ordinary people of Britain. There was a growing dissatisfaction with Winston Churchill's wartime coalition government on social questions, and the expectation of change was increasingly explicit. The success of the left-of-centre radical Common Wealth party in wartime byelections was testimony to those expectations. This success increased the hopes and aspirations of François - who was rejected for military service on health grounds - and many of his colleagues.

His arguments for improved social provision took a new public form when, in 1943, he joined the Times as a leader writer on social policies. In 1945 he published a somewhat concentrated survey, Britain's Way To Social Security, which indicated both the failures of existing arrangements, and the nature of the changes required.

His writing for the Times was much encouraged with the election of Clement Attlee's Labour government in the summer of 1945. During the years of that administration he was quite close to certain ministers and their civil servants. His commentaries remained sympathetic but by no means uncritical. He also continued to chair some PEP research groups.

François was born in France to a French mother, Françoise, and an American father, a syndicalist John Collier, who had met and had had a short affair with Françoise while they were both in London. She returned home to give birth in the year before the outbreak of the first world war. Her son took her family name.

François was educated first at the College Municipal in Maubeuge, close to the Belgian border, and then in London at St Olave's Grammar School, in Southwark. His mother had returned to London to live with Havelock Ellis, the psychologist of sex and sexualities. Throughout his life François sometimes indicated that he thought of himself as an adopted son of Havelock, who died in 1939.

all social hygiene, in its fullest sense, is but an increasingly complex and extended method of purification—the purification of the conditions of life by sound legislation, the purification of our own minds by better knowledge, the purification of our hearts by a growing sense of responsibility, the purification of the race itself by an enlightened eugenics, consciously aiding Nature in her manifest effort to embody new ideals of life. It was not Man, but Nature, who realized the daring and splendid idea—risky as it was—of placing the higher anthropoids on their hind limbs and so liberating their fore-limbs in the service of their nimble and aspiring brains. We may humbly follow in the same path, liberating latent forces of life and suppressing those which no longer serve the present ends of life....

social hygiene is at once more radical and more scientific than the old conception of social reform. It is the inevitable method by which at a certain stage civilization is compelled to continue its own course, and to preserve, perhaps to elevate, the race....

The great movement of social reform during the nineteenth century, we thus see, has moved in four stages, each of which has reinforced rather than replaced that which went before: (1) the effort to cleanse the gross filth of cities and to remedy obvious disorder by systematic attention to scavenging, drainage, the supply of water and of artificial light, as well as by improved policing; (2) the great system of factory legislation for regulating the conditions of work, and to some extent restraining the work of women and of children; (3) the introduction of national systems of education, and the gradual extension of the idea of education to cover far more than mere instruction; and (4), most fundamental of all and last to appear, the effort to guard the child before the school age, even at birth, even before birth, by bestowing due care on the future mother. ...

Our sense of social responsibility is developing into a sense of racial responsibility, and that development is expressed in the nature of the tasks of Social Hygiene which now lie before us.

It is the control of the reproduction of the race which renders possible the new conception of Social Hygiene.

-- The Task of Social Hygiene, by Havelock Ellis

After school, François entered Worcester College, Oxford. There he joined the October Club. Most of this Marxist group were card-carrying members of the Communist party, and François himself remained in the party until later in the 1930s when he resigned following the Moscow trials and the execution of leading Bolsheviks.

He was still in the party on graduation and, after some time in Vienna, he was active for the Communist party in the East End of London. It was not a successful period of his life, and he was recalled and transferred by the CP to work with the International Miners Federation as a research assistant. After a year or so, and following his exit from the party, in 1938 he applied successfully for a research position with PEP, which had been launched in the early years of the decade.

From 1943 to 1958 he stayed with the Times. In 1958, came the appointment at the University of Birmingham. He enjoyed teaching, and for three years he was dean of his faculty.
During his academic years he wrote relatively little on what might be called his traditional subjects, but he developed a close interest in the problems of family planning.

He was especially concerned with the provision of public authority advice on all matters of birth control and abortion. In 1960 he was appointed chair of an FPA working party and in September 1963 his report, Family Planning In The Sixties, was published. It was these interests that dominated the last decades of his life.

François had married Eileen Saville in 1939, after a few somewhat tempestuous years, when Eileen's parents discovered that she was having a close relationship with François and Eileen left the family home. It was to be a happy marriage, broken by the suicide of their only son, Nicholas, in his late 20s, a tragedy which inevitably deeply affected them.

Lafitte was not always an easy person to be with, and it was his cheerful wife who greatly helped with visitors when matters became difficult. But they made a wide range of friends who were always ready to help. When Eileen died in 1996, François was faithfully looked after by a quite remarkable group, both young and old. It was a tribute to them both.

François Lafitte, social policy analyst, born August 3 1913; died November 21 2002
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Wed Jun 26, 2019 5:21 am

Francois Lafitte, 1913-2002
Francois Lafitte, pioneering social policy analyst, worked to widen access to family planning during the 1960s.
by University of Birmingham
Blue Plaque Guide



Photograph of Francois Lafitte. 1969

Francois Lafitte was Professor of Social Policy and Administration at the University of Birmingham from 1958–80 where he became interested in the matter of family planning; an area in which there was little public authority advice at the time. Lafitte was particularly concerned with matters of birth control and abortion.

Lafitte was influential in shaping post-war social policy. He cared deeply about social provision for ordinary people and was highly critical of the Family Planning Association’s failure, as he saw it, to reach couples of lower socioeconomic groups. In 1960 he was appointed chair of the Family Planning Association working party and in 1963 co-authored the influential Family Planning in the Sixties, which lead to the Family Planning Act in 1967. He also chaired the British Pregnancy Advisory Service from 1968 to 1988 and continued to campaign for improved social conditions throughout his life.

Lafitte described himself as ‘a young man of no importance who tries to be a good European’. While working for the leading institute for the study of social questions, Political and Economic Planning (later the Social Policy Institute), Lafitte’s produced his most widely known work: The Internment of Aliens, a Penguin Special published in 1940. It was the first book to bring the public’s attention to the mass and indiscriminate internment of German-speaking refugees and political exiles in Britain following Holland’s occupation by the Nazis in 1940. A number of Lafitte’s own friends had struggled against the Nazis in Germany and Austria and were later imprisoned in France and Britain as ‘enemy aliens’.

Shortly after joining The Times newspaper in 1943 to write about social policy issues, Lafitte published Britain’s Way to Social Security, which highlighted problems with the existing approach and recommended a raft of changes.

Social scientists at Birmingham continue to have an impact on every aspect of society. Their work explores many challenges including exploring the needs of new migrants, refugees and global communities; the well-being of children and families; improving lives and the security of those living in transitional and developing countries to the future of UK public services.

Lafitte with Arthur Collis and some final year Social Administration undergraduates, on University library steps. 1979

Britain’s Way to Social Security 1945
This Matter of Breeding James Seth Memorial Lecture 1974
The Internment of Aliens 1940


Joseph Chamberlain

Joseph Chamberlain Memorial Clock Tower (Old Joe)

As High Commissioner, Milner was subordinate to the Secretary of State for the Colonies, a post held at that time by Joseph Chamberlain, who was already acquainted with Milner. They had fought Home Rule together in the election of 1886 and had both been in Egypt in 1889. They already agreed on most of the important issues of the day, combining, like other members of the Milner Group, advocacy of social welfare and imperialism. Moreover, both were strong believers in union with Ireland and a new tariff policy based on imperial preference. When Chamberlain joined Lord Salisbury's government as Secretary of State for the Colonies (1895-1903), he was eager to accept the suggestion that Milner be sent to South Africa. As Colonial Secretary, Chamberlain did a number of things that won the complete support of Milner. Among these we might mention the new constitution for Jamaica (1899), the federation of the Malay States (1895), and the creation of the Commonwealth of Australia (1900). When Chamberlain resigned from the Colonial Office in 1903 on the issue of tariff reform, the post was offered by Balfour to Milner. The latter refused in order to complete the work he had started in South Africa.

-- The Anglo-American Establishment: From Rhodes to Cliveden, by Carroll Quigley
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Thu Jun 27, 2019 10:49 pm

Jan Smuts
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 6/27/19



Field Marshal The Right Honourable
Jan Smuts
Jan Smuts 1947.jpg
Smuts in 1947
2nd Prime Minister of South Africa
In office
5 September 1939 – 4 June 1948
Monarch George VI
Sir Patrick Duncan
Nicolaas Jacobus de Wet
Gideon Brand van Zyl
Preceded by James Barry Munnik Hertzog
Succeeded by Daniel François Malan
In office
3 September 1919 – 30 June 1924
Monarch George V
1st Earl of Buxton
HRH Prince Arthur of Connaught
1st Earl of Athlone
Preceded by Louis Botha
Succeeded by James Barry Munnik Hertzog
Personal details
Born Jan Christiaan Smuts
24 May 1870
Bovenplaats, Cape Colony
Died 11 September 1950 (aged 80)
Irene, Union of South Africa
Nationality South African
Political party
South African Party
United Party
Spouse(s) Isie Krige
Alma mater
Victoria College, Stellenbosch
Christ's College, Cambridge
Inns of Court
Profession Barrister

Field Marshal Jan Christiaan Smuts PC, OM, CH, DTD, ED, KC, FRS (24 May 1870 – 11 September 1950) was a South African statesman, military leader, and philosopher.[1] In addition to holding various cabinet posts, he served as prime minister of the Union of South Africa from 1919 until 1924 and from 1939 until 1948. Although Smuts had originally advocated racial segregation and opposed the enfranchisement of black Africans, his views changed and he backed the Fagan Commission's findings that complete segregation was impossible. Smuts subsequently lost the 1948 election to hard-line nationalists who institutionalised apartheid. He continued to work for reconciliation and emphasised the British Commonwealth's positive role until his death in 1950.[2]

He led a Boer commando in the Second Boer War for the Transvaal. During the First World War, he led the armies of South Africa against Germany, capturing German South-West Africa and commanding the British Army in East Africa.

From 1917 to 1919 he was also one of the members of the British Imperial War Cabinet and he was instrumental in the founding of what became the Royal Air Force (RAF). He became a field marshal in the British Army in 1941. He was the only person to sign both of the peace treaties ending the First and Second World Wars. A statue of him stands in London's Parliament Square.

Jacobus and Catharina Smuts, 1893


Early life

He was born on 24 May 1870, at the family farm, Bovenplaats, near Malmesbury, in the Cape Colony. His parents, Jacobus Smuts and his wife Catharina, were prosperous, traditional Afrikaner farmers, long established and highly respected.[3]

As the second son of the family, rural custom dictated that he would remain working on the farm; a full formal education was typically the preserve of the first son. In 1882, when Jan was twelve, his elder brother died, and Jan was sent to school in his brother's place. Jan attended the school in nearby Riebeek West. He made excellent progress here, despite his late start, and caught up with his contemporaries within four years. He moved on to Victoria College, Stellenbosch, in 1886, at the age of sixteen.[4]

At Stellenbosch, he learned High Dutch, German, and Ancient Greek, and immersed himself in literature, the classics, and Bible studies. His deeply traditional upbringing and serious outlook led to social isolation from his peers. He made outstanding academic progress, graduating in 1891 with double first-class honours in Literature and Science. During his last years at Stellenbosch, Smuts began to cast off some of his shyness and reserve, and it was at this time that he met Isie Krige, whom he later married.[5]

On graduation from Victoria College, Smuts won the Ebden scholarship for overseas study. He decided to travel to the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom to read law at Christ's College.[6] Smuts found it difficult to settle at Cambridge. He felt homesick and isolated by his age and different upbringing from the English undergraduates. Worries over money also contributed to his unhappiness, as his scholarship was insufficient to cover his university expenses. He confided these worries to a friend from Victoria College, Professor J. I. Marais. In reply, Professor Marais enclosed a cheque for a substantial sum, by way of loan, urging Smuts not to hesitate to approach him should he ever find himself in need.[7] Thanks to Marais, Smuts's financial standing was secure. He gradually began to enter more into the social aspects of the university, although he retained his single-minded dedication to his studies.[8]

During his time in Cambridge, he found time to study a diverse number of subjects in addition to law. He wrote a book, Walt Whitman: A Study in the Evolution of Personality, although it was unpublished until 1973.[9] The thoughts behind this book laid the foundation for Smuts' later wide-ranging philosophy of holism.[10]

Smuts graduated in 1894 with a double first. Over the previous two years, he had been the recipient of numerous academic prizes and accolades, including the coveted George Long prize in Roman Law and Jurisprudence.[11] One of his tutors, Professor Maitland, a leading figure among English legal historians, described Smuts as the most brilliant student he had ever met.[12] Lord Todd, the Master of Christ's College, said in 1970 that "in 500 years of the College's history, of all its members, past and present, three had been truly outstanding: John Milton, Charles Darwin and Jan Smuts."[13]

In December 1894, Smuts passed the examinations for the Inns of Court, entering the Middle Temple. His old Cambridge college, Christ's College, offered him a fellowship in Law. Smuts turned his back on a potentially distinguished legal future. By June 1895, he had returned to the Cape Colony, determined to make his future there.[14]

Climbing the ladder

Main article: Jan Smuts in the South African Republic

Smuts began to practise law in Cape Town, but his abrasive nature made him few friends. Finding little financial success in the law, he began to divert more and more of his time to politics and journalism, writing for the Cape Times. Smuts was intrigued by the prospect of a united South Africa, and joined the Afrikaner Bond. By good fortune, Smuts' father knew the leader of the group, Jan Hofmeyr. Hofmeyr in turn recommended Jan to Cecil Rhodes, who owned the De Beers mining company. In 1895, Smuts became an advocate and supporter of Rhodes.[15]

When Rhodes launched the Jameson Raid, in the summer of 1895–96, Smuts was outraged. Feeling betrayed by his employer, friend and political ally, he resigned from De Beers, and left political life. Instead he became state attorney in the capital of the South African Republic, Pretoria.[15]

After the Jameson Raid, relations between the British and the Afrikaners had deteriorated steadily. By 1898, war seemed imminent. Orange Free State President Martinus Steyn called for a peace conference at Bloemfontein to settle each side's grievances. With an intimate knowledge of the British, Smuts took control of the Transvaal delegation. Sir Alfred Milner, head of the British delegation, took exception to his dominance, and conflict between the two led to the collapse of the conference, consigning South Africa to war.[16]

The Boer War

See also: Military history of South Africa
Main article: Jan Smuts in the Boer War

Jan Smuts and Boer guerrillas during the Second Boer War, c. 1901

On 11 October 1899, war was declared with a Boer offensive into the British-held Natal and Cape Colony areas, Boer republics, beginning the Second Boer War. In the early stages of the conflict, Smuts served as Paul Kruger's eyes and ears, handling propaganda, logistics, communication with generals and diplomats, and anything else that was required. In the second phase of the war, Smuts served under Koos de la Rey, who commanded 500 commandos in the Western Transvaal. Smuts excelled at hit-and-run warfare, and the unit evaded and harassed a British army forty times its size. President Kruger and the deputation in Europe thought that there was good hope for their cause in the Cape Colony. They decided to send General de la Rey there to assume supreme command, but then decided to act more cautiously when they realised that General de la Rey could hardly be spared in the Western Transvaal. Consequently, Smuts was left with a small force of 300 men, while another 100 men followed him. By this point in the war, the British scorched earth policy left little grazing land. One hundred of the cavalry that had joined Smuts were therefore too weak to continue and so Smuts had to leave these men with General Kritzinger. Intelligence indicated that at this time Smuts had about 3,000 men.[17]

To end the conflict, Smuts sought to take a major target, the copper-mining town of Okiep. With a full assault impossible, Smuts packed a train full of explosives, and tried to push it downhill, into the town, where it would bring the enemy garrison to its knees. Although this failed, Smuts had proved his point: that he would stop at nothing to defeat his enemies. Norman Kemp Smith wrote that General Smuts read from Kant's Critique of Pure Reason on the evening before the raid. Smith contended that this showed how Kant's critique can be a solace and a refuge, as well as a means to sharpen the wit.[18] Combined with their failure to pacify the Transvaal, Smuts' success left the United Kingdom with no choice but to offer a ceasefire and a peace conference, to be held at Vereeniging.[17]

Before the conference, Smuts met Lord Kitchener at Kroonstad station, where they discussed the proposed terms of surrender. Smuts then took a leading role in the negotiations between the representatives from all of the commandos from the Orange Free State and the South African Republic (15–31 May 1902). Although he admitted that, from a purely military perspective, the war could continue, he stressed the importance of not sacrificing the Afrikaner people for that independence. He was very conscious that 'more than 20,000 women and children have already died in the concentration camps of the enemy'. He felt it would have been a crime to continue the war without the assurance of help from elsewhere and declared, "Comrades, we decided to stand to the bitter end. Let us now, like men, admit that that end has come for us, come in a more bitter shape than we ever thought."[19] His opinions were representative of the conference, which then voted by 54 to 6 in favour of peace. Representatives of the Governments met Lord Kitchener and at five minutes past eleven on 31 May 1902, Acting President Burger signed the Peace Treaty, followed by the members of his government, Acting President de Wet and the members of his government.[20]

A British Transvaal

Main article: Jan Smuts and a British Transvaal

Jan Smuts, c. 1914

For all Smuts' exploits as a general and a negotiator, nothing could mask the fact that the Afrikaners had been defeated and humiliated. Lord Milner had full control of all South African affairs, and established an Anglophone elite, known as Milner's Kindergarten. As an Afrikaner, Smuts was excluded. Defeated but not deterred, in January 1905, he decided to join with the other former Transvaal generals to form a political party, Het Volk (People's Party),[21] to fight for the Afrikaner cause. Louis Botha was elected leader, and Smuts his deputy.[15]

When his term of office expired, Milner was replaced as High Commissioner by the more conciliatory Lord Selborne. Smuts saw an opportunity and pounced, urging Botha to persuade the Liberals to support Het Volk's cause. When the Conservative government under Arthur Balfour collapsed, in December 1905, the decision paid off. Smuts joined Botha in London, and sought to negotiate full self-government for the Transvaal within British South Africa. Using the thorny political issue of South Asian labourers ('coolies'), the South Africans convinced Prime Minister Sir Henry Campbell-Bannerman and, with him, the cabinet and Parliament.[15]

