Other formats

    TEI XML file   ePub eBook file  


    mail icontwitter iconBlogspot iconrss icon

The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 10, Issue 5 (August 1, 1935)

In the Glass Case

In the Glass Case.

The late Mr. Justice Alpers, in his book “Cheerful Yesterdays,” told a story that indicated the disapproval with which “The Way of All Flesh” was regarded in some quarters, even in New Zealand, when it first appeared, in 1903. Alpers, being a great admirer of Butler's writings, sent a copy of “The Way of All Flesh,” with other books, to the Christchurch Public Library. It was kept under a glass, in a locked case, where the public could not get it. It is hard to understand at this time of day exactly why it should have shocked the civic censors. Literature has whizzed far past that stage; Butler's most satirical pages would not give even Church people a shock to-day.

“The Way of All Flesh” is delightful to read for its structure and expression and its inimitable description of the English life of nearly a century ago that he found so stifling.

“Erewhon,” “Alps and Sanctuaries,” “Erewhon Revisited,” and Samuel Butler's other works form a library of vast refreshment, stimulating to thought; books of wisdom and truth, with a delicious impish humour that will manifest itself in spite of all Butler's effort to be serious. The truth would always out; and the greatest truths are often expressed in a whimsical wit.