Journalism and Prophecy, 1893-1946: An Anthology

H. G. Wells

Compiled & edited by W. Warren Wagar


Contents

Preface vii

Introduction xv

PART I: FORECASTS AND IMPRESSIONS

A. The Years before the Storm, 1893-1914

1. The Man of the Year Million 3
2. Anticipations: The Triumph of Suburbia 10
3. The Future in America 26
4. Anticipations: War in the Twentieth Century 41
5. The Land Ironclads 50
6. Atomic Bombs 54
7. The War in the Air 57
8. War and Discipline 61
9. The Coming of Bleriot 64
10. The Labor Unrest 68
11. The Possible Collapse of Civilization 71

B. The Great War and the League, 1914-1919

1. The War That Will End War 77
2. Boon 85
3. The Quick Way to Essen 91
4. The End of the War 95
5. The End of the Hohenzollerns 100
6. War and the Status of Women 103
7. Ruins 110
8. Tanks 116 
9. The Plain Necessity for a League 119
10. A Letter to Wilson 128

C. The Age of the Dictators, 1920-1939

1. Homunculus in a Bottle 137
2. The Trail of Versailles 142
3. Russia in the Shadows 149
4. Three Crises 168
5. The General Strike 179
6. Fascism 194
7. Sacco and Vanzetti 204
8. The Depression and the Future of Civilization 211
9. The New Deal: Critics and Brain Trusters 215
10. The Munich Crisis and the Nazi Religion 225
11. Decadent World 234
12. The Honor and Dignity of the Free Mind 239

D. World War II, 1939-1946

1. The Nazi War Machine: Bluff and Folly 253
2. Why Generals Deteriorate 259
3. The Third Term 264
4. A Republican’s Faith 269

PART II: PORTRAITS

1. Joseph Conrad and Ford Madox Hueffer 277
2. Henry James and Bernard Shaw 281
3. Ivan Pavlov and Bernard Shaw 287
4. Maxim Gorky 295
5. Booker T. Washington 302
6. Theodore Roosevelt 306
7. Joseph Joffre 311
8. David Lubin 315
9. David Lloyd George 321
10. Lords Grey and Curzon 325
11. V. I. Lenin 329 [see also editor’s prefatory note]
12. J. V. Stalin 337
13. Franklin Delano Roosevelt 345
14. Winston Churchill 353
15. Sir Oswald Mosley 368
16. Adolf Hitler 370
17. Charles de Gaulle 373
18. Beatrice Webb 381

PART III: VISIONS

1. The World Organism 387
2. Socialism and the New World Order 392
3. The Federation of Man 398
4. The Open Conspiracy 404
5. The Idea of a World Encyclopedia 419
6. The Rights of Man 428
7. Mind at the End of Its Tether 435

Sources 443



Preface

This is not a scholarly pickle jar of meticulously footnoted complete texts, but a book to read for pleasure and instruction. I have made judicious cuts in a good many of the articles and chapters selected, partly to avoid needless repetition, partly to save space, and partly to omit material of no great contemporary interest. The reader may discover for himself just what surgery, if any, was performed by consulting the list of sources on pages 443-47.

He is also most cordially invited to take the next obvious step and embark on a program of reading Wells in the original. No writer of his generation has been more unjustly neglected than Wells. I hope this anthology, which contains less than two percent of his incredibly vast and varied work, will assist in hurrying along the inevitable revival. Most of the titles excerpted here can no longer be bought new, but almost any good library will be able to put a generous supply at the reader’s disposal. Ardent Wellsians will also want to join the recently founded H. G. Wells Society; all inquiries should be addressed to the Secretary, Mr. J. H. Ovenden, 95 Highbury Hill, London, N.5, England.

I acquired many debts in making this anthology. Several publishers gave me permission to use excerpts from their books, and their names may be found on the copyright page. The tracing of rights was done with awesome efficiency by Miss Patricia Butler of A. P. Watt & Son, literary agents for the Executors of H. G. Wells. For all her prompt, friendly, and accurate help, I am very grateful indeed. Dr. Gordon N. Ray granted me permission to use an unpublished extract from the typescript of Mind at the End of Its Tether, now in the H. G. Wells Archive of the University of Illinois Library. I am also in the debt of Dr. Ray and of Professor Harris Wilson for giving me the freedom of the Wells Archive this past summer. Very special thanks are due to the Executors, Professor G. P. Wells and Mr. Frank Wells, who read the manuscript through and made its publication possible. Their cooperation and sympathetic interest are warmly appreciated.

