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Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria College, Wellington, N.Z. Vol. 10, No. 7. June 11, 1947


For three weeks in May the "N.Z. Listener" published the views of the intelligentsia of Wellington on a recent statement of J. B. Priestley to the effect that cultural democracy is undesirable and that censorship of culture is required, so that the cultural tastes of the masses can be directed along more intellectual lines. The opinions expressed in the "Listener" were characterised by the number of contributors who were unable to make up their minds. "Salient" now enters the field. To put it mildly, we don't agree.

The logical conclusion to Priestley's argument concerning cultural democracy is the establishment of an elite who will select the cultural fare of the mass of the people—a course which was followed assiduously by Herr Goebbels and his more shadowy prompters. Por despite that of repeated Nazi remark—"when I hear the word culture I cock my revolver"—we must realise, clearly and finally, that there was a Fascist culture. That features of this culture were anti-Semitism and the barbarous experimentation of the concentration-camps merely helps us to an explanation of the basis of culture.