Through 1906, Smuts worked on the new constitution for the Transvaal, and, in December 1906, elections were held for the Transvaal parliament. Despite being shy and reserved, unlike the showman Botha, Smuts won a comfortable victory in the Wonderboom constituency, near Pretoria. His victory was one of many, with Het Volk winning in a landslide and Botha forming the government. To reward his loyalty and efforts, Smuts was given two key cabinet positions: Colonial Secretary and Education Secretary.[22]

Smuts proved to be an effective leader, if unpopular. As Education Secretary, he had fights with the Dutch Reformed Church, of which he had once been a dedicated member, which demanded Calvinist teachings in schools. As Colonial Secretary, he opposed a movement for equal rights for South Asian workers, led by Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi.[22]

During the years of Transvaal self-government, nobody could avoid the predominant political debate of the day: South African unification. Ever since the British victory in the war, it was an inevitability, but it remained up to the South Africans to decide what sort of country would be formed, and how it would be formed. Smuts favoured a unitary state, with power centralised in Pretoria, with English as the only official language, and with a more inclusive electorate. To impress upon his compatriots his vision, he called a constitutional convention in Durban, in October 1908.[23]

There, Smuts was up against a hard-talking Orange River Colony delegation, who refused every one of Smuts' demands. Smuts had successfully predicted this opposition, and their objections, and tailored his own ambitions appropriately. He allowed compromise on the location of the capital, on the official language, and on suffrage, but he refused to budge on the fundamental structure of government. As the convention drew into autumn, the Orange leaders began to see a final compromise as necessary to secure the concessions that Smuts had already made. They agreed to Smuts' draft South African constitution, which was duly ratified by the South African colonies. Smuts and Botha took the constitution to London, where it was passed by Parliament and given Royal Assent by King Edward VII in December 1909.[23]

The Old Boers

Main article: Jan Smuts and the Old Boers

The Union of South Africa was born, and the Afrikaners held the key to political power, as the majority of the electorate. Although Botha was appointed prime minister of the new country, Smuts was given three key ministries: Interior, Mines, and Defence. Undeniably, Smuts was the second most powerful man in South Africa. To solidify their dominance of South African politics, the Afrikaners united to form the South African Party, a new pan-South African Afrikaner party.[24]

The harmony and co-operation soon ended. Smuts was criticised for his overarching powers, and the cabinet was reshuffled. Smuts lost Interior and Mines, but gained control of Finance. This was still too much for Smuts' opponents, who decried his possession of both Defence and Finance: two departments that were usually at loggerheads. At the 1913 South African Party conference, the Old Boers (Hertzog, Steyn, De Wet), called for Botha and Smuts to step down. The two narrowly survived a confidence vote, and the troublesome triumvirate stormed out, leaving the party for good.[25]

With the schism in internal party politics came a new threat to the mines that brought South Africa its wealth. A small-scale miners' dispute flared into a full-blown strike, and rioting broke out in Johannesburg after Smuts intervened heavy-handedly. After police shot dead twenty-one strikers, Smuts and Botha headed unaccompanied to Johannesburg to resolve the situation personally. Facing down threats to their own lives, they negotiated a cease-fire. But the cease-fire did not hold, and in 1914, a railway strike turned into a general strike. Threats of a revolution caused Smuts to declare martial law. Smuts acted ruthlessly, deporting union leaders without trial and using Parliament to absolve him and the government of any blame retroactively. This was too much for the Old Boers, who set up their own National Party to fight the all-powerful Botha-Smuts partnership.[25]

First World War

During the First World War, Smuts (right) and Botha were key members of the British Army

During the First World War, Smuts formed the Union Defence Force. His first task was to suppress the Maritz Rebellion, which was accomplished by November 1914. Next he and Louis Botha led the South African army into German South-West Africa and conquered it (see the South-West Africa Campaign for details). In 1916 General Smuts was put in charge of the conquest of German East Africa. Col (later BGen) J.H.V. Crowe commanded the artillery in East Africa under General Smuts and published an account of the campaign, General Smuts' Campaign in East Africa in 1918.[26] Smuts was promoted to temporary lieutenant general on 18 February 1916.[27]

While the East African Campaign went fairly well, the German forces were not destroyed. Smuts was criticised by his chief Intelligence officer, Colonel Richard Meinertzhagen, for avoiding frontal attacks which, in Meinertzhagen's view, would have been less costly than the inconsequential flanking movements that prolonged the campaign where thousands of Imperial troops died of disease. Meinertzhagen believed Horace Smith-Dorrien (who had saved the British Army during the retreat from Mons), the original choice as commander in 1916 would have quickly defeated the German commander Colonel (later General) Paul Emil von Lettow-Vorbeck. As for Smuts, Meinertzhagen wrote: "Smuts has cost Britain many hundreds of lives and many millions of pounds by his caution...Smuts was not an astute soldier; a brilliant statesman and politician but no soldier."[28] Meinertzhagen wrote these comments in October/November 1916, in the weeks after being relieved by Smuts due to symptoms of depression, and he was invalided back to England shortly thereafter.[29] Smuts was promoted to honorary lieutenant general for distinguished service in the field on 1 January 1917.[30]

Early in 1917 Smuts left Africa and went to London as he had been invited to join the Imperial War Cabinet and the War Policy Committee by David Lloyd George. Smuts initially recommended renewed western front attacks and a policy of attrition, lest with Russian commitment to the war wavering, France or Italy be tempted to make a separate peace.[31] Lloyd George wanted a commander “of the dashing type” for the Middle East in succession to Murray, but Smuts refused the command (late May) unless promised resources for a decisive victory, and he agreed with Robertson that Western Front commitments did not justify a serious attempt to capture Jerusalem. Allenby was appointed instead.[32] Like other members of the War Cabinet, Smuts' commitment to Western Front efforts was shaken by Third Ypres.[33]

In 1917, following the German Gotha Raids, and lobbying by Viscount French, Smuts wrote a review of the British Air Services, which came to be called the Smuts Report. He was helped in large part in this by General Sir David Henderson who was seconded to him. This report led to the treatment of air as a separate force, which eventually became the Royal Air Force.[34][35]

By mid-January 1918 Lloyd George was toying with the idea of appointing Smuts Commander-in-Chief of all land and sea forces facing the Turks, reporting directly to the War Cabinet rather than to Robertson.[36] Early in 1918 Smuts was sent to Egypt to confer with Allenby and Marshall and prepare for major efforts in that theatre. Before his departure, alienated by Robertson's exaggerated estimates of the required reinforcements, he urged Robertson's removal. Allenby told Smuts of Robertson's private instructions (sent by hand of Walter Kirke, appointed by Robertson as Smuts' adviser) that there was no merit in any further advance and worked with Smuts to draw up plans, reinforced by 3 divisions from Mesopotamia, to reach Haifa by June and Damascus by the autumn, the speed of the advance limited by the need to lay fresh rail track. This was the foundation of Allenby's successful offensive later in the year.[37]

Like most British Empire political and military leaders in World War I, Smuts thought the American Expeditionary Forces lacked the proper leadership and experience to be effective quickly. He supported the Anglo-French amalgamation policy towards the Americans. In particular, he had a low opinion of General John J. Pershing's leadership skills, so much so that he wrote a confidential letter to Lloyd George proposing Pershing be relieved of his command and that the US forces be placed "under someone more confident, like himself". This did not endear him to the Americans once it was leaked.[38]


Smuts in 1934

Smuts and Botha were key negotiators at the Paris Peace Conference. Both were in favour of reconciliation with Germany and limited reparations. Smuts advocated a powerful League of Nations, which failed to materialise. The Treaty of Versailles gave South Africa a Class C mandate over German South-West Africa (which later became Namibia), which was occupied from 1919 until withdrawal in 1990. At the same time, Australia was given a similar mandate over German New Guinea, which it held until 1975. Both Smuts and the Australian Prime Minister Billy Hughes feared the rising power of Japan in the post First World War world. When former German East Africa was divided into three mandated territories (Rwanda, Burundi, and Tanganyika) Smutsland was one of the proposed names for what became Tanganyika. Smuts, who had called for South African territorial expansion all the way to the River Zambesi since the late 19th century, was ultimately disappointed with the League awarding South-West Africa only a mandate status, as he had looked forward to formally incorporating the territory to South Africa.[39]

Smuts returned to South African politics after the conference. When Botha died in 1919, Smuts was elected prime minister, serving until a shocking defeat in 1924 at the hands of the National Party. After the death of the former American President Woodrow Wilson, Smuts was quoted as saying that: "Not Wilson, but humanity failed at Paris."[40]

While in Britain for an Imperial Conference in June 1921, Smuts went to Ireland and met Éamon de Valera to help broker an armistice and peace deal between the warring British and Irish nationalists. Smuts attempted to sell the concept of Ireland receiving Dominion status similar to that of Australia and South Africa.[41]

As a botanist, Smuts collected plants extensively over southern Africa. He went on several botanical expeditions in the 1920s and 1930s with John Hutchinson, former botanist-in-charge of the African section of the Herbarium of the Royal Botanic Gardens and taxonomist of note. Smuts was a keen mountaineer and supporter of mountaineering.[42] One of his favourite rambles was up Table Mountain along a route now known as Smuts' Track. In February 1923 he unveiled a memorial to members of the Mountain Club who had been killed in World War I.[42]

In December 1934, Smuts told an audience at the Royal Institute of International Affairs that:

How can the inferiority complex which is obsessing and, I fear, poisoning the mind, and indeed the very soul of Germany, be removed? There is only one way and that is to recognise her complete equality of status with her fellows and to do so frankly, freely and unreservedly ... While one understands and sympathises with French fears, one cannot, but feel for Germany in the prison of inferiority in which she still remains sixteen years after the conclusion of the war. The continuance of the Versailles status is becoming an offence to the conscience of Europe and a danger to future peace ... Fair play, sportsmanship—indeed every standard of private and public life—calls for frank revision of the situation. Indeed ordinary prudence makes it imperative. Let us break these bonds and set the complexed-obsessed soul free in a decent human way and Europe will reap a rich reward in tranquility, security and returning prosperity.[43]

Though in his Rectorial Address delivered on 17 October 1934 at St Andrews University he states that:

The new Tyranny, disguised in attractive patriotic colours, is enticing youth everywhere into its service. Freedom must make a great counterstroke to save itself and our fair western civilisation. Once more the heroic call is coming to our youth. The fight for human freedom is indeed the supreme issue of the future, as it has always been.[44]

Second World War

Smuts, standing left, at the 1944 Commonwealth Prime Ministers' Conference

After nine years in opposition and academia, Smuts returned as deputy prime minister in a 'grand coalition' government under J. B. M. Hertzog. When Hertzog advocated neutrality towards Nazi Germany in 1939, the coalition split and Hertzog's motion to remain out of the war was defeated in Parliament by a vote of 80 to 67. Governor-General Sir Patrick Duncan refused Hertzog's request to dissolve parliament for a general election on the issue. Hertzog resigned and Duncan invited Smuts, Hertzog's coalition partner, to form a government and become prime minister for the second time in order to lead the country into World War II on the side of the Allies.[45]

On 24 May 1941 Smuts was appointed a field marshal of the British Army.[46]

Smuts' importance to the Imperial war effort was emphasised by a quite audacious plan, proposed as early as 1940, to appoint Smuts as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, should Churchill die or otherwise become incapacitated during the war. This idea was put forward by Sir John Colville, Churchill's private secretary, to Queen Mary and then to George VI, both of whom warmed to the idea.[47]

In May 1945, he represented South Africa in San Francisco at the drafting of the United Nations Charter.[48] Also in 1945, he was mentioned by Halvdan Koht among seven candidates that were qualified for the Nobel Prize in Peace. However, he did not explicitly nominate any of them. The person actually nominated was Cordell Hull.[49]

Later life

Jan Smuts Museum, Irene, Pretoria

In domestic policy, a number of social security reforms were carried out during Smuts's second period in office as Prime Minister. Old-age pensions and disability grants were extended to 'Indians' and 'Africans' in 1944 and 1947 respectively, although there were differences in the level of grants paid out based on race. The Workmen's Compensation Act of 1941 “insured all employees irrespective of payment of the levy by employers and increased the number of diseases covered by the law,” and the Unemployment Insurance Act of 1946 introduced unemployment insurance on a national scale, albeit with exclusions.[50]

Smuts continued to represent his country abroad. He was a leading guest at the 1947 wedding of Princess Elizabeth and Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. [51] At home, his preoccupation with the war had severe political repercussions in South Africa. Smuts's support of the war and his support for the Fagan Commission made him unpopular amongst the Afrikaners and Daniel François Malan's pro-Apartheid stance won the Reunited National Party the 1948 general election.[48]

In 1948, he was elected Chancellor of the University of Cambridge, becoming the first person from outside the United Kingdom to hold that position. He held the position until his death.[52]

He accepted the appointment as Colonel-in-Chief of Regiment Westelike Provinsie as from 17 September 1948.[53] On 29 May 1950, a week after the public celebration of his eightieth birthday in Johannesburg and Pretoria, he suffered a coronary thrombosis. He died of a subsequent heart attack on his family farm of Doornkloof, Irene, near Pretoria, on 11 September 1950.[48]


Holism and related academic work

Main articles: Holism and Holism and Evolution

While in academia, Smuts pioneered the concept of holism, which he defined as "[the] fundamental factor operative towards the creation of wholes in the universe" in his 1926 book, Holism and Evolution.[54] Smuts' formulation of holism has been linked with his political-military activity, especially his aspiration to create a league of nations. As one biographer said:

It had very much in common with his philosophy of life as subsequently developed and embodied in his Holism and Evolution. Small units must develop into bigger wholes, and they in their turn again must grow into larger and ever-larger structures without cessation. Advancement lay along that path. Thus the unification of the four provinces in the Union of South Africa, the idea of the British Commonwealth of Nations, and, finally, the great whole resulting from the combination of the peoples of the earth in a great league of nations were but a logical progression consistent with his philosophical tenets.[55]


Smuts was for most of his political life a vocal supporter of segregation of the races, and in 1929 he justified the erection of separate institutions for blacks and whites in tones prescient of the later practice of apartheid:

The old practice mixed up black with white in the same institutions, and nothing else was possible after the native institutions and traditions had been carelessly or deliberately destroyed. But in the new plan there will be what is called in South Africa "segregation"; two separate institutions for the two elements of the population living in their own separate areas. Separate institutions involve territorial segregation of the white and black. If they live mixed together it is not practicable to sort them out under separate institutions of their own. Institutional segregation carries with it territorial segregation.[56]

In general, Smuts' view of black Africans was patronising, he saw them as immature human beings that needed the guidance of whites, an attitude that reflected the common perceptions of most non-Africans in his lifetime. Of Africans he stated that:

These children of nature have not the inner toughness and persistence of the European, not those social and moral incentives to progress which have built up European civilization in a comparatively short period.[56]

Although Gandhi and Smuts were adversaries in many ways, they had a mutual respect and even admiration for each other. Before Gandhi returned to India in 1914, he presented General Smuts with a pair of sandals (held by Ditsong National Museum of Cultural History) made by Gandhi himself. In 1939, Smuts, then prime minister, wrote an essay for a commemorative work compiled for Gandhi's 70th birthday and returned the sandals with the following message: "I have worn these sandals for many a summer, even though I may feel that I am not worthy to stand in the shoes of so great a man."[57]

Smuts is often accused of being a politician who extolled the virtues of humanitarianism and liberalism abroad while failing to practise what he preached at home in South Africa. This was most clearly illustrated when India, in 1946, made a formal complaint in the UN concerning the legalised racial discrimination against Indians in South Africa. Appearing personally before the United Nations General Assembly, Smuts defended the policies of his government by fervently pleading that India's complaint was a matter of domestic jurisdiction. However, the General Assembly censured South Africa for its racial policies[58] and called upon the Smuts government to bring its treatment of the South African Indians in conformity with the basic principles of the United Nations Charter.[58][59]

At the same conference, the African National Congress President General Alfred Bitini Xuma along with delegates of the South African Indian Congress brought up the issue of the brutality of Smuts' police regime against the African Mine Workers' Strike earlier that year as well as the wider struggle for equality in South Africa.[60]

In 1948 he went further away from his previous views on segregation when supporting the recommendations of the Fagan Commission that Africans should be recognised as permanent residents of White South Africa and not only temporary workers that really belonged in the reserves.[61] This was in direct opposition to the policies of the National Party that wished to extend segregation and formalise it into apartheid. There is however no evidence that Smuts ever supported the idea of equal political rights for blacks and whites. However he did say:

The idea that the Natives must all be removed and confined in their own kraals is in my opinion the greatest nonsense I have ever heard.[62]

The Fagan Commission did not advocate the establishment of a non-racial democracy in South Africa, but rather wanted to liberalise influx controls of Africans into urban areas in order to facilitate the supply of African labour to the South African industry. It also envisaged a relaxation of the pass laws that had restricted the movement of Africans in general.[63]


A 1944 painting of Smuts by William Timym in the Imperial War Museum

In 1943 Weizmann wrote to Smuts, detailing a plan to develop Britain's African colonies to compete with the United States. During his service as Premier, Smuts personally fundraised for multiple Zionist organisations.[64] His government granted de facto recognition to Israel on 24 May 1948 and de jure recognition on 14 May 1949 (following the defeat of Smuts' United Party by the Reunited National Party in the 26 May 1948 General Election, 12 days after David Ben Gurion declared Jewish Statehood, the newly formed nation being given the name Israel).[65] However, Smuts was deputy prime minister when the Hertzog government in 1937 passed the Aliens Act that was aimed at preventing Jewish immigration to South Africa. The act was seen as a response to growing anti-Semitic sentiments among Afrikaners.[66]

Smuts lobbied against the White Paper of 1939.,[67] and several streets and a kibbutz, Ramat Yohanan, in Israel are named after him.[65] He also wrote an epitaph for Weizmann, describing him as "the greatest Jew since Moses."[68] Smuts once said:

“ Great as are the changes wrought by this war, the great world war of justice and freedom, I doubt whether any of these changes surpass in interest the liberation of Palestine and its recognition as the Home of Israel.[69] ”