Mr. Craig Wylie, Managing Editor of Houghton Mifflin Co., deserves my most profound gratitude for his kind encouragement and editorial assistance; and I should also like to thank Mr. David Harris of Houghton Mifflin Co. for his help in preparing the manuscript for the printers. Finally, I must thank my wife Dorothy, who did nothing at all—except to take the best possible care of her fortunate husband and our three small male perpetual motion machines, which was, believe me, enough.

W. Warren Wagar

London
November, 1963


Editor’s Note

Throughout this anthology no attempt has been made to standardize spelling or punctuation. Passages are reprinted exactly as first published, except for the correction of a few obvious typographical slips. Omissions are indicated by asterisks or, where the text jumps to a new chapter, article, or book, by a few blank lines, and for the sake of greater clarity in several instances by extra space and a printer’s ornament. The four dots (....) often found at the end of sentences or paragraphs are Wells’s own; this was a favorite device of his to suggest a trailing-away of thought, and does not indicate the deletion of words from his text.


Sources

The customary procedure has been to use the first American edition of a book, whenever one exists, otherwise the first British edition. Information about the transatlantic counterpart, if any, of each edition used is supplied in brackets. The titles chosen for the selections in Parts I and III are usually Wells’s own.

PART I: FORECASTS AND IMPRESSIONS

Section A: The Years before the Storm, 1893-1914

1. The Man of the Year Million. Certain Personal Matters (London: Lawrence and Bullen, 1897) , pp. 161-71.

2. Anticipations: The Triumph of Suburbia. Anticipations of the Reaction of Mechanical and Scientific Progress upon Human Life and Thought (New York: Harper, 1902), pp. 14-21, 39-40, 41-44, 45-46, 51-53, 63-65, 91-97, 115-16, 117-22, 123. [London: Chapman and Hall, 1902.]

3. The Future in America. The Future in America (New York: Harper, 1906), pp. 17-19, 21, 30, 35-39, 128-32, 223-28, 230-35. [London: Chapman and Hall, 1906.]

4. Anticipations: War in the Twentieth Century. Anticipations, pp. 194-96, 198-204, 205-10, 229-30.

5. The Land Ironclads. The Short Stories of H. G. Wells (Garden City, N. Y.: Doubleday, Doran, 1929), pp. 127-30. [London: Benn, 1927.]

6. Atomic Bombs. The World Set Free (New York: Dutton, 1914), pp. 114-17. [London: Macmillan, 1914.]

7. The War in the Air. The War in the Air (New York: Macmillan, 1908), pp. 351-55. [London: Bell, 1908.]

8. War and Discipline. First and Last Things (New York: Putnam, 1908), pp. 223-27. [London: Constable, 1908.]

9. The Coming of Bleriot. Social Forces in England and America (New York: Harper, 1914), pp. 1-5. [British title, An Englishman Looks at the World (London: Cassell, 1914).]

10. The Labor Unrest. Social Forces in England and America, pp. 50, 69-71.

11. The Possible Collapse of Civilization. Social Forces in England and America, pp. 383-89.

Section B: The Great War and the League, 1914-1919

1. The War That Will End War. The War That Will End War (New York: Dnffield, 1914), pp. 9-12, 17-22, 65-68. [London: Palmer, 1914.]

2. Boon. Boon, The Mind of the Race, The Wild Asses of the Devil, and The Last Trump (New York: Doran, 1915), pp. 265-76. [London: Unwin, 1915.]

3. The Quick Way to Essen. “The Quick Way to Essen,” (London) Daily Express, June 23, 1915.

4. The End of the War. What Is Coming? (New York: Macmillan, 1916), pp. 29-30, 34-36, 40-41,43-45. [London: Cassell, 1916.]

5. The End of the Hohenzollerns. What Is Coming?, pp. 273-75, 287-90.

6. War and the Status of Women. What Is Coming?, pp. 161-66, 172-76, 178, 182, 183-84, 188.

7. Ruins. Italy, France and Britain at War (New York: Macmillan, 1917), pp. 75-84. [British title, War and the Future (London: Cassell, 1917).]

8. Tanks. Italy, France and Britain at War, pp. 153-56.

9. The Plain Necessity for a League. In the Fourth Year: Anticipations of a World Peace (New York: Macmillan, 1918), pp. 97-111. [London: Chatto and Windus, 1918.]

10. A Letter to Wilson. Experiment in Autobiography (New York: Macmillan, 1934), pp. 605-11. [London: Gollancz, 1934.]

Section C: The Age of the Dictators, 1920-1939

1. Homunculus in a Bottle. The Salvaging of Civilization (New York: Macmillan, 1921), pp. 1-4, 13-15, 41-43. [London: Cassell, 1921.]

