Ezra Pound Letter Sent to The Editor of The London Criterion 1934

Ezra Pound Letter Sent to The Editor of The London Criterion 1934

The body of this ms. was written and left my hands in February 1933.  40 publishers have refused it.  No typescript of mine has been read by so many people or brought me a more interesting correspondence.  It is here printed verbatim, unaltered.  I had not seen the ms. from the time it left Rapallo till it returned here with the galley proof.  It is printed as record of what I saw in February 1933.  The September preface (1933) indicated a flutter of hope, that has grown steadily more fluttery and less hopeful.

ONE element of the Duce’s gamut is the continual gentle diatribe against all that is “anti-storico,” all that is against historic process.

Obviously a parliamentary system which is in Italy an exotic. a XIXth century fad, imported ad hoc, for temporal reason, a doctrinaires’ game in North Italy, a diplomatic accident in the South, is not in the blood and bone of Italians.

Vittorio Emanuele had reasons, and even necessities of state pushing him to it, at least as top dressing.

What it signified de facto in Turin, is best exemplified by the specific occasion on which a Peidmontese parliament refused to sign on the dotted line of a treaty.  Victor told the people to elect another that would.

The system went into effect in Naples to avoid technical terms in a treaty with Austria.

Given a little time and leisure (XII years) Mussolini emerges with a scheme for ascertaining the will of the people that will be at least in intention more efficient than elected politicians, divided by geographical districts.  He wants a council where every kind of man will be represented by some bloke of his own profession, by some deputy who has identical interests and a direct knowledge of the needs and temptations of a given profession.