Statue in Parliament Square, London, by Jacob Epstein

One of his greatest international accomplishments was the establishment of the League of Nations, the exact design and implementation of which relied upon Smuts.[70] He later urged the formation of a new international organisation for peace: the UN. Smuts wrote the first draft of the preamble to the United Nations Charter, and was the only person to sign the charters of both the League of Nations and the UN. He sought to redefine the relationship between the United Kingdom and her colonies, helping to establish the British Commonwealth, as it was known at the time. This proved to be a two-way street; in 1946 the General Assembly requested the Smuts government to take measures to bring the treatment of Indians in South Africa into line with the provisions of the United Nations Charter.[58]

In 1932, the kibbutz Ramat Yohanan in Israel was named after him. Smuts was a vocal proponent of the creation of a Jewish state, and spoke out against the rising anti-Semitism of the 1930s.[71]

The international airport serving Johannesburg was known as Jan Smuts Airport from its construction in 1952 until 1994. In 1994, it was renamed to Johannesburg International Airport to remove any political connotations. In 2006, it was renamed again to its current name, OR Tambo International Airport, for the ANC politician Oliver Tambo.[72]

In 2004 Smuts was named by voters in a poll held by the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) as one of the top ten Greatest South Africans of all time. The final positions of the top ten were to be decided by a second round of voting but the program was taken off the air owing to political controversy and Nelson Mandela was given the number one spot based on the first round of voting. In the first round, Field Marshal Smuts came ninth.[73]

Mount Smuts is named for him.[74]

Orders, decorations and medals

Field Marshal Smuts was honoured with orders, decorations and medals from several countries.[75]

South Africa

• Africa Service Medal
• Dekoratie voor Trouwe Dienst
• Efficiency Decoration
• Medalje voor de Anglo-Boere Oorlog
• Union of South Africa Commemoration Medal
• Victory Medal

United Kingdom

• 1914–15 Star
• 1939–1945 Star
• Africa Star
• British War Medal
• Defence Medal
• France and Germany Star
• Italy Star
• King George V Silver Jubilee Medal
• King George VI Coronation Medal
• Order of Merit
• Order of the Companions of Honour
• War Medal 1939–1945


• Grand Cordon of the Order of Leopold II (1946)
• Grand Cross of the Order of the African Star (1948)
• Grand Officer of the Order of Leopold (1917)
• Croix de Guerre (1917)


• King Christian X's Liberty Medal (1947)


• Grand Cross of the Order of Muhammad Ali (1947)


• Commander of the Legion of Honour (1917)


• Grand Cross of the Order of the Redeemer (1949)
• Gold Cross of Valour (1943)


• Grand Cross of the Order of the Netherlands Lion (1946)


• Grand Cross of the Order of the Tower and Sword (1945)

United States

• European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal


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4. Hancock – Smuts: 1. The Sanguine Years, 1870–1919, p. 19
5. Smuts (1952), p. 19
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9. Jan C Smuts: Walt Whitman – a Study in the Evolution of Personality, Wayne State University Press 1973
10. Hancock – Smuts: 1. The Sanguine Years, 1870–1919, p. 28
11. Smuts (1952), p. 23
12. Letter from Maitland to Smuts, 15 June 1894; Hancock et al. (1966–73): vol. 1, pp. 33–34
13. Jan Smuts – Memoirs of the Boer War (1994) Introduction, p. 19
14. Smuts (1952), p. 24
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21. Williams, Basil (1946). Botha Smuts And South Africa. Hodder And Stoughton. pp. 52–53. Retrieved 14 October 2010.
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23. "Formation of the Union of South Africa". Salem Press. Archived from the original on 13 August 2013. Retrieved 17 May 2013.
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28. Army Diary Oliver and Boyd 1960 p. 205
29. Garfield, Brian. The Meinertzhagen Mystery: The Life and Legend of a Colossal Fraud. Pg 119; Potomac Books, Washington. 2007, ISBN 978-1597971607
30. "No. 29886". The London Gazette (Supplement). 29 December 1916. p. 15.
31. Woodward (1998), pp. 132–4
32. Woodward (1998), pp. 155–7
33. Woodward (1998), pp. 148–9
34. "Sir David Henderson". Lions Led By Donkeys. Centre for First World War Studies, University of Birmingham. Retrieved 26 July 2007.
35. Barrass, Malcolm. "Lieutenant General Sir David Henderson". Air of Authority – A History of RAF Organisation. Retrieved 26 July 2007.
36. Woodward (1998), p. 164
37. Woodward (1998), pp. 165–8
38. Farwell, Byron (1999). Over There: The United States in the Great War, 1917–1918.
39. Dugard, p. 38
40. Howe, p. 74
41. Smuts (1952), p. 252
42. Imperial ecology: environmental order in the British Empire, 1895–1945, Peder Anker Publisher: Harvard University Press, 2001 ISBN 0-674-00595-3
43. Kee, p. 54.
44. Smuts (1934) pp. 28–29.
45. Editors, The. "J.B.M. Hertzog | prime minister of South Africa". Retrieved 10 August 2017.
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55. Crafford, p. 140
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Primary sources

• Hancock, W.K.; van der Poel, J. (1966–73). Selections from the Smuts' Papers, 1886–1950. 7.
• Smuts, J.C. (1934). Freedom. Alexander Maclehose & Co. ASIN B006RIGNWS.
• Smuts, J.C. (1940). The Folly of Neutrality – Speech by the prime Minister. Union Unity Truth Service.

Secondary sources

• Beit-Hallahmi, Benjamin (1988). The Israeli Connection: Whom Israel Arms and Why. I.B. Tauris. ISBN 978-1850430698.
• Cameron, Trewhella (1994). Jan Smuts: An Illustrated Biography. Human & Rousseau. ISBN 978-0-798-13343-2.
• Colville, John (2004). The Fringes of Power. Weidenfeld & Nicolson. ISBN 978-0-297-84758-8.
• Crafford, F.S. (1943). Jan Smuts: A Biography. Kessinger Publishing. ISBN 1-4179-9290-5.
• Crossman, R.H.S. (1960). A nation reborn;: A personal report on the roles played by Weizmann, Bevin and Ben-Gurion in the story of Israel. Atheneum Publishers. ASIN B0007DU0X2.
• Crowe, J.H.V. (2009). General Smuts' Campaign in East Africa. Naval and Military Press. ISBN 978-1-843-42949-4.
• Dugard, John (1973). The South West Africa/Namibia Dispute: Documents and Scholarly Writings on the Controversy Between South Africa and The United Nations. University of California Press. ISBN 0-520-02614-4.
• Gooch, John (2000). The Boer War: Direction, Experience and Image. Routledge. ISBN 978-0-714-65101-9.
• Hancock, W.K. (1962). Smuts: 1. The Sanguine Years, 1870—1919. Cambridge University. ASIN B0006AY7U8.
• Hancock, W.K. (1968). Smuts: 2. Fields of Force, 1919–1950. Cambridge University. ISBN 978-0-521-05188-0.
• Heathcote, Tony (1999). The British Field Marshals 1736–1997. Leo Cooper. ISBN 0-85052-696-5.
• Howe, Quincy (1949). A World History of Our Own Times. Simon and Schuster. ASIN B0011VZAL6.
• Hunter, Jane (1987). Israeli Foreign Policy: South Africa and Central America. Spokesman Books. ISBN 978-0-851-24485-3.
• Kee, Robert (1988). Munich. Hamish Hamilton. ISBN 978-0-241-12537-3.
• Klieman, Aaron S. (1991). Recognition of Israel: An End & a New Beginning: An End and a New Beginning. Routledge. ISBN 978-0-824-07361-9.
• Smuts, J.C. (1952). Jan Christian Smuts by his son. Cassell. ISBN 978-1-920-09129-3.
• Spies, S.B.; Natrass, G. (1994). Jan Smuts: Memoirs of the Boer War. Jonathan Ball, Johannesburg. ISBN 978-1-868-42017-9.
• Woodward, David R. (1998). Field Marshal Sir William Robertson. Praeger. ISBN 0-275-95422-6.

Further reading

• Armstrong, H.C. (1939). Grey Steel: A Study of Arrogance. Penguin. ASIN B00087SNP4.
• Friedman, Bernard (1975). Smuts: A Reappraisal. Allen & Unwin. ISBN 978-0-049-20045-6.
• Geyser, Ockert (2002). Jan Smuts and His International Contemporaries. Covos Day Books. ISBN 978-1-919-87410-4.
• Hutchinson, John (1946). A Botanist in Southern Africa. PR Gawthorn Ltd. ASIN B0010PNVVO.
• Ingham, Kenneth (1986). Jan Christian Smuts: The Conscience of a South African. Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 978-0-312-43997-2.
• Lentin, Antony (2010). General Smuts: South Africa. Haus. ISBN 978-1-905791-82-8.
• Millin, Sarah (1936). General Smuts. 2. Faber & Faber. ASIN B0006AN8PS.

External links

• Media from Wikimedia Commons
• Quotations from Wikiquote
• Texts from Wikisource
• Works by Jan Smuts at Project Gutenberg
• Works by or about Jan Smuts at Internet Archive
• "Revisiting Urban African Policy and the Reforms of the Smuts Government, 1939–48", by Gary Baines
• Africa And Some World Problems by Jan Smuts at
• Holism And Evolution by Jan Smuts
• The White man's task by Jan Smuts
• Newspaper clippings about Jan Smuts in the 20th Century Press Archives of the German National Library of Economics (ZBW)
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Bhikaiji Cama
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 3/28/19



The movement in favour of India in US received further impetus from the visit of Madame Cama as an emissary of the Indian revolutionaries from London and Paris. Arriving in New York in October 1907, Madame Cama delivered a series of lectures before American audiences, explaining to them the purpose of her visit. “I am in America”, she said, “for the sole purpose of giving a thorough expose of the British suppression which is little understood so far away and to interest the warm hearted citizens of the great Republic” in our fight for freedom against the British rule. 20 Explaining the aims of the Indian revolutionaries abroad she made it clear that it was to achieve “Swaraj; self-government” and to strive for “liberty, equality and fraternity” with the hope of getting it within ten years.

When questioned by a press correspondent as to “how this mighty overthrow was to come about,” she explained, “by passive resistance. We are peaceful people and unarmed. We could not rise and battle if we could. We are preparing our people for concentrated resistance.” 21

In the subsequent meetings, which Madame Cama addressed at the Minerva Club and at the Adams Union Theological Seminary, she asked for the help of the American people for the political enfranchisement of India. Her only regret was that the American people had knowledge about the conditions in Russia, but they had no idea about the conditions in India under the British Government. 22

It was on account of her visit and her meeting with Barkatullah and Phelps, that both the societies decided to join in 1908 and worked together for self-rule for India. 23

The ruthless policy of the Government of India to suppress the rising tide of the national movement gradually convinced Indians abroad that it was futile to carry on the struggle on constitutional lines. Madame Cama in Paris and Savarkar in London started advocating violent methods for the attainment of freedom. Their propaganda had a direct impact on the political thinking of the Indians in America. This had already been noticed by the British Consul-General. He reported that the Indians were saying in private that they had been trying for the last twenty-one years to obtain freedom by constitutional means and were now tired of that line and that their difficulty, however, was the same as that of the Irish; they had no arms. 24

-- 3: Indian Revolutionary Movement in USA and Canada The Pan-Aryan Association. Excerpt from "Indian Revolutionary Movement Abroad" (1905-1921), by Tilak Raj Sareen, M.A., Ph.D.

A number of prominent Indian revolutionaries and nationalists were associated with India House, including Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, Bhikaji Cama, V.N. Chatterjee, Lala Har Dayal, V.V.S. Aiyar, M.P.T. Acharya and P.M. Bapat….

India House is a large Victorian Mansion at 65 Cromwell Avenue, Highgate, North London. It was inaugurated on 1 July 1905 by Henry Hyndman in a ceremony attended by, among others, Dadabhai Naoroji, Charlotte Despard and Bhikaji Cama….

The Paris Indian Society, a branch of the IHRS, was launched in 1905 under the patronage of Bhikaji Cama, Sardar Singh Rana and B.H. Godrej.[26] A number of India House members who later rose to prominence – including V.N. Chatterjee, Har Dayal and Acharya and others – first encountered the IHRS through this Paris Indian Society.[27] Cama herself was at this time deeply involved with the Indian revolutionary cause, and she nurtured close links with both French and exiled Russian socialists.[28][29] Lenin's views are thought to have influenced Cama's works at this time, and Lenin is believed to have visited India House during one of his stays in London.[30][31] In 1907, Cama, along with V.N. Chatterjee and S.R. Rana, attended the Socialist Congress of the Second International in Stuttgart. There, supported by Henry Hyndman, she demanded recognition of self-rule for India and in a famous gesture unfurled one of the first Flags of India.[32]….

From the time it was founded, India House cultivated a close relationship with socialist movements in Europe. Prominent Socialists of the time like Henry Hyndman were closely linked to the house. Cama cultivated a close relationship with French Socialists and Russian communists.
The IHRS delegation to Stuttgart in 1907 is known to have met with Hyndman, Karl Liebknecht, Jean Jaurès, Rosa Luxemburg and Ramsay MacDonald. Chatterjee moved to Paris in 1909 and joined the French Socialist Party.[103] M.P.T. Acharya was introduced to the socialist circle in Paris in 1910.[104]

India House, by Wikipedia

Bhikhaji Cama
Born 24 September 1861
Bombay, British India
Died 13 August 1936 (aged 74)
Bombay, British India
Organisation India House,
Paris Indian Society,
Indian National Congress
Movement Indian independence movement

Design of the "Flag of Indian Independence" raised by Bhikhaiji Cama on 22 August 1907, at the International Socialist Conference in Stuttgart, Germany.

Based on the Calcutta Flag, the green, yellow and red fields represent Islam, Hinduism and Buddhism respectively. The crescent and the sun again represent Islam and Hinduism. The eight lotuses in the upper register represent the eight provinces of British India. The words in the middle are in Devanagri script and read Vande Mataram "[We] Bow to thee Mother [India]", the slogan of the Indian National Congress.

The design was adopted in 1914 as the emblem of the Berlin Committee (later known as the Indian Independence Committee). The original flag raised by Cama in Stuttgart is now on display at the Maratha and Kesari Library in Pune.

Bhikaiji Rustom Cama[n 1] (24 September 1861 – 13 August 1936) was one of the prominent figures in the Indian independence movement.

Early life

Bhikhaiji Rustom Cama was born to Bhikai Sorab Patel on 24 September 1861 in Bombay (now Mumbai) in a large, well-off Parsi family.[1] Her parents, Sorabji Framji Patel and Jaijibai Sorabji Patel, were well known in the city, where her father Sorabji—a lawyer by training and a merchant by profession—was an influential member of the Parsi community. She was invited to hoist the flag over the parliament in Germany.

Like many Parsi girls of the time, Bhikhaiji attended Alexandra Native Girl's English Institution.[2] Bhikhaiji was by all accounts a diligent, disciplined child with a flair for languages.

On 3 August 1885, she married Rustom Cama, who was son of K. R. Cama.[3] Her husband was a wealthy, pro-British lawyer who aspired to enter politics. It was not a happy marriage, and Bhikhaiji spent most of her time and energy in philanthropic activities and social work.


In October 1896, the Mumbai Presidency was hit first by famine, and shortly thereafter by bubonic plague. Bhikhaiji joined one of the many teams working out of Grant Medical College (which would subsequently become Haffkine's plague vaccine research center), in an effort to provide care for the afflicted, and (later) to inoculate the healthy. Cama subsequently contracted the plague herself, but survived. As she was severely weakened, she was sent to Britain for medical care in 1902.

She was preparing to return to India in 1908 when she came in contact with Shyamji Krishna Varma, who was well known in London's Indian community for fiery nationalist speeches he gave in Hyde Park. Through him, she met Dadabhai Naoroji, then president of the British Committee of the Indian National Congress, and for whom she came to work as private secretary. Together with Naoroji and Singh Rewabhai Rana, Cama supported the founding of Varma's Indian Home Rule Society in February 1905. In London, she was told that her return to India would be prevented unless she would sign a statement promising not to participate in nationalist activities. She refused.[dubious – discuss][citation needed] That same year Cama relocated to Paris, where—together with S. R. Rana and Munchershah Burjorji Godrej—she co-founded the Paris Indian Society. Together with other notable members of the movement for Indian sovereignty living in exile, Cama wrote, published (in the Netherlands and Switzerland) and distributed revolutionary literature for the movement, including Bande Mataram (founded in response to the Crown ban on the poem Vande Mataram) and later Madan's Talwar (in response to the execution of Madan Lal Dhingra).[4] These weeklies were smuggled into India through the French colony of Pondichéry.

On 22 August 1907, Cama attended the second Socialist Congress at Stuttgart, Germany, where she described the devastating effects of a famine that had struck the Indian subcontinent. In her appeal for human rights, equality and for autonomy from Great Britain, she unfurled what she called the "Flag of Indian Independence".[n 2] It has been speculated that this moment may have been an inspiration to African American writer and intellectual W. E. B. Du Bois in writing his 1928 novel Dark Princess.[5] Cama's flag, a modification of the Calcutta Flag, was co-designed by Cama, and Shyamji Krishna Varma, and would later serve as one of the templates from which the current national flag of India was created.

In 1909, following Madan Lal Dhingra's assassination of William Hutt Curzon Wyllie, an aide to the Secretary of State for India, Scotland Yard arrested several key activists living in Great Britain, among them Vinayak Damodar Savarkar. In 1910, Savarkar was ordered to be returned to India for trial. When the ship Savarkar was being transported on docked in Marseilles harbour, he squeezed out through a porthole window and jumped into the sea. Reaching shore, he expected to find Cama and others who had been told to expect him (who got there late), but ran into the local constabulary instead. Unable to communicate his predicament to the French authorities without Cama's help, he was returned to British custody. The British Government requested Cama's extradition, but the French Government refused to cooperate. In return, the British Government seized Cama's inheritance. Lenin reportedly[6] invited her to reside in the Soviet Union, but she did not accept.

