Friday, 14 March 2014

Magic White and Black

Non-fiction ~ opinion piece¹
Published in The Spectator, 20th April 1934²
945 words
(First read 14/03/2014)

Or: Reading between the Lines, Lesson 93b.  Benson appears to argue that superstition  leads to religion which leads to Religion and that belief in magic white and black is ... erm ... a natural corollary of all three and that ... erm ... it's only natural that in this day and age that belief should persist among some people.  At least, I think that's what he's saying: it's all rather vague.  And as for his own beliefs, well, let's just say that he somehow manages to produce an opinion piece which contains no discernible opinion.  It's clever stuff, in a way, but at the same time annoying and frustrating.
You can read it online here.

P.S. A bit of imagery Benson uses will put spook story fans in mind of his short story Atmospherics (1928).

¹ This will have to do: it lacks the length, breadth and depth of an essay; isn't about anything enough to be an article; and is far too po-faced to be considered a sketch. 
² The article was collected in Sea Mist: Collected Spook Stories Volume 5 (2005).

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