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The Long White Cloud

Reeves and the Fabians

page 13

Reeves and the Fabians

In October 1947, Mr. C. E. Carrington asked Mr. George Bernard Shaw, as a pioneer Fabian, for some information about the influence of Reeves in the movement. In his reply Mr. Shaw wrote: “The Fabian policy was well established before Reeves came to London. How far he had adopted it, and how far originated it in New Zealand I do not know. New Zealand was colonized, not like Australia by transported convicts, but by cultivated middle class British immigrants who, having no spare money, could provide public services only through Government, and were consequently forced into Fabian Socialism without dreaming of Socialism as such. New Zealand was therefore first in the experimental field and Reeves quite as able as the Fabian founders. That is all that can be said.”

(When asked for permission to print this note, Mr. Shaw kindly wrote: “Quotation of this is well within your statutory privilege, to which, as far as I am personally concerned you are most welcome.”)