Influenced by Christabel Pankhurst and the Suffragette movement, Bhikhaiji Cama was vehement in her support for gender equality. Speaking in Cairo, Egypt in 1910, she asked, "I see here the representatives of only half the population of Egypt. May I ask where is the other half? Sons of Egypt, where are the daughters of Egypt? Where are your mothers and sisters? Your wives and daughters?" Cama's stance with respect to the vote for women was however secondary to her position on Indian independence; in 1920, upon meeting Herabai and Mithan Tata, two Parsi women outspoken on the issue of the right to vote, Cama is said to have sadly shaken her head and observed: "'Work for Indian's freedom and [ i]ndependence. When India is independent women will not only [have] the right to [v]ote, but all other rights.'"[7]

Exile and death

With the outbreak of World War I in 1914, France and Britain became allies, and all the members of Paris India Society except Cama and Singh Rewabhai Rana left the country (Cama had been advised by fellow-socialist Jean Longuet to go to Spain with M.P. Tirumal Acharya and Rana were briefly arrested in October 1914 when they tried to agitate among Punjab Regiment troops that had just arrived in Marseilles on their way to the front. They were required to leave Marseilles, and Cama then moved to Rana's wife's house in Arcachon, near Bordeaux. In January 1915, the French government deported Rana and his whole family to the Caribbean island of Martinique, and Cama was sent to Vichy, where she was interned. In bad health, she was released in November 1917 and permitted to return to Bordeaux provided that she report weekly to the local police. Following the war, Cama returned to her home at 25, Rue de Ponthieu in Paris.

Cama remained in exile in Europe until 1935, when, gravely ill and paralysed by a stroke that she had suffered earlier that year, she petitioned the British government through Sir Cowasji Jehangir to be allowed to return home. Writing from Paris on 24 June 1935, she acceded to the requirement that she renounce sedetionist activities. Accompanied by Jehangir, she arrived in Bombay in November 1935 and died nine months later, aged 74, at Parsi General Hospital on 13 August 1936.[8]


Cama on a 1962 stamp of India

Bikhaiji Cama bequeathed most of her personal assets to the Avabai Petit Orphanage for girls, which established a trust in her name. Rs. 54,000 (1936: £39,300; $157,200) to her family's fire temple, the Framji Nusserwanjee Patel Agiary at Mazgaon, in South Bombay.[9]

Several Indian cities have streets and places named after Bhikhaiji Cama, or Madame Cama as she is also known. On 26 January 1962, India's 11th Republic Day, the Indian Posts and Telegraphs Department issued a commemorative stamp in her honour.[10]

In 1997, the Indian Coast Guard commissioned a Priyadarshini-class fast patrol vessel ICGS Bikhaiji Cama after Bikhaiji Cama.

The high rise office complex in the posh location of South Delhi which accommodates big shot companies such as Jindal Group, SAIL, GAIL etc. are also named as Bhikaji Cama Place. This is a tribute to her.

Following Cama's 1907 Stuttgart address, the flag she raised there was smuggled into British India by Indulal Yagnik and is now on display at the Maratha and Kesari Library in Pune. In 2004, politicians of the BJP, India's political party, attempted to identify a later design (from the 1920s) as the flag Cama raised in Stuttgart.[11] The flag Cama raised – misrepresented as "original national Tricolour" – has an (Islamic) crescent and a (Hindu) sun, which the later design does not have.

Further reading

• Sethna, Khorshed Adi (1987), Madam Bhikhaiji Rustom Cama, Builders of Modern India, New Delhi: Government of India Ministry of Information and Broadcasting
• Kumar, Raj; Devi, Rameshwari; Pruthi, Romila, eds. (1998), Madame Bhikhaiji Cama, (Women and the Indian Freedom Struggle, vol. 3), Jaipur: Pointer, ISBN 81-7132-162-3.
• Yadav, Bishamber Dayal; Bakshi, Shiri Ram (1992), Madam Cama: A True Nationalist, (Indian Freedom Fighters, vol. 31), New Delhi: Anmol, ISBN 81-7041-526-8.


1. Bhikhai- (with aspirated -kh-) is the name as it appears in the biographies. Another common form is Bhikai- (with unaspirated -k-), as it appears on the postage stamp. The name is also frequently misspelled 'Bhikha-' (with missing -i-), which is a male name (unlike the feminine Bhikhai-).
2. "This flag is of India's independence. Behold, it is born. It is already sanctified by the blood of martyred Indian youth. I call upon you, gentlemen, to rise and salute the flag of Indian independence. In the name of this flag I appeal to lovers of freedom all over the world to cooperate with this flag in freeing one-fifth of the human race."
1. Acyuta Yājñika; Suchitra Sheth (2005). The Shaping of Modern Gujarat: Plurality, Hindutva, and Beyond. Penguin Books India. pp. 152–. ISBN 978-0-14-400038-8.
2. Darukhanawala, Hormusji Dhunjishaw, ed. (1963), Parsi lustre on Indian soil, 2, Bombay: G. Claridge.
3. John R. Hinnells (28 April 2005). The Zoroastrian Diaspora : Religion and Migration: Religion and Migration. OUP Oxford. p. 407. ISBN 978-0-19-151350-3. Retrieved 19 August 2013.
4. Gupta, K.; Gupta, Amita, eds. (2006), Concise Encyclopaedia of India, 3, New Delhi: Atlantic, p. 1015, ISBN 81-269-0639-1.
5. Bhabha, Homi K. (2004). "The Black Savant and the Dark Princess". ESQ. 50 (1st–3rd): 142–143.
6. Mody, Nawaz B., ed. (1998), The Parsis in western India, 1818 to 1920 (conference proceedings), Bombay: Allied Publishers, ISBN 81-7023-894-3
7. Forbes, Geraldine (1999), Women in Modern India, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, p. 100, ISBN 0-521-65377-0.
8. Taraporevala, Sooni, Parsis: The Zoroastrians of India: A Photographic Journey, New York City: Overlook Press, ISBN 1-58567-593-8
9. Dastur, Dolly, ed. (1994), "Mrs. Bhikaiji Rustom Cama", Journal of the Federation of Zoroastrian Associations of North America, 4.
10. India Post (1962), Bhikaiji Cama, Indian Post Commemorative Stamps, New Delhi
11. Guha, Ramachandra (26 September 2004), "Truths about the Tricolor ur", The Hindu.
12 Remembering 10 Forgotten Bravehearts this Women's Day on YouTube

Further reading

• Gupta, Indra (2003), India's 50 Most Illustrious Women, New Delhi: Icon Publications, ISBN 81-88086-19-3.
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Fri Jun 28, 2019 4:02 am

Werner Sombart
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 6/27/19



Werner Sombart
Born 19 January 1863
Ermsleben, Kingdom of Prussia
Died 18 May 1941 (aged 78)
Berlin, Germany
Nationality German
Known for Coining the term "late capitalism"
Scientific career
Fields Economics, sociology, history
Institutions University of Breslau, Handelshochschule Berlin, Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität
Doctoral advisor Gustav von Schmoller
Adolph Wagner
Doctoral students Wassily Leontief
Richard Löwenthal
Influences Max Weber, Karl Marx
Influenced Karl Polanyi, Joseph Schumpeter

Werner Sombart (/ˈvɜːrnər ˈzɒmbɑːrt/; German: [ˈzɔmbaɐ̯t]; 19 January 1863 – 18 May 1941) was a German economist and sociologist, the head of the “Youngest Historical School” and one of the leading Continental European social scientists during the first quarter of the 20th century.

Life and work

Wirtschaftsleben im Zeitalter des Hochkapitalismus, 1928

Early career, socialism and economics

Werner Sombart was born in Ermsleben, Harz, the son of a wealthy liberal politician, industrialist, and estate-owner, Anton Ludwig Sombart. He studied law and economics at the universities of Pisa, Berlin, and Rome. In 1888, he received his Ph.D. from Berlin under the direction of Gustav von Schmoller and Adolph Wagner, then the most eminent German economists.

As an economist and especially as a social activist, Sombart was then seen as radically left-wing, and so only received — after some practical work as head lawyer of the Bremen Chamber of Commerce — a junior professorship at the out-of-the-way University of Breslau. Although faculties at such eminent universities as Heidelberg and Freiburg called him to chairs, the respective governments always vetoed this. Sombart, at that time, was an important Marxian, someone who used and interpreted Karl Marx — to the point that Friedrich Engels said he was the only German professor who understood Das Kapital. Sombart called himself a "convinced Marxist,"[1] but later wrote that "It had to be admitted in the end that Marx had made mistakes on many points of importance."[2]

As one of the German academics concerned with contemporary social policy, Sombart also joined the Verein für Socialpolitik[3] (Social Policy Association) around 1888, together with his friend and colleague Max Weber. This was then a new professional association of German economists affiliated with the historical school, who saw the role of economics primarily as finding solutions to the social problems of the age and who pioneered large scale statistical studies of economic issues.

Sombart was not the first sociologist to devote an entire book to the concept of social movement as he did in his Sozialismus und soziale Bewegung, published in 1896. His understanding of social movements was inspired by Marx and by a book on social movements by Lorenz von Stein. For him, the rising worker’s movement was a result of the inherent contradictions of capitalism. The proletarian situation created a “love for the masses”, which, together with the tendency “to a communistic way of life” in social production, was a prime feature of the social movement.[citation needed]

In 1902, his magnum opus, Der moderne Kapitalismus (Historisch-systematische Darstellung des gesamteuropäischen Wirtschaftslebens von seinen Anfängen bis zur Gegenwart), appeared in two volumes (he expanded the work in 1916, and added a third volume in 1927; all three volumes were then split into semi-volumes for a total of six books). It is a systematic history of economics and economic development through the centuries and very much a work of the Historical School. The first book deals with the transition from feudal society to capitalism, and the last book treats conditions in the 20th century. The development of capitalism is divided into three stages:[4]

• Early capitalism (Frühkapitalismus), ending before the industrial revolution;
• High capitalism (Hochkapitalismus), beginning about 1760;
• Late capitalism (Spätkapitalismus), beginning with World War I.

Although later much disparaged by neo-classical economists, and much criticized in specific points, Der moderne Kapitalismus is still today a standard work with important ramifications for, e.g., the Annales school (Fernand Braudel). His work was criticised by Rosa Luxemburg, who attributed to it "the express intention of driving a wedge between the trade unions and the social democracy in Germany, and of enticing the trade unions over to the bourgeois position."[5]

In 1903 Sombart accepted a position as associate editor of the Archives for Social Science and Social Welfare, where he worked with his colleagues Edgar Jaffé and Max Weber.[citation needed]

In 1906, Sombart accepted a call to a full professorship at the Berlin School of Commerce, an inferior institution to Breslau but closer to political “action” than Breslau. Here, inter alia, companion volumes to Modern Capitalism dealing with luxury, fashion, and war as economic paradigms appeared; the former two were the key works on the subject until now. Also in 1906 his Why is there no Socialism in the United States? appeared. The book is a famous work on American exceptionalism in this respect to this day.[6]

Sombart's 1911 book, Die Juden und das Wirtschaftsleben (The Jews and Modern Capitalism), is an addition to Max Weber's historic study of the connection between Protestantism (especially Calvinism) and Capitalism, with Sombart documenting Jewish involvement in historic capitalist development. He argued that Jewish traders and manufacturers, excluded from the guilds, developed a distinctive antipathy to the fundamentals of medieval commerce, which they saw as primitive and unprogressive: the desire for 'just' (and fixed) wages and prices; for an equitable system in which shares of the market were agreed and unchanging; profits and livelihoods modest but guaranteed; and limits placed on production. Excluded from the system, Sombart argued, the Jews broke it up and replaced it with modern capitalism, in which competition was unlimited and the only law was pleasing the customer.[7] Paul Johnson, who considers the work "a remarkable book", notes that Sombart left out some inconvenient truths, and ignored the powerful mystical elements of Judaism. Sombart refused to recognize, as Weber did, that wherever these religious systems, including Judaism, were at their most powerful and authoritarian, commerce did not flourish. Jewish businessmen, like Calvinist ones, tended to operate most successfully when they had left their traditional religious environment and moved on to fresher pastures.[8]

In his somewhat eclectic 1913 book Der Bourgeois (translated as The quintessence of capitalism), Sombart endeavoured to provide a psychological and sociological portrait of the modern businessman, and to explain the origins of the capitalist spirit. The book begins with "the greed for gold", the roots of private enterprise, and the types of entrepreneurs. Subsequent chapters discuss "the middle class outlook" and various factors shaping the capitalist spirit - national psychology, racial factors, biological factors, religion, migrations, technology, and "the influence of capitalism itself."[9]

In a work published in 1915, a "war book" with the title Händler und Helden Sombart welcomed the "German War" as the "inevitable conflict between the English commercial civilisation and the heroic culture of Germany". In this book, according to Friedrich Hayek, Sombart revealed an unlimited contempt for the "commercial views of the English people" who had lost all warlike instincts, as well as contempt for "the universal striving for the happiness of the individual".[10] To Sombart, in this work, the highest ideal is the "German idea of the State. As formulated by Fichte, Lassalle, and Rodbertus, the state is neither founded nor formed by individuals, nor an aggregate of individuals, nor is its purpose to serve any interests of individuals. It is a 'Volksgemeinschaft' (people's community) in which the individual has no rights but only duties. Claims of the individual are always an outcome of the commercial spirit. The 'ideas of 1789' – Liberty, Equality, and Fraternity – are characteristically commercial ideals which have no other purpose but to secure certain advantages to individuals." Sombart further claims that the war had helped the Germans to rediscover their "glorious heroic past as a warrior people"; that all economic activities are subordinated to military ends; and that to regard war as inhuman and senseless is a product of commercial views. There is a life higher than the individual life, the life of the people and the life of the state, and it is the purpose of the individual to sacrifice himself for that higher life. War against England was therefore also a war against the opposite ideal – the "commercial ideal of individual freedom".[10]

Middle career and sociology

At last, in 1917, Sombart became professor at the Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität, then the pre-eminent university in Europe if not in the world[citation needed], succeeding his mentor Adolph Wagner. He remained on the chair until 1931 but continued teaching until 1940. During that period he was also one of the most renowned sociologists alive, more prominent a contemporary than even his friend Max Weber.[citation needed] Sombart's insistence on Sociology as a part of the Humanities (Geisteswissenschaften) — necessarily so because it dealt with human beings and therefore required inside, empathic "Verstehen" rather than the outside, objectivizing "Begreifen" (both German words translate as "understanding" into English) — became extremely unpopular already during his lifetime. It was seen as the opposite of the "scientification" of the social sciences, in the tradition of Auguste Comte, Émile Durkheim, and Max Weber — (although this is a misunderstanding since Weber largely shared Sombart's views in these matters) — which became fashionable during this time and has more or less remained so until today. However, because Sombart's approach has much in common with Hans-Georg Gadamer's Hermeneutics, which likewise is a Verstehen-based approach to understanding the world, he is coming back in some sociological and even philosophical circles that are sympathetic to that approach and critical towards the scientification of the world. Sombart's key sociological essays are collected in his posthumous 1956 work, Noo-Soziologie.

Late career and National Socialism

During the Weimar Republic, Sombart moved toward nationalism, and his relation to Nazism is still debated today.

In 1934 he published Deutscher Sozialismus where he claimed a "new spirit" was beginning to "rule mankind". The age of capitalism and proletarian socialism was over, with "German socialism" (National-Socialism) taking over. This German socialism puts the "welfare of the whole above the welfare of the individual".[11] German socialism must effect a "total ordering of life" with a "planned economy in accordance with state regulations".[12] The new legal system will confer on individuals "no rights but only duties" and that "the state should never evaluate individual persons as such, but only the group which represents these persons".[13] German socialism is accompanied by the Volksgeist (national spirit) which is not racial in the biological sense but metaphysical: "the German spirit in a Negro is quite as much within the realm of possibility as the Negro spirit in a German".[14] The antithesis of the German spirit is the Jewish spirit, which is not a matter of being born Jewish or believing in Judaism but is a capitalistic spirit.[15] The English people possess the Jewish spirit and the "chief task" of the German people and National Socialism is to destroy the Jewish spirit.[15]

However, his 1938 anthropology book, Vom Menschen, is clearly anti-Nazi, and was indeed hindered in publication and distribution by the Nazis. In his attitude towards the Nazis, he is often likened to Martin Heidegger as well as his younger friend and colleague Carl Schmitt, but it is clear that, while the latter two tried to be the vanguard thinkers for the Third Reich in their field and only became critical when they were too individualistic and elbowed out from their power positions, Sombart was always much more ambivalent. Sombart had many, indeed more than the typical proportion, of Jewish students, most of whom felt moderately positive about him after the war, although he clearly was no hero nor resistance fighter.

One of Sombart's daughters, Clara, was married to Hans Gerhard Creutzfeldt, who first described the Creutzfeldt–Jakob disease.


Sombart's legacy today is difficult to ascertain, because the alleged National Socialist affiliations have made an objective reevaluation difficult (while his earlier socialist ones harmed him with the more bourgeois circles), especially in Germany. As has been stated, in economic history, his "Modern Capitalism" is regarded as a milestone and inspiration, although many details have been questioned. Key insights from his economic work concern the - recently again validated - discovery of the emergence of double-entry accounting as a key precondition for Capitalism and the interdisciplinary study of the City in the sense of urban studies. Like Weber, Sombart makes double-entry bookkeeping system an important component of modern capitalism. He wrote in "Medieval and Modern Commercial Enterprise" that "The very concept of capital is derived from this way of looking at things; one can say that capital, as a category, did not exist before double-entry bookkeeping. Capital can be defined as that amount of wealth which is used in making profits and which enters into the accounts."[16] He also coined the term and concept of creative destruction which is a key ingredient of Joseph Schumpeter's theory of innovation (Schumpeter actually borrowed much from Sombart, not always with proper reference).[17][18] In sociology, mainstream proponents still regard Sombart as a 'minor figure' and his sociological theory an oddity; today it is more philosophical sociologists and culturologists who, together with heterodox economists, use his work. Sombart has always been very popular in Japan.

One of the reasons of a lack of reception in the United States is that most of his works were for a long time not translated into English - in spite of, and excluding, as far as the reception is concerned, the classic study on Why there is no Socialism in America.

