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akiyoshi miyake <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Ezra Pound discussion list of the University of Maine <[log in to unmask]>
Thu, 29 Jan 1998 10:36:21 +0900
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To Dan Pearlman and Jeff
Thank you for your response.
dpearl>I don't understand why Ms. Miyake....
As Tim Redman correctly points out(Thanks, Tim), I am not the author of
_Ezra Pound and the Mysteries of Love_, which was written by Akiko Miyake.
We are both Japanese, and our names happen to be similar, but Akiko is a
female famous senior scholar, while I am a not-so-young kindergarten boy.
dpearl>I don't understand why Ms. Miyake assumes that
dpearl>Pound would have had to read a particular book,
dpearl>by Webster or anyone, in 1940 to have formed
dpearl>antisemitic opinions
I am afraid I couldn't have myself understood. let me try again.
"In 1940" is Surette's conjecture, not mine,(though I do not know how
important he thinks the book is to Pound). I suspect Pound read the book
earlier, say, early in 1930s, not in 1940 or later.
Here are factual data from _Ezra Pound and Italian Fascism_ by Tim Redman
and _The Birth of Modernism_ by Leon Surette:
1)Pound read the _Protocols_ in 1940. His copy is unmarked, but he
mentioned it in his several letters at that time(Redman 202).
2)Pound did read the Webster's book. The copy in his library is "heavily
marked in Pound's hand"(Surette 47).
3)As far as I know, no one, including Redman and Surette, reports that
Pound mentioned the book by Webster in any of his letters. It seems that
he did not mention it.
4)Surette conjectures that Pound read Webster's book around 1940. His
dating is founded on the fact 1)( see Surette 23).
5) The Protocols was a famous forgery, while Webster's book pretended to
be scholarly and critical, though it is now a well-known "Jew conspiracy" fantasy.
It is strange to me that Pound read the two book in the same year and
only mentioned the one, which is unmarked, and not the other, which is
heavily marked. So, I suspect he read the latter earlier, late in 1920s
or early in 1930s, when it seems to have interested the poet (it is
heavily marked) more than in 1940. But I have no evidence. So, I asked
the question in my last letter.
WEISERLE> i've always just figured that the anti-semitism
WEISERLE>came from his cultural heritage, was strengthened by his growing
WEISERLE> interest in money, and -then- influenced by books or what not.
I agree with Jeff above if the items are enumerated in temporal order,
but not always if in atemporal absolute one. It is most unlikely that
young boys be influenced by parents or by local intellectual environment
less than by books, while it is as much unlikely that a person of 45 or
55 years old remains to be influenced only by the ambience during his/her
childhood, and not by books. In the case of Pound, his anti-semitism
became more and more vehement after around 1930. Interest in money is
clearly one of the driving forces. But I guess he was probably influenced
by some "Jew conspiracy" book also. And I believe that if the poet read
the book by Webster when he was on an early stage of his anti-semitism,it
would have exerted an influence on him. May be it drove him up to the
next stage, or it confirmed his hitherto wobbly belief in conspiracy
theory.But I have no evidence on the dating, so, i asked the question.
Now, let me ask the same question in different manners:
1)When did Pound and John Drummond become close friends, so close that
Drummond gave his copy of Webster's book to Pound, who marked the book
2)Did not Pound write to Drummond in which he thanked him for the book?
I ask these questions because it is Drummond's copy that stands heavily
marked in Pound's hand on the shelf of the poet's library(Surette 47).
3)When was the fouth edition of the book published? The marked copy is a
fouth edition(Surette 47).
I will be grateful if someone answer any of the questions.
akiyoshi miyake
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