2. The Trail of Versailles. Washington and the Riddle of Peace (New York: Macmillan, 1922), pp. 34-37, 39-44, 47-50. [British title, Washington and the Hope of Peace (London: Collins, 1922).]

3. Russia in the Shadows. Russia in the Shadows (New York: Doran, 1921), pp. 15-37, 81-85, 86-97, 135-42. [London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1920.]

4. Three Crises. A Year of Prophesying (New York: Macmillan, 1925), pp. 15-20, 206-9, 214-19. [London, Unwin, 1924.]

5. The General Strike. Meanwhile (New York: Doran, 1927), pp. 197-216, 219-20. [London: Benn, 1927.]

6. Fascism. The Way the World Is Going (Garden City, N. Y.: Doubleday, Doran, 1929), pp. 25-36. [London: Benn, 1928.] The Fate of Man (New York: Alliance, 1939), pp. 153-54. [British title, The Fate of Homo sapiens (London: Seeker and Warburg, 1939).]

7. Sacco and Vanzetti. The Way the World Is Going, pp. 270-77, 280-81.

8. The Depression and the Future of Civilization. After Democracy (London: Watts, 1932), pp. 217-21.

9. The New Deal: Critics and Brain Trusters. The New America, The New World (New York: Macmillan, 1935), pp. 23-38, 42-43. [London: Cresset, 1935.]

10. The Munich Crisis and the Nazi Religion. Travels of a Republican Radical in Search of Hot Water (Harmondsworth, Middlesex: Penguin Books, 1939), pp. 18-24. The Fate of Man, pp. 142-47.

11. Decadent World. The Fate of Man, pp. 62-63, 237, 238, 240-42, 246-48.

12. The Honor and Dignity of the Free Mind. Travels of a Republican Radical, pp. 122-24, 132-50.

Section D: World War II, 1939-1946

1. The Nazi War Machine: Bluff and Folly. Guide to the New World (London: Gollancz, 1941), pp. 31-32, 21-22, 101. "Russia and the Future/' (London) Sunday Dispatch, June 29, 1941.

2. Why Generals Deteriorate. Phoenix: A Summary of the Inescapable Conditions of World Reorganisation (London: Seeker and Warburg, 1942), pp. 28-30, 32-33. [Girard, Kansas: Haldeman-Julius, 1942.]

3. The Third Term. Guide to the New World, pp. 79-82.

4. A Republican’s Faith. “A Republican’s Faith,” New Statesman and Nation, 28 (December 23, 1944), p. 421. “That Mosley Money!” (London) New Leader, July 6, 1946.

PART II: PORTRAITS

1. Joseph Conrad and Ford Madox Hueffer. Experiment in Autobiography, pp. 525-28. 

2. Henry James and Bernard Shaw. Experiment in Autobiography, pp. 451-56.

3. Ivan Pavlov and Bernard Shaw. The Way the World Is Going, pp. 291-302.

4. Maxim Gorky. The Future in America, pp. 178-81, 183-84. Experiment in Autobiography, pp. 692-94.

5. Booker T. Washington. The Future in America, pp. 196-201.

6. Theodore Roosevelt. The Future in America, pp. 245-48, 251-53.

7. Joseph Joffre. Italy, France and Britain at War, pp. 13-15, 18-21.

8. David Lubin. The World of William Clissold (New York: Doran, 1926), II: 582-88. [London: Benn, 1926.]

9. David Lloyd George. A Year of Prophesying, pp. 88-92.

10. Lords Grey and Curzon. Experiment in Autobiography, pp. 657-60.

11. V. I. Lenin. Russia in the Shadows, pp. 145-50, 152-67.

12. J. V. Stalin. Experiment in Autobiography, pp. 684-86, 687-91.

13. Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Experiment in Autobiography, pp. 679-83. World Brain (Garden City, N. Y.: Doubleday, Doran, 1938), pp. 158-61. [London: Methuen, 1938.]

14. Winston Churchill. A Year of Prophesying, pp. 63-68. “Churchill, Man of Destiny,” Colliers, November 2, 1940, pp. 17 ff. [London: Sunday Graphic, December 8, 1940.] “Churchill Must Go,” The Tribune (London), December 15, 1944. [Excerpts in Time, December 25, 1944, p. 30.]

15. Sir Oswald Mosley. Experiment in Autobiography, pp. 669-70.

16. Adolf Hitler. ’42 to '44: A Contemporary Memoir upon Human Behaviour during the Crisis of the World Revolution (London: Seeker and Warburg, 1944), pp. 129-31.