However, in recent years sociologists have shown renewed interest in Sombart's work.[19][20]


• Sombart, Werner (1905) [1896]: Sozialismus und soziale Bewegung. Jena: Verlag von Gustav Fischer. English translation: Socialism and the Social Movement in the 19th Century, New York: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1898.
• Sombart, Werner (1909) [1903]: Die deutsche Volkswirtschaft im neunzehnten Jahrhundert. Berlin: G. Bondi.
• Sombart, Werner (1906): Das Proletariat. Bilder und Studien. Die Gesellschaft, vol. 1. Berlin: Rütten & Loening.
• Sombart, Werner (1906): Warum gibt es in den Vereinigten Staaten keinen Sozialismus? Tübingen: Mohr. Several English translations, incl. (1976): Why is there No Socialism in the United States. New York: Sharpe.
• Sombart, Werner (1911): Die Juden und das Wirtschaftsleben. Leipzig: Duncker. Translated into English: The Jews and Modern Capitalism., Batoche Books, Kitchener, 2001.
• Sombart, Werner: Der moderne Kapitalismus. Historisch-systematische Darstellung des gesamteuropäischen Wirtschaftslebens von seinen Anfängen bis zur Gegenwart. Final edn. 1928, repr. 1969, paperback edn. (3 vols. in 6): 1987 Munich: dtv. (Also in Spanish; no English translation yet.)
• Sombart, Werner (1913): Krieg und Kapitalismus. München: Duncker & Humblot, 1913.
• Sombart, Werner (1913): Der Bourgeois. München und Leipzig: Duncker & Humblot, 1913.
• Sombart, Werner (1913): Luxus und Kapitalismus. München: Duncker & Humblot, 1922. English translation: Luxury and capitalism. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.
• Sombart, Werner (1915): Händler und Helden. München: Duncker & Humblot. 1915.
• Sombart, Werner (1934): Deutscher Sozialismus. Charlottenburg: Buchholz & Weisswange. English translation (1937, 1969): A New Social Philosophy. New York: Greenwood.
• Sombart, Werner (1938): Vom Menschen. Versuch einer geisteswissenschaftlichen Anthropologie. Berlin: Duncker & Humblot.
• Sombart, Werner (1956): Noo-Soziologie. Berlin: Duncker & Humblot.
• Sombart, Werner (2001): Economic Life in the Modern Age. Nico Stehr & Reiner Grundmann, eds. New Brunswick: Transaction. (New English translations of key articles and chapters by Sombart, including (1906) in full and the segment defining Capitalism from (1916))

See also

• Werturteilsstreit


1. Harris, Abram L. (1942). "Sombart and German (National) Socialism". Journal of Political Economy. 50 (6): 805–835. doi:10.1086/255964.
2. Werner Sombart (1896), Socialism and the Social System NY: Dutton and Sons, translated by M. Epstein, p. 87
3. See the German WP article about the Verein, here
4. Sombart, Werner. International Encyclopedia of the Social Sciences, 1968.
5. Luxemburg, Rosa (2008). The Mass Strike. Haymarket Books. p. 178. ISBN 978-1931859-36-3.
6. Walker, Jesse (2011-02-22) People Who Live in the Shade, Reason
7. Werner Sombart, The Jews and Modern Capitalism, English trans., London 1913. Cited in Johnson, p.284
8. Paul Johnson, A History of the Jews, p.284
9. Werner Sombart, The quintessence of capitalism: a study of the history and psychology of the modern businessman. New York: Howard Fertig, 1967.
10. Hayek, Friedrich: The Road to Serfdom. Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1979, p. 126.
11. Harris, pp. 808-9.
12. Harris, pp. 810-11.
13. Harris, p. 811.
14. Harris, pp. 812-13.
15. Harris, p. 813.
16. Lane, Frederic C; Riemersma, Jelle, eds. (1953). Enterprise and Secular Change: Readings in Economic History. R. D. Irwin. p. 38. (quoted in "Accounting and rationality" Archived 2011-07-22 at the Wayback Machine)
17. Reinert, Erik. Creative Destruction in Economics: Nietzsche, Sombart, Schumpeter. In Friedrich Nietzsche (1844–1900).
18. ... nomics.pdf
19. Joas, Hans (2003). War and modernity. Wiley-Blackwell. ISBN 978-0-7456-2645-1.
20. ... RTICLE:322

Further reading

• Appel, Michael (1992): Werner Sombart: Historiker und Theoretiker des modernen Kapitalismus. Marburg: Metropolis.
• Backhaus, Jürgen G. (1996), ed. Werner Sombart (1863-1941): Social Scientist. 3 vols. Marburg: Metropolis. (The standard, all-encompassing work on Sombart in English.)
• Backhaus, Jürgen G. (2000), ed. Werner Sombart (1863-1941): Klassiker der Sozialwissenschaft. Eine kritische Bestandsaufnahme. Marburg: Metropolis.
• Brocke, Bernhard vom (1987), ed.: Sombarts Moderner Kapitalismus. Materialien zur Kritik und Rezeption. München: dtv
• Drechsler, W. "Zu Werner Sombarts Theorie der Soziologie und zu seiner Biographie", in Werner Sombart: Klassiker der Sozialwissenschaft. Eine kritische Bestandsaufnahme, Marburg: Metropolis, 2000, pp. 83–100.
• Iannone, Roberta (2013), Umano, ancora umano. Per un'analisi dell'opera Vom Menschen di Werner Sombart, Roma-Acireale, Bonanno.
• Lenger, Friedrich (1994): Werner Sombart, 1863-1941. Eine Biographie. München: Beck.
• Most, Kenneth S. "Sombart, Werner (1863-1941." In History of Accounting: An International Encyclopedia, edited by Michael Chatfield and Richard Vangermeersch. New York: garland Publishing, 1996. pp. 541–542.
• Muller, Jerry Z., 2002. The Mind and the Market: Capitalism in Western Thought. Anchor Books.
• Nussbaum, Frederick Louis (1933): A History of the Economic Institutions of Modern Europe: An Introduction of 'Der Moderne Kapitalismus' of Werner Sombart.New York: Crofts.
• Kevin Repp (2000). Reformers, Critics, and the Paths of German Modernity: Anti-Politics and the Search for Alternatives, 1890-1914. Boston, MA.: Harvard University Press. ISBN 0-674-00057-9.
• Sombart, Nicolaus (1991): Jugend in Berlin, 1933-1943. Ein Bericht. Frankfurt/Main: Fischer.
• Sombart, Nicolaus (1991): Die deutschen Männer und ihre Feinde. Carl Schmitt - ein deutsches Schicksal zwischen Männerbund und Matriachatsmythos. Munich: Hanser.

External links

• Works by Werner Sombart at Project Gutenberg
• Works by or about Werner Sombart at Internet Archive
• Works by Werner Sombart at Open Library
• Newspaper clippings about Werner Sombart in the 20th Century Press Archives of the German National Library of Economics (ZBW)
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Fri Jun 28, 2019 4:12 am

Gayatri Devi
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 6/27/19



Maharani Gayatri Devi
The Maharani in her early years
Maharani of Jaipur
Tenure 9 May 1940 − 1948
Titular Tenure 1948 – 24 June 1970
Born 23 May 1919
London, England, United Kingdom
Died 29 July 2009 (aged 90)
Jaipur, Rajasthan, India
Spouse Maharaja Man Singh II of Jaipur
(m. 1940 - 1970; his death)
Issue Maharaja Sawai Jagat Singh I of Isarda
House Koch
Father Maharaja Jitendra Narayan of Cooch-Behar
Mother Princess Indira Raje of Baroda
Religion Hinduism

Maharani Gayatri Devi (born as Princess Gayatri Devi of Cooch Behar; 23 May 1919 − 29 July 2009), was the third Maharani consort of Jaipur from 1940 to 1949, through her marriage to Maharaja Sawai Man Singh II.[1] Following her husband's signature for the Jaipur State to become part of the Union of India and her step-son's assumption of the title in 1970, she was known as Maharani Gayatri Devi, Rajmata of Jaipur.

Ethnically born in a Koch Rajbongshi Hindu family, her father was Maharaja Jitendra Narayan of Cooch Behar in West Bengal, and her mother was Maratha Princess Indira Raje of Baroda, the only daughter of Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III.

Following India's independence and the abolition of the princely states, she became a successful politician in the Swatantra Party. Gayatri Devi was also celebrated for her classical beauty and became something of a fashion icon in her adulthood. She served 12 years in congress, during which time she was a prominent critic of Indira Gandhi's government. After her departure from politics, she lived a quiet life in her large estate, spending time with her grandchildren and on hobbies and leisure.

She died on 29 July 2009 in Jaipur, at the age of 90. She was suffering from paralytic ileus and a lung infection. She left an estate estimated at nearly half a billion USD, which were passed on to her grandchildren.[2]

Early life

Gayatri Devi as a child

Ethnically born in a Koch Rajbongshi Hindu family, her father, Prince Jitendra Narayan of Cooch Behar (Koch Dynasty of Ancient Assam), presently West Bengal, was the younger brother of the Yuvaraja (Crown Prince). Her mother was Maratha Princess Indira Raje of Baroda, the only daughter of Maratha King, Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III, an extremely beautiful princess and a legendary socialite. Early in her life, her uncle's death led to her father ascending the throne (gaddi). Gayatri Devi studied at Glendower Preparatory School in London,[3] Patha Bhavana of Visva-Bharati University, Shantiniketan,[4] and later in Lausanne, Switzerland, where she travelled with her mother and siblings, then studied secretarial skills in London School of Secretaries; Brillantmont and Monkey Club London.

She first met Raja Saheb (H.H. Sir Sawai Man Singh II of Jaipur), when she was 12 and he had come to Calcutta to play polo and stayed with their family.[5] She married Sawai Man Singh II Bahadur on 9 May 1940.[1]

Maharani Gayatri Devi was a particularly avid equestrienne. She was an excellent rider and an able Polo player. She was a good shot and enjoyed many days out on 'Shikars'. Her Highness was fond of cars and is credited with importing the first Mercedes-Benz W126, a 500 SEL to India which was later shipped to Malaysia. She also owned several Rolls-Royces and an aircraft. Gayatri Devi had one child, Prince Jagat Singh of Jaipur, late Raja of Isarda, born on 15 October 1949, who was granted his uncle's fief as a subsidiary title. Jagat Singh was the half-brother to Bhawani Singh, who was the eldest son of his father born by his father's first wife.[1]

Rajmata saheb was once included in Vogue magazine's Ten Most Beautiful Women list.[6]

She started schools in Jaipur, most prominent of which is the Maharani Gayatri Devi Girls’ Public School established in 1943.[7] She also revived and promoted the dying art of blue pottery.

Political career

After partition and independence of India in 1947, Gayatri Devi ran for Parliament in 1962 and won the constituency in the Lok Sabha in the world's largest landslide, winning 192,909 votes out of 246,516 cast.[8] She continued to hold this seat on 1967 and 1971 as a member of the Swatantra Party founded by C. Rajagopalachari,[4] running against the Indian National Congress party.

In 1965, during a meeting with Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri, Gayatri Devi was again asked to join Congress. This was the time when, despite the fact that her husband was being made ambassador to Spain, she stuck to her principles and decided not to join the party. In 1967 the Swatantra party joined hands with Jan Sangh that was led by Bhairon Singh Shekhawat. The alliance won a large number of seats in the 1967 election. In the assembly election Gayatri Devi lost to Damodar Lal Vyas, in Malpura constituency, but won the Lok Sabha election.

The privy purses were abolished in 1971, terminating all royal privileges and titles. Gayatri Devi was arrested during the Emergency due to an alleged political vendetta on the false accusation of violating tax laws, and served 5 months in Tihar Jail.[9] She retired from politics and published her biography, A Princess Remembers, written by Santha Rama Rau, in 1976. She was also the focus of the film Memoirs of a Hindu Princess, directed by Francois Levie.

There were rumours that she might re-enter politics as late as 1999, when the Cooch Behar Trinamool Congress nominated her as their candidate for the Lok Sabha elections, but she did not respond to the offer.[10]


She had one son, Prince Jagat Singh, Raja of Isarda (15 October 1949 – 5 February 1997), who was granted his paternal uncle's (father's elder brother) fief of Isarda as a subsidiary title. Jagat Singh was married on 10 May 1978 to Mom Rajawongse Priyanandana Rangsit (b. 1952), daughter of Prince Piyarangsit Rangsit and Princess Vibhavadi Rangsit (née Rajani) of Thailand. The marriage produced two children:

• Rajkumari Lalitya Kumari (b. 1979)
• Maharaj Devraj Singh, Raja of Isarda (b. 1981)

Today, they are her only surviving descendants, and as such, have claimed to be heirs of their paternal grandmother. Maharaj Jagat Singh was thus half-brother to Bhawani Singh of Jaipur, the eldest son of the late Maharaja by his first wife, a Jodhpur princess.

Family relationships

Gayatri Devi pictured by Cecil Beaton in 1940.

Maharani Gayatri Devi was related to several other erstwhile royal families in India. She was herself not from the Rajput community, but from a dynasty native to Cooch Behar in Bengal and was daughter of Maharaja Jitendra Narayan and Maharani Indira Raje, who was daughter of Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III and Maharani Chimnabai belonging to the Gaekwad dynasty of the Marathas. Her grand-nephew, along with his wife (Poonam Singh Mewar) and 2 sons deceased in a car crash 17 years ago.

Her grandfather-grandmother were the Maharaja Nripendra Narayan Bhup Bahadur and Maharani Suniti Devi of Cooch Behar. Maharani Suniti Devi was the daughter of illustrious Brahmo social reformer Keshab Chandra Sen.

She had two brothers, Jagaddipendra Narayan and Indrajitendra Narayan of whom Jagaddipendra Narayan became Maharaja of Cooch Behar in his infancy after death of their father in 1922.

Thus she was closely connected maternally with Gaekwads of Baroda State. Further, her sister Ila Devi was married into the Tripura royal family, and her younger sister Menaka Devi was married in Dewas Jr. State. Thus through various inter connections, she was related to the royal houses of Kota, Sawantwadi, Akkalkot State, Jath State, Dewas Jr., Jasdan State, and Sandur, Tehri-Garhwal, Mayurbhanj, Dhar State, Kolhapur, Lunawada State, Baria and Raja of Payagpur, which was normal amongst the royalties of India.


She developed gastric problems in Tihar jail during the infamous state of emergency imposed by Congress party led by then PM Indira Gandhi. Later her gastric problem grew worse and so she was admitted to King Edward’s Hospital in London. She was being treated for the gastric disorder there and had expressed her desire to return to Jaipur. Gayatri Devi was flown in an air ambulance to Jaipur. She was admitted at Santokba Durlabhji Memorial Hospital (SDMH) on 17 July 2009. She died at the age of 90 on 29 July 2009, reportedly due to lung failure.[11][12]


Gayatri Devi held the following titles:

1919-1940: Her Highness Princess Gayatri Devi of Cooch Behar
1940-1949: Her Highness The Maharani of Jaipur
1949-1970: Her Highness Maharani Gayatri Devi
1970-2009: Her Highness Rajmata of Jaipur


• Stephane Bern. Gayatra Devi, une princesse au pays des Maharajas. Documentary by Roland Portiche and Vanessa Pontet. 1h45'. 2013. First broadcast on 26 December 2013, FR2 (French TV).


1. Karim, Fariha (31 July 2009). "Gayatri Devi: the last Maharani of Jaipur". London: The Times.
2. "A battle of wills: Gayatri Devi's £250m legacy". The Independent. 19 September 2009. Retrieved 3 May 2019.
3. Devi, Gayatri (1996), A princess remembers: the memoirs of the Maharani of Jaipur, Rupa & Co., p. 87, ISBN 978-81-7167-307-0
4. Whistle-Stopping Maharani Time (magazine), 10 November 1961.
5. "'I Had Shot My First Panther Before I Turned Thirteen': Gayatri Devi turned 13 in 1932". Outlook. 20 October 2008.
6. Sahwney, Anubha (2004) I've never felt beautiful: Gayatri Devi. The Times of India. 25 April.
7. "Rajmata Gayatri Devi". London: The Telegraph. 29 July 2009.
8. The Battle Royal - Maharani Gayatri Devi of Jaipur... Time (magazine), 28 July 1967.
9. Malgonkar, Manohar (1987). The Last Maharani of Gwalior: An Autobiography By Manohar Malgonkar. pp. 233, 242–244. ISBN 9780887066597.
10. Gayatri Devi may contest polls from Cooch Behar, The Statesman, 12 June 1999.
11. Gayatri Devi, former Jaipur queen, is dead
12. Rajmata Gayatri Devi of Jaipur dies at 90

Additional sources

• Devi, Gayatri (1977). A Princess Remembers: The Memoirs of the Maharani of Jaipur. J.B. Lippincott. ISBN 81-7167-307-4.
• Kanwar, Dharmendar (2004). Rajmata Gayatri Devi. Roli Books. ISBN 81-7436-294-0.
• Devi, Gayatri (1999). Gourmet's Gateway: A Royal Collection. Dharmendar Kanwar. ISBN 81-901221-0-X.
• Moore, Lucy (2005). Maharanis. Penguin. ISBN 978-0-14-303704-0.

