The study and appreciation of the life, works and times of Arnold Bennett

Winter 2015 2016 Newsletter

Winter Newsletter 2015 – 2016

Article Published:

Early in his travelling career (October 1897) Bennett was a tourist in Paris, and wrote in his Journal on the 25 of that month:

The traveller, however virginal and enthusiastic, does not enjoy an unbroken ecstasy. He has periods of gloom, periods when he asks himself the object of all these exertions, and puts the question whether or not he is really experiencing pleasure. At such times he suspects that he is not seeing the right things, that the characteristic, the right aspects of these strange scenes are escaping him. He looks forward dully to the days of his holiday yet to pass, and wonders how he will dispose of them. He is disgusted because his money is not more, his command of the language so slight, and his capacity for enjoyment so limited.

The humility of this confession will surely strike many a chord.  Thirty years on AB was once again, unsurprisingly, on holiday, in Italy.  Nicholas Redman, in one of two articles in this Winter issue focusing on AB the traveller, graphically chronicles our author’s winter holiday at Cortina d’Ampezzo in 1927.  One big difference of course, comparing 1927 with 1897, is that AB is no longer ‘disgusted because his money is not more’.  In a second travelogue piece, Nicholas recounts one of AB’s earlier jaunts, this time to Scotland in 1916.  And as a pendant to this excursion to the North, Elaine Sutton reminds us of another Bennett link with Scotland which she discovered during a recent visit to Sutherland.

 

Alan Pedley – Editor

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