Sat,-1 hope I shall not seem ungrateful
for Mr. Turnell's most appreciative, indeed generous review of Men and Tendencies if I reply to his acute and extremely intelligible criticisms.
I was not concerned m appraise the liter
ary achievement of the various men of letters concerned, beyond an occasional °biter dictum intended to show that I was not unaware of the artistic worth of men whose ideas cannot claim the same appreciation. Any such literary criticism would of course have required a far wider basis than the particular book or books chosen for criticism. I was concerned rather to discuss the religious and philosophic beliefs presented by the writers criticised, which are made sufficiently clear by the books discussed. Certainly I do not regard Galsworthy as a genius of the first rank. But a man whose Forsyte saga has depicted for all time the essence of the Victorian middle class and its succession into an alien epoch is surely entitled to be regarded as at least a secondary genius. In any case, I admit, I should on this point have deferred to the judgment of the large numbers who have found genius in Galsworthy.
Certainly Lawrence would have dete,sted Rosenberg and the Nazis. For as I pointed out in my essay on Energeticism he was an individualist, they are social energeticists. But this does not alter the fact that both Lawrence and the Nazis ascribe supreme value to life. the force of the blood, though for Lawrence it is the life urge of the individual, for the Nazis the communal life force of the race.
What I have desired to bring out is the far-reaching and in its manifestations extremely diversified revolt against reason in favour of irrational energy, however conceived and embodied. But this very revolt tends to inconsistency and instability in its exponents. It is therefore more than likely that Aldous Huxley has long since abandoned his Philosophy of Moods. But it remains a significant expression of antiintellectualism and as such worth—if not perhaps a monograph--at least the short essay I devoted to it, which moreover was originally written when " Do What You Will " was a new book.
It was certainly far from my intention
to dismiss as unimportant or to condemn Havelock Ellis's magnum opus on sexual pathology, which however of its nature dealt with bizarre and unpleasant sexual perversions, and this aspect of Ellis's work I am of course incompetent to discuss, and my object in referring to it was simply to point out to the general Catholic reader that sex was not the sole subject of Havelock Ellis's writing. On the other hand, frankly confess that " first and foremost" was a lapsus calami. I should have written " also an artist and a religious man." My only excuse is that my attention was fixed on the book with which I was dealing, in
which sex plays a very small part.
Temperamentally and as literary artists Lawrence and Galsworthy certainly have nothing in common. This however only renders more important philosophically the fact that in the last resort both ascribe the highest value to natural life as opposed to intellect or to transcendent spirit, though for the former that life is naked, for the latter clothed decorously in a romantic sentimentalism.
E. I. WATKIN.