External links

• Website of the MGD Girls School
• The Maharani's Death
• Rajmata Gayatri Devi - Daily Telegraph obituary
• Rediff article - Memoir by her ghost-writer
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Fri Jun 28, 2019 5:20 am

Charles Manning
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 6/27/19




Charles Anthony Woodward Manning (18 November 1894 – 10 March 1978)[1] was a South African academic. He is considered to be a leading figure in the English School tradition of international relations scholarship.[2]

Early life and education

Charles was the son of Dumaresque Williamson Manning and Helena Isabella Bell.[3] He was educated at the Diocesan College (Bishops), Rondebosch, the South African College, Cape Town; and as a Rhodes Scholar at Brasenose College, Oxford, which he entered in 1914. His academic career was interrupted by military service; he enlisted in the 18th Royal Fusilliers in 1914 and was commissioned in the 7th Oxford and Bucks Light Infantry in the following year. He saw active service in France and Salonkia, 1915-17, was wounded and twice mentioned in despatches. From 1917-18 he served as an Acting Captain and Instructor in the 11th officer cadet battalion.[4]

Returning to Oxford he graduated with a First in Literae Humaniores ('Greats') in 1920, a First in Jurisprudence in 1921, and a First in Civil Law in 1922. He was Senior Hulme Scholar, 1921. He became a barrister in Middle Temple, 1922.[5]

Professional career

In 1922 he joined the League of Nations International Labour Office (Diplomatic Division) and in the same year was appointed Personal Secretary to the Secretary General, Sir Eric Drummond.[6][7]

His academic career resumed in 1923 when he was appointed a Law Fellow at New College, Oxford, and Law Lecturer at both New and Pembroke Colleges. He moved to Harvard University as Laura Spellman Rockefeller Fellow, 1925-26, but returned to Oxford as Deputy Professor of International Law and Diplomacy in 1927. He was Examiner in Roman Law to the Council of Legal Education, 1927-32. In 1930 he was appointed Montague Burton (formerly Cassel) Professor of International Relations, London School of Economics, University of London in 1930, a post he held until his retirement in 1962. During the Second World War he was Senior Specialist, Chatham House, 1939-43.[8]

The politics of Apartheid

Professor H.G. Hanbury (19 June 1898 – 12 March 1993), a fellow academic lawyer, describes Manning's attitude as follows:

'From 1964 onwards he was chairman of the South Africa Society, and was a brave apologist for his own country. Though his patience must have been sometimes sorely tried by vitriolic attacks made on it, often by persons whose knowledge of it was scant, he was almost always courteous to its critics, and such was the regard in which his transparent sincerity was held, that never were attacks made personally on him.'[9]

Manning's London School of Economics colleague, Professor F.S. Northedge (16 October 1918 – 3 March 1985), refers to Manning as 'a controversial writer on South Africa'.[10] This remark is expanded with the comment that 'Manning always insisted, with some passion, that scientific detachment [in his academic role] did not, and must not, mean refusal to commit oneself to causes in the political area, when laboratory coat and academic gown are doffed, and Manning did commit himself to at least one such cause, that of South Africa and its regime. But scientific inquiry and political partisanship were at all times rigidly separated from each other in his mind, and only linked in so far as the political partisan, the committed voter in a democratic election or the professional politician, enact their chosen roles the better after serving their time as non-partisan students of the world in which their partisanship subsequently does its work.'[11]

Personal life

Manning married Marion Somerville (Maisie) Johnston, a former pupil, in 1939; Marion predeceased him in 1977.[12][13] There were no children.[14] He retired to South Africa in September 1977.[15]

His recreations included watercolour, gardening, and music.[16]


1. F.S. Northedge, 'In Memoriam Charles Manning 1894-1978', British Journal of International Studies, 5 : 1, April 1979, pg.1 : ... b_contents.
2. Christian Reus-Smit, Duncan Snidal (2008) The Oxford handbook of international relations, Oxford: Oxford University Press, P. 267
3. Who's Who 1974, London : A. & C. Black, 1974, pg.2158.
4. Who's Who 1974, London : A. & C. Black, 1974, pg.2158
5. Who's Who 1974, London : A. & C. Black, 1974, pg.2158
6. Who's Who 1974, London : A. & C. Black, 1974, pg.2158
7. F.S. Northedge, 'In Memoriam Charles Manning 1894-1978', British Journal of International Studies, 5 : 1, April 1979, pg.1 : ... b_contents.
8. Who's Who 1974, London : A. & C. Black, 1974, pg.2158
9. H.G. Hanbury, 'Professor C.A.W. Manning', Times (London, England), 15 March 1978, p. 21.
10. F.S. Northedge, 'In Memoriam Charles Manning 1894-1978', British Journal of International Studies, 5:1, April 1979, p. 1: ... b_contents.
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Fri Jun 28, 2019 8:29 am

Part 1 of 2

3: Everything That Was Good in Us, Excerpt from The Lives of Freda: The Political, Spiritual and Personal Journeys of Freda Bedi
by Andrew Whitehead

3: Everything That Was Good in Us

Freda and Bedi made public their engagement early in 1933, in their penultimate term at Oxford. 'This was' -- she said -- 'a minor sensation'. It was certainly front-page news for the Oxford Mail, which published a photograph of the couple, apparently taken in the parks with both wearing scarves to keep out the winter cold. [1] Word also reached the student journal Isis. Its 'Dovecotes' gossip column, with its ear to the ground at the women's colleges, reported that both Freda and Bedi 'are, of course, prominent members of the October Club. Miss Houlston, who wears a very lovely acquamarine solitaire on her ring finger, told me ... that they will be married soon after Schools [final exams] and that they will live in India, where she hopes to carve out for herself a career in the writing of books about that land of mystery and promise, henceforth her own.' [2] Even at this early date, long before she had ever set foot there, Freda was coming to regard India as her country.

The couple had friends and allies among the academic community in Oxford -- notably Professor Alfred Zimmern and his wife, Lucie, of whom Freda had written so fondly in her article for the Calcutta Review. That affection was clearly reciprocated. Among the Zimmern papers at the Bodleian Library, amid letters from the prime minister, arrangements for summer schools in Switzerland and a mass of academic correspondence, is a postcard sent from 'Freda and Bedi' to Madame Zimmern in May 1933. 'Your "naughty children" want to see you. When could we come during this week?' The Zimmerns were away, so Freda followed up with a longer missive:

This is just a small note literally on the eve of Schools to tell you that our marriage has been fixed for June 21st at 11.30 A.M. My mother and father are coming up for it, but unfortunately my brother will be on the sea 'somewhere off Scotland.' We are both of us very disappointed that he can't come.

We are dividing our time at present between the last revision for Schools, and a search for a flat as we intend remaining a few weeks here until the Viva is over ...

We shall remember you both on the 21st-and hope you will remember us. [3]

Both Freda and Bedi signed the note.

'Barely a week after finishing Final Schools,' Freda wrote a decade later, 'we were married in the dark and poky little Oxford Registry Office. The registrar looked sour and pointedly omitted to shake hands with us. We came out, with my parents and a cousin from India, into a drenching downpour of rain ... "Don't worry," said my husband. "Rain is auspicious for an Indian bride."' [4] A photograph on the front page of the Oxford Mail showed Baba Bedi, wearing jacket and tie and pugri-style turban, holding an umbrella over his new wife. 'The bride, a tall slim girl, looked charming in blue and white, the dress having the merest suggestion of white epaulettes. She wore a small white cap at a fashionable angle and had a buttonhole of carnations.' [5] The Derby Evening Telegraph reported that the couple were planning to honeymoon in Italy before moving to Berlin and eventually settling in Lahore. 'They refused to discuss their plans and shunned publicity.' [6] As well as Freda's mother and stepfather, the other family member in attendance was Kuldip Chand Bedi, the groom's cousin, who later also married an English woman; few if any of their Oxford friends were present. There was a 'very simple' wedding breakfast -- 'we both decided that we were not going to have a big party or make a fuss' -- and then the newlyweds went back to Bedi's lodgings.

Freda believed that she was the first Oxford woman undergraduate to marry an Indian fellow student. Plenty of Indians had married British women, but not fellow students. The India Office in London had a file of unhappy letters from British women, often from a working class background, complaining that they had been deserted by their Indian husbands, who had returned home at the end of their studies promising to arrange for their brides to join them since when there had been silence. [7] Both Hindus and Muslims in India were at this time covered by a code of personal law which meant that they could marry in England even if they already had a wife in India, and could return with their English wife and take another wife. Seeking to annul a marriage in these circumstances was not straightforward. The Lord Chancellor's office proposed to set-up what was insensitively referred to as 'the Polygamy Committee' to address the issue, but all that was done was to urge registrars to warn would-be brides of the potential legal peril.

Tucked away in an India Office file is a cutting from a tabloid-style news magazine warning of the consequences of falling for a suave Indian student. It bore the headline: "The Lure of the Coloured Man: terrible dangers of bogus romance exposed'. [8] Scores of 'handsome' Indian students at British universities married British girls every year, the article suggested. 'In the majority of cases these men are already married to Hindu girls.' There was a parallel, if less alarmist, discussion of mixed marriages in Indian student publications. 'Not in bitterness against English women, but just as a statement of fact, it is fair to record that Indian students leaving India are warned by their parents and relatives to keep away from the women of this country,' wrote an Indian student at Oxford. "This warning is based on the consequences of marriage between Indians of social position and English women who are not equal to the situation in education, wisdom and culture -- to put it as mildly and politely as one can.' [9] On both sides, attitudes to an inter-racial romance were hardly encouraging.

'By all social laws and canons,' Freda wrote, 'it was a marriage doomed to failure'--

two students in love, refusing to recognise the barriers of race and colour, dissolving their religious differences into a belief in a common Good, united in their love of justice and freedom for the least and poorest.

... In the eyes of the world, a wild marriage without financial foundations, without social foundations, or orthodox religious foundations. In our eyes, the only marriage we could either of us bear to think about, a marriage based on everything that was good in us. [10]

As she wrote those lines ten years or so after her marriage, Freda must have been thinking back to the hostility that she and Bedi faced, and the personal crisis it provoked. However 'wild' her marriage, she was determined to make it work. Having breached the barriers of race and religion, she would not allow any of her detractors to say: I told you so.

While the racial and cultural differences between the couple were the most obvious, they also had contrasting temperaments. Bedi was large, loud, gregarious and a natural raconteur; Freda was quieter, more contained, with a personal warmth but -- at this stage of her life -- not as outgoing. They both had an impulsive streak; of the two, Freda was the more disciplined and determined. There was a class difference too. While Bedi was not as privileged by background as some Indian students at Oxford, he had grown up knowing and expecting deference. However much he may have sought to disavow this sense of inherited entitlement, traces of it remained. Bedi was also, at their marriage, much the more cosmopolitan of the two. He had been taught by Britishers in Lahore. He had travelled widely on his way to Oxford. Freda hadn't got to know any Indians, probably hadn't rubbed shoulders with any, prior to coming to Oxford, and at the end of her years there had not travelled beyond western Europe. One had seen something of the world; the other was yearning to do so.

Freda and Bedi began their married life in his room at Summertown in north Oxford. They had to wait and see if they had a viva, an oral exam sometimes required if the written papers left some uncertainty about the class of degree to be awarded. Both would have been disappointed by their degrees. Freda's 'third' was at least one step up from Bedi's fourth class honours, a classification which no longer exists and suggests a bare sufficiency of the requirements for an honours degree.

This academic setback didn't dampen Bedi's ambition to study for a doctorate. He secured a research scholarship -- in Berlin. By the summer of 1933, Hitler was already Germany's Chancellor and the Nazis were consolidating their hold on power. In July, they became the only legal political party. The communists, a mass party in Germany which attracted millions of votes, were an early target of the Nazis. They were forced underground-their leadership, and many of their elected representatives, were arrested. The German capital was not a comfortable prospect for a mixed race couple with a record of communist activity. 'The great question was: should we go? -- because the menace of fascism was then becoming very real,' Freda recalled. Her new husband thought it was worth the risk.

They decided to make their way to Germany in a leisurely manner, and to have a honeymoon holidaying across Europe with Berlin the final destination. It was a honeymoon with a difference -- Freda and Bedi travelled with a friend, an Indian from East Africa who had a car and was a keen driver. 'So we three, with a couple of tents, wandered around Europe -- in France and Belgium and Germany, Czechoslovakia, Austria, Hungary, Italy. We had a really beautiful car-and-tent tour.' One striking photo in the family album shows the couple on the beach in bathing suits. In mid-August, Freda sent a postcard from Italy to her college friend Olive Chandler. 'Tour all OK. Very brown + well. I like Venice but it's xxxx hot. Am leaving later for Dolomites + Austria (Vienna). Thence to Germany.' Her forwarding address was the Thomas Cook's office in the heart of Berlin. [11]

The newlyweds arrived in the German capital a few weeks later and Bedi formally enrolled at university in October. By then, Freda was pregnant. They managed to get a quiet place to live a little out of the centre towards Potsdam, bordering the Wannsee lakes. 'It was a really lovely place -- a charming German cottage with a lovely garden, and we had some very very happy months there preparing for the child.' This was their focus -- getting ready for the start of a family so early in their married life. Politics took a back seat, though as Hitler tightened his grip on power, the signs of racial intolerance were evident all around.

We led a very simple life. Sometimes we used to go to the big markets on Alexanderplatz to buy cheap fruit and vegetables and I remember one day coming back triumphantly with some beautiful Jaffa oranges and presented a plate-full to my landlady. But she turned up her nose and said: I don't eat Jewish oranges. So then I found out that the landlady was also a Nazi, which I didn't know before. It was all around us. [12]

She ventured to the university for her first lessons in Hindi from a Punjabi professor. 'In our class there were just three people -- two elderly ladies, one a representative of the German aristocracy, and one, although I didn't know, the wife of a Nazi. But both charming women. Politics never entered into our lives, we were just learning Hindi and we were trying to understand something at the same time of Indian philosophy.'

Another pressing priority was establishing a relationship, albeit at a distance, with her widowed mother-in-law, who spoke no English. Freda was clear from the start that with an Indian husband, she was now Indian too. After her wedding day, she made a point of dressing in Indian clothes -- often a sari, not the simplest of garments to wear. Her letters to Bhabooji, the family's name for Bedi's mother, display the charm and emotional intelligence which served her so well throughout her life. Writing in early October 1933, when Berlin must have been arrestingly new, Freda told her mother-in-law that 'our life seems to be taking on a more solid + peaceful complexion again. I will write to you as regularly as I can. It is a very great pleasure to me that you want me to write and if it gives my dear Mother pleasure I shall be delighted to do so.' She wrote of the regret in having to wait another year before meeting her Indian family, her love for her husband, and their plans for 'a quiet and studious life' in Berlin as a preparation for their work in India. [13]

What Bedi's mother would have been seeking is some sense of whether her new daughter-in-law would fit in with her Indian family or would lead her son away from it. She will have found Freda's letters reassuring:

you will want to know the little details of our life. They mean so much to a woman, I know. I am like it myself. I wear my Saree as often as I can, and only when we are leading a particularly strenuous life, as in camping or househunting, do I leave it of[ I have some amusing experiences. I wore it on all the frontiers and received an undue amount of deference from Customs officials; I wore it in towns and every waiter in the restaurant came to my feet ... I am very fond of wearing the Saree. Pyare tried to teach me himself, but being a man, he did not at all understand how women do it (bless him!) and so I was taught both by an Indian girl student at Oxford, + particularly by a very nice Indian lady, Mrs Haji ... who was visiting London

And as a further affectionate touch, Freda signed her name in Punjabi script.

A month later, the dutiful daughter-in-law was writing again -- about the warm underwear that she made sure Bedi wore to guard against the chilly Berlin winter and the sweater that her mother was knitting him for Christmas.

Now about the most important thing. You will have read in PL's letter about the baby. I am very, very happy about it, as is natural, because I love PL so much. So you will have a small grandchild to spoil when we come back to India. There is a great deal of preparation to be made, and this is all the heavier because I am alone in Berlin, separated from both you and my own mother. But it will be a labour of love.

'This is a very long letter', she concluded, 'and whoever translates it to you will have a lot of trouble. But I expect you like letters as long as possible.' [14]

Alongside Freda's personal and emotional ties to India was a political and intellectual commitment. She saw her marriage to Bedi as in part a shared collaboration; their purpose was to support India's freedom movement by personal advocacy and by creating wider awareness of the nationalist case. This joint endeavour took firm root in Oxford and persisted in Berlin and by the time the couple left the German capital they had served as the originators and editors of an impressive series of books about contemporary India, an achievement the more remarkable given that both editors were in their early twenties and one had never stepped on Indian soil.

Their first title was a selection of Gandhi's writings published in 1933 as a slim volume of eighty pages. It was in German and with a preface by a renowned Protestant theologian Rudolf Otto. The book bore the title Gandhi: Der Heilige und der Staatsmann, (Gandhi: the saint and the statesman). Freda and Bedi selected the items, which were variously spiritual and campaigning in tone, and wrote an introduction dated November 1932, early in their final academic year in Oxford. How it came about, and how it was received, is unclear -- it could well have been at Alfred Zimmern's initiative. Of all their writings, this is the title most easily available in the original edition -- so it seems to have sold well.

India was one of the primary concerns of both the Cecil Bloc and Milner Group. The latter probably devoted more time and attention to India than to any other subject. This situation reached its peak in 1919, and the Government of India Act of that year is very largely a Milner Group measure in conception, formation, and execution....

The decade 1919-1929 was chiefly occupied with efforts to get Gandhi to permit the Indian National Congress to cooperate in the affairs of government, so that its members and other Indians could acquire the necessary experience to allow the progressive realization of self-government. The Congress Party, as we have said, boycotted the elections of 1920 and cooperated in those of 1924 only for the purpose of wrecking them. Nonetheless, the system worked, with the support of moderate groups, and the British extended one right after another in steady succession. Fiscal autonomy was granted to India in 1921, and that country at once adopted a protective tariff, to the considerable injury of British textile manufacturing. The superior Civil Services were opened to Indians in 1924. Indians were admitted to Woolwich and Sandhurst in the same year, and commissions in the Indian Army were made available to them.

The appointment of Baron Irwin of the Milner Group to be Viceroy in 1926 — an appointment in which, according to A. C. Johnson's biography Viscount Halifax (1941), "the influence of Geoffrey Dawson and other members of The Times' editorial staff" may have played a decisive role — was the chief step in the effort to achieve some real progress under the Act of 1919 before that Act came under the critical examination of another Royal Commission, scheduled for 1929. The new Viceroy's statement of policy, made in India, 17 July 1926, was, according to the same source, embraced by The Times in an editorial "which showed in no uncertain terms that Irwin's policy was appreciated and underwritten by Printing House Square."

Unfortunately, in the period 1924-1931 the India Office was not in control of either the Milner Group or Cecil Bloc. For various reasons, of which this would seem to be the most important, coordination between the Secretary of State and the Viceroy and between Britain and the Indian nationalists broke down at the most crucial moments….

