Tim Romano is probably right to claim that "A careful reading [of Lewis's
books] will reveal nothing that demonstrates a 'full commitment' to
fascism." But _The Hitler Cult_ (1939) (as well as _The Jews, Are They
Human?_) does mark a partial repudiation of the views expressed in the
earlier _Hitler_ (1931). By the end of the 1930s, Lewis (unlike Pound)
could write that "I was badly taken in, in 1930." He also felt guilty
about leaving Britain for Canada with the outbreak of war: he saw himself
as British, not North American.
And, yes, "He was one of the greatest prose writers of the 20th century, a
brilliant satirist, and among painters, one of the greatest portraitists."
I'll second that.
>P.S. Here are the chapter titles from THE HITLER CULT. You may be interested
>in Part 2, X. 'Last of all, there is Hitler the Mystic; he has to be
>carefully considered. The 'German Joan of Arc,' as he has been called, who
>'hears voices' and receives supernatural guidance; this 'sleep-walker' who
>arrives at his decisions intuitively; all that side of the picture has to be
>looked into rather carefully. For it is what lifts him above the average
>politico--suggesting a status superior to Pilsduski, Metaxas, Kemal, or
>Mussolini. It is his capital asset.'
> I. First Sight of the Nazis
> II. 'No Jew--No Hitler!' [notice the quotation marks]
>III. Berlin, 1930 -- 'Nur Legal!'
>IV. The Proper Approach To National Socialism
> I. Herr Hitler's Personal Appearance
> II. Hitler as a Fairy-Tale
> V. Hitler a 'Solitary' (Comparison with Rousseau)
>VI. The Sleep-Walker
>VII. Hitler 1933-1939
>VIII. A Politicians' Hero
>IX. Herr Hitler and 'Pig-Headed Intellectuals'
> X. Hitler 'The Mystic'
> I. Manchukuo, Abyssinia, Austria, Czechoslovakia, and Spain
> II. Is England in a spot?
>III. The Dangers of a 'Grey War'
>IV. The Promised Land of Tom, Dick, and Harry
> I. Trade Follows the Flag
>II. Proper Action off the Coast of Spain
>III. Empire-Building in 1939
>IV. Empire: or the Problem of the Giant State
>V. The 'Haves' and 'Have-Nots'
>VI. Grossdeutschland is so 'Gross'
>VII. The Empire-Builder Repudiates Hitler's Alibi
>> Dear Tim Romano,
>> I have no difficulty in retracting my statement about Lewis. I did say
>> no other American besides Pound demonstrated such strong support,
>> to a full commitment to fascism. Another one, I said, was PERHAPS Lewis,
>> and I made that assessment based on the letters which Pound and Lewis
>> exchanged over the issue of fascism. But I have no real stake in the
>> argument. It seems to me that the issue of Lewis' interest in fascism is
>> subject to debate. But if you wish, I will retract the statement. I will
>> also apologize for speaking about Lewis with scant knowledge of the man,
>> other than what I have gathered from his relationship with Pound.