17. Charles de Gaulle. ’42 to ’44, pp. 149-54, 157-58.

18. Beatrice Webb. ’42 to ’44, pp. 124-27.

PART III: VISIONS

1. The World Organism. Anticipations, pp. 267-70. Social Forces in England and America, pp. 414-15.

2. Socialism and the New World Order. New Worlds for Old (New York: Macmillan, 1908), pp. 21-26. [London: Constable, 1908.] First and Last Things, pp. 130-32.

3. The Federation of Man. The Outline of History (New York: Macmillan, 1920), II: 586-88, 589-90, 593-95. [London: Newnes, 1920.]

4. The Open Conspiracy. The Open Conspiracy: Blue Prints for a World Revolution (Garden City, N. Y.: Doubleday, Doran, 1928), pp. 27-31, 57-58, 59-63, 65-67, 131-37, 142-43, 151-54, 163, 185-90. [London: Gollancz, 1928.]

5. The Idea of a World Encyclopedia. The Work, Wealth and Happiness of Mankind (Garden City, N. Y.: Doubleday, Doran, 1931), II: 844-48, 851-54. [London: Heinemann, 1932.]

6. The Rights of Man. Phoenix, pp. 186-92.

7. Mind at the End of Its Tether. Mind at the End of Its Tether (New York: Didier, 1946), pp. 1, 3, 4-6, 12-13, 17-18. [London: Heinemann, 1945.] “Appendix: Aesop’s Quinine for Delphi,” typescript attached to the author’s Ms. of Mind at the End of Its Tether, Wells Archive, University of Illinois, pp. 1-3, 7-12.


SOURCE: Wells, H. G. Journalism and Prophecy, 1893-1946: An Anthology, compiled and edited by W. Warren Wagar. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1964. xxvi, 447 pp. Contents (ix-xii), Preface (vii-viii), Editor’s Note (xiii), Sources (443-447).

Note: Electronic copy can be borrowed from archive.org:.


Chapter VII: The Conflict of Languages
from Anticipations by H. G. Wells

The Definitive Time Machine: A Critical Edition of H.G. Wells’s Scientific Romance

Midwifing the “World Brain”:
SIG/AH & SIG/BSS Program, 50th ASIS Annual Meeting, Boston, 1987

[Paradoxes of Time Travel] From “Without Prejudice”
by Israel Zangwill

Lenin, H. G. Wells, & Science Fiction

Leon Trotsky on H. G. Wells as Philistine

Red Stars: Political Aspects of Soviet Science Fiction by Patrick McGuire

Dystopia west, dystopia east: the vanishing of speculative fiction under Stalinism
by Erika Gottlieb

The Life and Thought of H.G. Wells by Julius Kagarlitski

Chapter 2 [On The Time Machine]

Chapter 4: Facing the Changes: 2: Religion instead of Revolution

Mankind and the Year 2000 by V. Kosolapov:
Chapter 5, Labour Process in the Future (excerpts)

Universal Language in Soviet Science Fiction by Patrick McGuire

Yevgeny Zamyatin on Revolution, Entropy, Dogma and Heresy

Stanislaw Lem on Alien Invasions

The Cyclical Night: Borges—Introductory by L. A. Murrilo

H. G. Wells’ The Time Machine: Selected Bibliography

Science Fiction & Utopia Research Resources:
A Selective Work in Progress

Futurology, Science Fiction, Utopia, and Alienation
in the Work of Imre Madách, György Lukács, and Other Hungarian Writers:
Select Bibliography

Frigyes & Ferenc Karinthy in English

Salvaging Soviet Philosophy (1)

Marx and Marxism Web Guide

H. G. Wells Revisited (1) [temporarily inactive]

H. G. Wells Revisited (2): Wells & Borges [temporarily inactive]

Esperanto Literature: Notes and Impressions (1930) by K. R. C. Sturmer

Letero al H. G. Wells (julio 1925) de Frigyes Karinthy

Vizito al Julio Baghy de K. R. C. Sturmer

Sándor Szathmári (1897–1974): Bibliografio & Retgvidilo / Bibliography & Web Guide

Sciencfikcio & Utopia Literaturo en Esperanto /
Science Fiction & Utopian Literature in Esperanto: Gvidilo / A Guide

Offsite:

Letero al H. G. Wells” de Frigyes Karinthy, julio 1925
(Antaŭparolo al Kapilario, tradukis Andreo Szabó)

Wells and Borges and the Labyrinths of Time” by Robert M. Philmus
(Science-Fiction Studies 10.4, 1974)
PDF @ Borges Center


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