The Indian States had remained as backward, feudalistic, and absolutist enclaves, within the territorial extent of British India and bound to the British Raj by individual treaties and agreements. As might be expected from the Milner Group, the solution which they proposed was federation. They hoped that devolution in British India would secure a degree of provincial autonomy that would make it possible to bind the provinces and the Indian States within the same federal structure and with similar local autonomy. However, the Group knew that the Indian States could not easily be federated with British India until their systems of government were raised to some approximation of the same level. For this reason, and to win the Princes over to federation, Lord Irwin had a large number of personal consultations with the Princes in 1927 and 1928. At some of these he lectured the Princes on the principles of good government in a fashion which came straight from the basic ideology of the Milner Group. The memorandum which he presented to them, dated 14 June 1927 and published in Johnson's biography, Viscount Halifax, could have been written by the Kindergarten. This can be seen in its definitions of the function of government, its emphasis on the reign of law, its advocacy of devolution, its homily on the duty of princes, its separation of responsibility in government from democracy in government, and its treatment of democracy as an accidental rather than an essential characteristic of good government.  

The value of this preparatory work appeared at the first Round Table Conference, where, contrary to all expectations, the Indian Princes accepted federation. The optimism resulting from this agreement was, to a considerable degree, dissipated, however, by the refusal of Gandhi's party to participate in the conference unless India were granted full and immediate Dominion status. Refusal of these terms resulted in an outburst of political activity which made it necessary for Irwin to find jails capable of holding sixty thousand Indian agitators at one time. …  

From 1939 on, constitutional progress in India was blocked by a double stalemate: (1) the refusal of the Congress Party to cooperate in government unless the British abandoned India completely, something which could not be done while the Japanese were invading Burma; and (2) the growing refusal of the Moslem League to cooperate with the Congress Party on any basis except partition of India and complete autonomy for the areas with Moslem majorities. The Milner Group, and the British government generally, by 1940 had given up all hope of any successful settlement except complete self-government for India, but it could not give up to untried hands complete control of defense policy during the war. At the same time, the Milner Group generally supported Moslem demands because of its usual emphasis on minority rights.

During this period the Milner Group remained predominant in Indian affairs, although the Viceroy (Lord Linlithgow) was not a member of the Group. The Secretary of State for India, however, was Leopold Amery for the whole period 1940-1945. A number of efforts were made to reach agreement with the Congress Party, but the completely unrealistic attitude of the party's leaders, especially Gandhi, made this impossible. In 1941, H. V. Hodson, by that time one of the most important members of the Milner Group, was made Reforms Commissioner for India. The following year the most important effort to break the Indian stalemate was made. This was the Cripps Mission, whose chief adviser was Sir Reginald Coupland, another member of the inner circle of the Milner Group. As a result of the failure of this mission and of the refusal of the Indians to believe in the sincerity of the British (a skepticism that was completely without basis), the situation dragged on until after the War. The election of 1945, which drove the Conservative Party from office, also removed the Milner Group from its positions of influence. The subsequent events, including complete freedom for India and the division of the country into two Dominions within the British Commonwealth, were controlled by new hands, but the previous actions of the Milner Group had so committed the situation that these new hands had no possibility (nor, indeed, desire) to turn the Indian problem into new paths. There can be little doubt that with the Milner Group still in control the events of 1945-1948 in respect to India would have differed only in details.

The history of British relations with India in the twentieth century was disastrous. In this history the Milner Group played a major role. To be sure, the materials with which they had to work were intractable and they had inconvenient obstacles at home (like the diehards within the Conservative Party), but these problems were made worse by the misconceptions about India and about human beings held by the Milner Group. The bases on which they built their policy were fine — indeed, too fine. These bases were idealistic, almost Utopian, to a degree which made it impossible for them to grow and function and made it highly likely that forces of ignorance and barbarism would be released, with results exactly contrary to the desires of the Milner Group. On the basis of love of liberty, human rights, minority guarantees, and self- responsibility, the Milner Group took actions that broke down the lines of external authority in Indian society faster than any lines of internal self-discipline were being created. It is said that the road to perdition is paved with good intentions. The road to the Indian tragedy of 1947-1948 was also paved with good intentions, and those paving blocks were manufactured and laid down by the Milner Group. The same good intentions contributed largely to the dissolution of the British Empire, the race wars of South Africa, and the unleashing of the horrors of 1939-1945 on the world.

To be sure, in India as elsewhere, the Milner Group ran into bad luck for which they were not responsible. The chief case of this in India was the Amritsar Massacre of 1919, which was probably the chief reason for Gandhi's refusal to cooperate in carrying out the constitutional reforms of that same year. But the Milner Group's policies were self-inconsistent and were unrealistic. For example, they continually insisted that the parliamentary system was not fitted to Indian conditions, yet they made no real effort to find a more adaptive political system, and every time they gave India a further dose of self-government, it was always another dose of the parliamentary system. But, clinging to their beliefs, they loaded down this system with special devices which hampered it from functioning as a parliamentary system should. The irony of this whole procedure rests in the fact that the minority of agitators in India who wanted self-government wanted it on the parliamentary pattern and regarded every special device and every statement from Britain that it was not adapted to Indian conditions as an indication of the insincerity in the British desire to grant self-government to India.

A second error arises from the Milner Group's lack of enthusiasm for democracy. Democracy, as a form of government, involves two parts: (1) majority rule and (2) minority rights. Because of the Group's lack of faith in democracy, they held no brief for the first of these but devoted all their efforts toward achieving the second. The result was to make the minority uncompromising, at the same time that they diminished the majority's faith in their own sincerity. In India the result was to make the Moslem League almost completely obstructionist and make the Congress Party almost completely suspicious. The whole policy encouraged extremists and discouraged moderates. This appears at its worst in the systems of communal representation and communal electorates established in India by Britain. The Milner Group knew these were bad, but felt that they were a practical necessity in order to preserve minority rights. In this they were not only wrong, as proved by history, but were sacrificing principle to expediency in a way that can never be permitted by a group whose actions claim to be so largely dictated by principle. To do this weakens the faith of others in the group's principles.

-- The Anglo-American Establishment: From Rhodes to Cliveden, by Carroll Quigley

Emboldened perhaps by this initial venture into print, the couple moved on to a much more ambitious project: India Analysed. 'At that time the Round Table Conference was on and I felt that something on India must be projected,' Bedi recalled; 'by that time I had met Freda my future wife and we were collaborating intellectually. It was a joy working with her and we planned together.' [15] They approached Victor Gollancz, London's leading left-wing publisher, who agreed to a series of volumes about India. Freda and Bedi were the joint editors and enlisted renowned academics and experts in Britain and India to provide rigorous articles about India's place in international institutions, its economy, trade and fiscal situation. Four volumes were planned, each containing five essays -- though the final volume on constitutional issues never appeared.

Gollancz had an impressive list, and at this time was publishing books of such renown as J.B. Priestley's English journey and Vera Brittain's Testament of Youth as well as a wide range of current affairs tides. In all, they published upwards of a hundred books a year. India did not greatly feature, so India Analysed filled a gap. The editors dedicated all three volumes to 'the Oxford University Gandhi Group in whose discussions the need for this series was realised'. The goal, they explained, was to offer a picture of present-day India:

We have attempted to provide an interesting and detailed account of the Indian situation to-day, and the forces that have gone to make it up, but an account that is neither too technical nor lacking in general interest. It is intended first and foremost for the man with an intelligent interest in Indian affairs who is not satisfied with the scrappy and often biased accounts he finds in the newspapers; and secondly for the student who will only find such material by spending time he can ill afford among a pile of Indian journals. [16]

They certainly aimed high in the contributors they enlisted. Their friend and mentor Alfred Zimmern, Oxford's first professor of international relations, had pole position in the first volume, writing on 'India and the world situation'. His counterpart at the London School of Economics, C.A.W. Manning, examined 'India and the League of Nations'. Both were big names but not -- as they conceded -- specialists on India. Only one of the five contributors was himself Indian. This seems to be what annoyed a reviewer on a Lahore daily paper, who found the essays 'ponderous', 'cursory' and 'superficial', and 'done from an angle of vision with which majority of Indians will not see eye to eye'. [17]

Looking to the contributors to the second volume, predominantly academics who were themselves Indian, this Lahore-based critic was confident that they would provide 'a truer picture of India and her ills, which had been mostly manufactured for us by an unsympathetic oligarchy for the betterment of their own people at the expense of India and Indians'. These writers indeed displayed greater expertise, and broadly shared the nationalist perspective of the reviewer. While the tone of the volumes was progressive, this was by the standards of the October Club very mild fare. Some of the contributors were on the left, but there was no hint of communism or revolution in India Analysed. That's unlikely to have been at the publisher's behest, as Gollancz published several Marxist and communist writers, but the choice of the editors. Their aim with these volumes was more to inform than to agitate; to create an awareness of India's current difficulties, particularly economic and fiscal, which in turn would help shape discussion about the country's future.
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

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Part 2 of 2

The tone of India Analysed became more partisan over time, as any hopes vested in the Round Table conferences faded. Brij Narain, writing about currency in the third volume, asserted that the history of the rupee's exchange rate provided 'a good illustration of the conflict between British and Indian interests which has been the chief feature of our economic life in recent years. ... We [i.e. India] believe that we are the best judges of what is good for US.' [18] Another professor of economics, K.T. Shah, railed against the iniquity of imposing a financial burden on India to meet the costs of British wars and military endeavours. 'Mr Gandhi proclaimed, at the Round Table Conference, that India would pay with the last drop of her blood whatever was found justly to be due from her. But she cannot be asked, in fairness, to shoulder burdens which are not hers in reality, which were imposed upon her originally as a piece of injustice and inequity, and which afford no proportionate benefit to the people of India.' [19] This was a more assertive style of Indian nationalism assembling its intellectual armoury.

A multi-author project, especially with such eminent academics across two continents, would have been daunting and enormously time consuming: the process of commissioning, chasing, editing and arranging the chapters would have been anything but straightforward and Gollancz would have expected disciplined observance of the publication timetable. Freda and Bedi received no advance from the publishers, but as they were editors rather than the authors that was perhaps not surprising. For them, this was not about making money but about serving a cause. Even more, it was the joy and camaraderie of a shared project. This was, in the most literal of meanings, a labour of love. They must have used every sinew of their contacts, and of the address books of their academic friends, to attract such a rollcall of contributors, and it would also have been a huge distraction from their academic studies.

The proofs of the first volume of India Analysed, devoted to the country's international standing, reached the editors at the end of May 1933, as Freda and Bedi were preparing for their finals exams -- and for their wedding. Nevertheless, the book was ready to go to press just ten days later, and it was published in July -- at about the time that the couple were heading off on honeymoon. [20] The subsequent two volumes followed promptly. In the second volume, devoted to economic facts, Freda used her married name. The preface was written from Berlin on 5th October 1933 -- the same day as Freda's letter to her mother-in-law. The couple put the finishing touches to the third volume, about 'economic issues', in April 1934 -- by which time Freda was eight months pregnant. It appeared at about the time the Bedis and their newborn son were on their way to India. It is a tribute to their determination and resilience that they saw through these three volumes amid the turbulence of exams, moving countries, getting married and having a baby.

The series didn't attract much attention in Britain, which may have been disappointing to the editors but given the dry, academic tone of India Analysed was perhaps not surprising. The stridently nationalist temper, particularly of the third and final volume, did not however go unnoticed. It attracted a long and-hostile review in the Times of India, which argued that the essays were out of date, incomplete, biased and unduly pessimistic. [21] India Analysed had adopted an unspoken but very evident nationalist perspective, carefully argued though at times with a polemical edge. This was clearly not to the liking of those happy to place confidence in the benevolence of Imperial rule.

Seeing through all three volumes of India Analysed would have been a drain on the time of both Freda and Bedi, but it also must have given them status within the Indian student community in Berlin. Not many students in pursuit of a doctorate had such an impressive list of publications to their name. Berlin was, in the late twenties and early thirties, one of the commanding European capitals, bursting with intellectual energy. Some Indian students preferred it to London, not least because they wanted to escape the embrace of an Empire to which they were opposed. There was also an Indian emigre community in the German capital, politically engaged in ending Imperialism and sometimes working alongside Germany's powerful Communist Party. The rise of Hitler's national socialists changed all this -- but not overnight.

Bedi's research scholarship at the old-established Friedrich Wilhelm Universitat (now the Humboldt University) brought him a modest stipend of 110 Reichsmark a month, supplemented by financial support from his older brother. His research topic was about the development of classes and castes in India under the supervision of one of Europe's most renowned economists and sociologists of the time, Werner Sombart. [22] The university was popular among Indians studying in Europe. Zakir Husain, later independent India's first Muslim president, was awarded a doctorate there in the 1920s. Ram Manohar Lohia, who went on to become a commanding figure in Indian socialism, was a doctoral student at the university until early 1933.23 There was in the early 1930s an active network of left-wing and nationalist Indians in Berlin -- and of informers passing word of who was doing and saying what back to the British authorities. The British embassy in Berlin kept a close eye on the activities of Indian students and the Indian police were keen that nationalist students should not be forced out of the city, as that would disrupt the flow of intelligence. The League Against Imperialism, established in 1927 on the initiative of communists and with the active support of Nehru and the Indian National Congress, was based in Berlin until it was raided at the end of 1931. This was an important initiative aimed at creating links between nationalist movements in countries such as India, China and South Africa, western socialists who were campaigning for 'colonial freedom' and the international communist movement, and while it eventually dissolved amid political and factional recrimination, it was the sort of initiative which put the British authorities on edge.

By the time Freda and Bedi headed to Berlin there were clear indications of the worsening political atmosphere. There was a book burning at the university in May 1933, a portent of political and academic intolerance. Even more alarming, a few weeks earlier A.C.N. Nambiar was arrested, and also roughed-by by members of the Hitler Youth. He was a journalist and long-term resident of Germany who had been the administrator of the Indian Information Bureau, the rallying point for the Indian left in Berlin. The British ambassador felt obliged to protest about the ill-treatment of this British national, albeit one who was working against British rule in India. [24]

The prospect of a child and the changing political climate in Berlin discouraged Bedi from any sort of political activism which might attract the attention of the authorities. But his social circle certainly included Indian nationalists living in or passing through Berlin. Both he and Freda got to know Subhas Chandra Bose, the key figure on the radical wing of the Indian National Congress, and when in India they both published an article by him and publicly defended him from accusations of fascism. [25]

BPL refrained from any political activity in Germany, although he was keeping up-to-date with the Free India movement in India. A frequent visitor to their lakeside cottage was Subhas Chandra Bose, who went on to become one of the most prominent and controversial leaders of the independence movement. Bose was educated at Cambridge and also had a European wife – Emilie Schenkl, an Austrian. He made it a point to visit sympathetic Indian students living in Europe, and the couple had much in common with Freda and BPL Bedi.

“We came to know Bose intimately, and a deep friendship grew,” said BPL. Bose was a hard-core communist, a great admirer of the Soviet Union, who maintained that only an authoritarian state, not democracy, would be able to reshape India. (Later he was forced to resign as present of the Indian National Congress because his platform of violent resistance clashed with Gandhi’s peaceful pathway.)

In Germany, however, Bose, won the young BPL over completely. “Freda and I were both fired up with the patriotic zeal of liberating the motherland from British imperialism,” BPL said. “While we were in Berlin, an eminent journalist asked me what was my agenda for India. ‘Live dangerously,’ I replied. ‘Live dangerously for every form of exploitation of man by man. Live dangerously for every form of injustice. Live dangerously for any violation of human dignity.’”

-- The Revolutionary Life of Freda Bedi, by Vicki Mackenzie

1941–1943: Nazi Germany

Bose greeting Heinrich Himmler (right), the Nazi Minister of Interior, head of the SS, and the Gestapo, 1942.

Subhas Bose meeting Adolf Hitler

Bose's arrest and subsequent release set the scene for his escape to Germany, via Afghanistan and the Soviet Union. A few days before his escape, he sought solitude and, on this pretext, avoided meeting British guards and grew a beard. Late night 16 January 1941, the night of his escape, he dressed as a Pathan (brown long coat, a black fez-type coat and broad pyjamas) to avoid being identified. Bose escaped from under British surveillance from his Elgin Road house in Calcutta about 01:25AM on 17 January 1941, accompanied by his nephew Sisir Kumar Bose in a German-made Wanderer W24 Sedan car, which would take him to Gomoh Railway Station in then state of Bihar, India. The car (Registration No. BLA 7169) was bought by Subhash Chandra Bose's elder brother Sarat Chandra Bose in 1937. The car is now on display at his Elgin Road home in Calcutta, India.[53][54][55][56] He journeyed to Peshawar with the help of the Abwehr, where he was met by Akbar Shah, Mohammed Shah and Bhagat Ram Talwar. Bose was taken to the home of Abad Khan, a trusted friend of Akbar Shah's. On 26 January 1941, Bose began his journey to reach Russia through British India's North West frontier with Afghanistan. For this reason, he enlisted the help of Mian Akbar Shah, then a Forward Bloc leader in the North-West Frontier Province. Shah had been out of India en route to the Soviet Union, and suggested a novel disguise for Bose to assume. Since Bose could not speak one word of Pashto, it would make him an easy target of Pashto speakers working for the British. For this reason, Shah suggested that Bose act deaf and dumb, and let his beard grow to mimic those of the tribesmen. Bose's guide Bhagat Ram Talwar, unknown to him, was a Soviet agent.[55][56][57] [b]

Supporters of the Aga Khan III helped him across the border into Afghanistan where he was met by an Abwehr unit posing as a party of road construction engineers from the Organization Todt who then aided his passage across Afghanistan via Kabul to the border with Soviet Russia. After assuming the guise of a Pashtun insurance agent ("Ziaudddin") to reach Afghanistan, Bose changed his guise and travelled to Moscow on the Italian passport of an Italian nobleman "Count Orlando Mazzotta". From Moscow, he reached Rome, and from there he travelled to Germany.[55][56][58] Once in Russia the NKVD transported Bose to Moscow where he hoped that Russia's traditional enmity to British rule in India would result in support for his plans for a popular rising in India. However, Bose found the Soviets' response disappointing and was rapidly passed over to the German Ambassador in Moscow, Count von der Schulenburg. He had Bose flown on to Berlin in a special courier aircraft at the beginning of April where he was to receive a more favourable hearing from Joachim von Ribbentrop and the Foreign Ministry officials at the Wilhelmstrasse.[55][56][59] In Germany, he was attached to the Special Bureau for India under Adam von Trott zu Solz which was responsible for broadcasting on the German-sponsored Azad Hind Radio.[60] He founded the Free India Center in Berlin, and created the Indian Legion (consisting of some 4500 soldiers) out of Indian prisoners of war who had previously fought for the British in North Africa prior to their capture by Axis forces. The Indian Legion was attached to the Wehrmacht, and later transferred to the Waffen SS. Its members swore the following allegiance to Hitler and Bose: "I swear by God this holy oath that I will obey the leader of the German race and state, Adolf Hitler, as the commander of the German armed forces in the fight for India, whose leader is Subhas Chandra Bose". This oath clearly abrogates control of the Indian legion to the German armed forces whilst stating Bose's overall leadership of India. He was also, however, prepared to envisage an invasion of India via the USSR by Nazi troops, spearheaded by the Azad Hind Legion; many have questioned his judgment here, as it seems unlikely that the Germans could have been easily persuaded to leave after such an invasion, which might also have resulted in an Axis victory in the War.[58]

-- Subhas Chandra Bose, by Wikipedia

For Indian leftists, impatient with what they saw as the quietism of Gandhi and his allies within the Congress and demanding a more militant form of nationalism and anti-Imperialism, the rise of a race-based populist nationalism caught the eye. When in Lahore, B.P.L. Bedi wrote about the Hitler Youth in a style more descriptive than denunciatory, explaining why Hitler put such importance in organising young Germans and how he had managed to attract four million youngsters into his youth wing. [26] At the time of Bedi's stay in Berlin, his supervisor Werner Sombart -- who had once spoken of himself as a convinced Marxist -- published Deutscher Sozialismus ('German Socialism', though the English translation was published as A New Social Philosophy). This clearly looked to the Nazi party to achieve a new style of socialism which placed 'the welfare of the whole above the welfare of the individual'. Sombart asserted that "'a new spirit" is beginning to rule mankind'. There could be 'no universally valid social order but only one that is suited to a particular nation' -- and German socialism required that 'the individual as a citizen will have no rights but only duties.' [27]

During the Weimar Republic, Sombart moved toward nationalism, and his relation to Nazism is still debated today.

In 1934 he published Deutscher Sozialismus where he claimed a "new spirit" was beginning to "rule mankind". The age of capitalism and proletarian socialism was over, with "German socialism" (National-Socialism) taking over. This German socialism puts the "welfare of the whole above the welfare of the individual".[11] German socialism must effect a "total ordering of life" with a "planned economy in accordance with state regulations".[12] The new legal system will confer on individuals "no rights but only duties" and that "the state should never evaluate individual persons as such, but only the group which represents these persons".[13] German socialism is accompanied by the Volksgeist (national spirit) which is not racial in the biological sense but metaphysical: "the German spirit in a Negro is quite as much within the realm of possibility as the Negro spirit in a German".[14] The antithesis of the German spirit is the Jewish spirit, which is not a matter of being born Jewish or believing in Judaism but is a capitalistic spirit.[15] The English people possess the Jewish spirit and the "chief task" of the German people and National Socialism is to destroy the Jewish spirit.[15]

-- Werner Sombart, by Wikipedia

Freda seems to have imbibed something of this indulgence of totalitarianism. In a review of books about European fascism, she expressed understanding -- sympathy almost -- for the rise of National Socialism. 'Germany is making a determined fight for equality and national self-respect,' she declared. 'Her desire for equal arms is only an expression of it -- she has no desire to make war.' And citing her 'year of observation in Nazi Germany', she argued that one of the authors had misunderstood his topic:

He has judged Germany by the standards of democratic countries. He has seen very clearly the German love of organization, of uniform and of bands. But he has not rightly understood that the passion for discipline in Germany is a question of internal order, something ingrained in the cleanly, thorough German character -- and not an expression of an agressive [sic] spirit that is a danger to European peace. [28]

It was, alas, Freda who had failed to understand the character of German fascism.

As a chief figure in Salisbury's efforts to bolster up the Ottoman Empire against Russia, D'Abernon had always been anti-Russian. In this respect, his background was like Curzon's. As a result of the Warsaw mission, D'Abernon's anti-Russian feeling was modified to an anti-Bolshevik one of much greater intensity. To him the obvious solution seemed to be to build up Germany as a military bulwark against the Soviet Union. He said as much in a letter of 11 August 1920 to Sir Maurice Hankey. This letter, printed by D'Abernon in his book on the Battle of Warsaw (The Eighteenth Decisive Battle of the World, published 1931), suggests that "a good bargain might be made with the German military leaders in cooperating against the Soviet." Shortly afterwards, D'Abernon was made British Ambassador at Berlin. At the time, it was widely rumored and never denied that he had been appointed primarily to obtain some settlement of the reparations problem, it being felt that his wide experience in international public finance would qualify him for this work. This may have been so, but his prejudices likewise qualified him for only one solution to the problem, the one desired by the Germans. (5)

In reaching this solution, D'Abernon acted as the intermediary among Stresemann, the German Chancellor; Curzon, the Foreign Secretary; and, apparently, Kindersley, Brand's associate at Lazard Brothers. According to Harold Nicolson in his book Curzon The Last Phase (1934), "The initial credit for what proved the ultimate solution belongs, in all probability, to Lord D'Abernon — one of the most acute and broad-minded diplomatists which this country has ever possessed." In the events leading up to Curzon's famous note to France of 11 August 1923, the note which contended that the Ruhr occupation could not be justified under the Treaty of Versailles, D'Abernon played an important role both in London and in Berlin. In his Diary of an Ambassador, D'Abernon merely listed the notes between Curzon and France and added: "Throughout this controversy Lord D'Abernon had been consulted."

During his term as Ambassador in Berlin, D'Abernon's policy was identical with that of the Milner Group, except for the shading that he was more anti-Soviet and less anti-French and was more impetuous in his desire to tear up the Treaty of Versailles in favor of Germany. This last distinction rested on the fact that D'Abernon was ready to appease Germany regardless of whether it were democratic or not; indeed, he did not regard democracy as either necessary or good for Germany. The Milner Group, until 1929, was still in favor of a democratic Germany, because they realized better than D'Abernon the danger to civilization from an undemocratic Germany. It took the world depression and its resulting social unrest to bring the Milner Group around to the view which D'Abernon held as early as 1920, that appeasement to an undemocratic Germany could be used as a weapon against "social disorder."

Brigadier General J. H. Morgan, whom we have already quoted, makes perfectly clear that D'Abernon was one of the chief obstacles in the path of the Inter-allied Commission's efforts to force Germany to disarm. In 1920, when von Seeckt, Commander of the German Army, sought modifications of the disarmament rules which would have permitted large-scale evasion of their provisions, General Morgan found it impossible to get his dissenting reports accepted in London. He wrote in Assize of Arms: "At the eleventh hour I managed to get my reports on the implications of von Seeckt's plan brought to the direct notice of Mr. Lloyd George through the agency of my friend Philip Kerr who, after reading these reports, advised the Prime Minister to reject von Seeckt's proposals. Rejected they were at the Conference of Spa in July 1920, as we shall see, but von Seeckt refused to accept defeat and fell back on a second move." When, in 1921, General Morgan became "gravely disturbed" at the evasions of German disarmament, he wrote a memorandum on the subject. It was suppressed by Lord D'Abernon. Morgan added in his book: "I was not altogether surprised. Lord D'Abernon was the apostle of appeasement." In January 1923, this "apostle of appeasement" forced the British delegation on the Disarmament Commission to stop all inspection operations in Germany. They were never resumed, although the Commission remained in Germany for four more years, and the French could do nothing without the British members. (6) ''

-- The Anglo-American Establishment: From Rhodes to Cliveden, by Carroll Quigley

In the same review, she wrote approvingly of Oswald Mosley and British fascism. 'It is useless to deny that Fascism will have a hold in England,' she declared. 'Leaving aside the personality of Mosley -- there may be differences of opinion on that -- the fact remains that a vital nationalistic policy, put forward by a group of men determined on the idea of service, has never yet failed to stir a nation to action and to progress.' She repeated this chilling endorsement of fascism in the conclusion of the review:

Fascism in its national aspect can be sure of an ultimate success, but English Fascism must beware against inheriting an imperialist tradition, with all its evils and abuses. Mosley and his men may see before them a Greater Britain, but there are others equally sincere who see before them a Greater India. And the dynamic national consciousness of India will attain its ultimate victory just as surely and thoroughly as Italy has done, and Russia and Germany. English Fascism will only succeed in so far as it limits itself to the borders of Great Britain.

Freda spoke later of the 'fascist horror', but at this stage she appeared to acquiesce in the rise of fascist movements. It was an extraordinary and unsettling argument she advanced: for its endorsement of a militaristic style of nationalism; for its insistence that this did not bring a heightened risk of war; and for the supposition that British fascism could be decoupled from Empire to the extent of tolerating the national ambitions of the colonies. While fascism was not yet tainted by the visceral anti-semitism that produced the Holocaust, by the time Freda's book review was published some of her fellow members of the October Club had been involved in pitched battles with Mosleyites at Olympia and elsewhere. Fascism had been unmasked, and the brutality that underlay it was already apparent. Freda's comments emphasise that her burning political commitment was to Indian nationalism and that her broader political outlook at this time could best be described as confused. This was a short book review not a well-developed political treatise, but it suggests an alarmingly naive and uncritical approach to the rise of the most monstrous of twentieth-century totalitarianisms.

Her most pressing task, however, was preparing for the baby -- and doing so in a new home, in a foreign country, with no family beyond her husband at hand. She made two good German friends who helped in making baby clothes and gave sound advice. One of them, Nora Morrell, recommended a nursing home -- Hans Dahlem, a well-regarded Catholic institution with its own way of doing things. 'It was an extremely good nursing home,' Freda later recalled, 'but they had this theory that one shouldn't give too much anaesthetic to young mothers. But they didn't on the other hand teach one how to have painless childbirth and give one the sort of exercises which are regularly taught these days.' [29]

The baby was born on May 13th 1934: a boy, delivered after a fairly uneventful four hours in labour. 'He was a healthy child, weighed about eight pounds, and had the most astoundingly beautiful eyelashes and a little cap of dark hair and rosy cheeks.' Freda's mother came over to Berlin for the birth-the earliest photo of the baby is at three days old, in his grandmother's arms. Mother and baby came home nine days after the birth; his cradle was Indian, swathed in cotton and blue bows. This little boy was born in the German capital to an English mother, but he was from the moment of his birth Indian. That was reflected in his name, Ranga Trilochan Bedi. Trilochan was the name of Bedi's older brother. The name Ranga, his mother recalled, was after a liberal politician who had been the editor of an Indian daily paper rooted in moderate nationalism. When news of their engagement had become public the previous year, at a time when many Indian public figures were in London in the aftermath of the Round Table conferences, it had prompted discussion about inter-racial marriages among students:

At that time we were told by friends that Rangaswami Iyengar, who was the editor of the Hindu, Madras, had staunchly supported us and had said -- 'Why shouldn't our boys marry the best English girls, why must they always marry girls who are not in the university? I think they should get married. Why not!' And hearing of that, when we went up to London next time we called on him and thanked him and we became friends. [30]

Rangaswami Iyengar had died by the time the baby was born, and the naming of the child was in part 'because it was the name of this great statesman who had helped us so much.'

Ranga's birth merited mention in the Tribune, the more nationalist minded of Lahore's English language daily papers. Its anonymous correspondent in the German capital described the Bedis as 'two very conspicuous figures in the Indian community of Berlin', destined soon to make the journey to Lahore, and gave a flattering, almost swooning, pen portrait of the couple:

Mr Bedi is a strong, impressive personality of fine manly presence. His scholarly attainments are no mere abstractions, no mental achievements that go straight to sleep after their birth in the brain of an unoriginal mind. They are blooming realities of sterling worth that struggle again and again into fruitage in the microcosm of his mind under the percussion of the macrocosm around him. In addition to his manifold activities in the University and the seminaries attached to it, Mr Bedi is doing excellent constructive work in the Executive of the Indian Students' Association. Mrs Bedi has been very busy learning the Hindi language at the University since her arrival in Berlin. She reads Premchand's short stories fluently and corresponds in Hindi with her mother-in-law and sister-in-law in India. [31]

Mother and baby 'are progressing well', the letter added more prosaically. It was an embarrassingly verbose commendation of the Bedis, but clearly well informed.

Freda and Bedi lovingly assembled two baby books for their firstborn, replete with anecdotes, photographs and letters and telegrams of congratulation from India and England. More than eight decades later, Ranga Bedi has them still. Among the letters was one from Lucie Zimmern in Oxford, who had done so much to encourage the couple to have faith in their love. 'My dear children,' she wrote, 'How happy I am for you + how much we are looking forward to meeting this little baby who carries with him such a rich + extensive heirloom. May he witness a better use made by men of their minds + spirits + may you both be inspired to guide him.' The letter was signed 'grand maman', grandmother -- the Zimmerns took an almost proprietorial interest in the romance they had helped to nurture.

The Bedi family lived a quiet life in one of the more verdant Berlin suburbs. On their first wedding anniversary, they took the baby, then five-weeks old, on his first outing-to the zoo. Another outing, with Freda's mother and stepfather, was to Sanssouci, Frederick the Great's splendid summer palace at Potsdam just outside Berlin. It must have seemed at times that the wider political situation, and above all the racial and political intolerance of Hitler's administration and the free rein given to his supporters, was receding into the distance. But inevitably, the darkening clouds intruded into their lives.

President Hindenburg, the only real constraint on Hitler's assumption of absolute power, died on August 2nd 1934. The cabinet had decreed that on his death the office of president would be merged with that of chancellor, which was already held by Hitler. He was duly declared to be Germany's fuhrer. The Bedis had been contemplating heading to India that autumn, but Bedi had kept his options open by enrolling at the university for a further year. This additional step towards a Nazi dictatorship unsettled him:

I remember B.P.L. put down the paper and said: tomorrow we get on the train and go to Geneva, it's not safe any more. He was not taking part in any active politics but he was friendly with the Indian students of Berlin ... And he knew that Hitler's ways were such that he could swoop down on the Indian students-and precisely that did happen. He had a prophetic vision of it really.

So the next morning -- literally I was packing all day. You can imagine the state I was in -- packing and getting everything ready in one day, and B.P.L. going and getting the visa to Switzerland. But he put me on the train all right, and the next morning I was on the train and Nora on the platform to wave, say goodbye. [32]

In one of the baby books, there's a photograph taken on the station platform in Berlin. Freda and Ranga are in the carriage, just visible at the window, while Bedi is standing with Nora and some Indian friends, one of whom made the journey to Geneva with them. They had been forced to take refuge from fascism. It was not a happy way of saying goodbye to their first real home as a married couple and the city where their baby was born. But in Switzerland they were safe.

Through friends, the couple had the use of a flat in Geneva, which gave them some thinking time after the hurried departure from Germany.

After their hasty exit, they spent a few pleasant weeks staying in accommodations that had been arranged by their old Oxford professor, Alfred Zimmern [Professor Sir Alfred Eckhard Zimmern, whose name is associated with the founding of the League of Nations], who ran a school there. In October 1934, they finally made the decision to go to India and make it their permanent home. They sailed on the SS Conte Verde from northern Italy to Bombay, a journey of three weeks.

-- -- The Revolutionary Life of Freda Bedi, by Vicki Mackenzie

Bedi had to abandon plans for a doctorate, and leaving Berlin also meant forsaking his scholarship stipend. They had always intended to make their home in India and they decided to sail east as soon as they could. After just a few weeks in Geneva, the young family travelled to the port of Trieste and embarked on the SS Conte Verde. This sizeable ocean-going liner operated by the Lloyd Triestino line called at Bombay on its way to Shanghai, and had space for more than seven hundred passengers. Ranga was just four months of age and a little young for a tough two-week sea journey. 'The nightmare was to get milk for myself to drink, because I was feeding the baby. And I remember the millions of cockroaches that used to come out at night in the ship's kitchens-I used to go in and attempt to get milk.'

The photos they took on board showed Freda in a sari looking after Ranga, and there were some group photographs-it seems that two Chinese men who the Bedis knew from Oxford were also on board. 'On the ship my chief work was to prevent the discipline of [Ranga' s] little life, his regular sleep, from being disturbed by a stream of affectionate passengers who could not resist him-in particular by a charming party of Indian girl students returning from a tour of Europe, and some young nuns going East for the first time.' The voyage also offered an opportunity for Freda to reflect on and adjust to the country and the extended family which awaited her and to talk through hopes and anxieties with those sharing the journey and the experience of an inter-racial relationship:

On the boat there were three more international marriages-- an American woman with a Bengali husband and an eight-year old son; a German girl from Munich going out to join her doctor husband, 'I have left my little girl in Munich,' she said, 'with my mother. I could not bear to bring her out to strange and difficult new surroundings. I shall send for her when I have made a home.' I have often wondered since whether they met each other again. The third marriage was a young Berlin girl, a librarian, married to a Chinese and going to Shanghai. [33]

Freda's intellectual immersion in India, her commitment to the country's freedom movement and her adoption of the Indian style of dress helped to ease the shock of experiencing India -- 'so when I arrived in Bombay I felt, at least outwardly, at home. The port was just as I had imagined it, the jostling crowd of coolies and the faces of friends at the side of the ship. It was hot and sticky.'

On disembarking, the customs officials at Bombay had an unpleasant surprise in store. 'We had been listed as "politicals" because of our activities in London, mild though they were. And we were subjected to body searches ... and even Ranga's little napkin was taken off and searched because they thought I might be carrying messages in it.' [34] Her husband recalled that for seven hours, they searched the boxes of books they had brought, their personal possessions and the baby's nappies. 'Even in Hitlerite Germany,' he commented angrily, 'the search was never so thorough as here.' [35] One of the pre-occupations of the India Office was to prevent communist and militant nationalist publications from being smuggled into India and to disrupt links between leftists in India and allies abroad. To Freda, it must have seemed as if from the moment she set foot on Indian soil, she was viewed by the Raj as suspect. It must also have reaffirmed her identification with India and its politics, and her rejection of Empire and the indignities it imposed on those it ruled.
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