Lot

1397

SHAW GEORGE BERNARD: (1856-1950)

In AUTOGRAPH LETTERS, MANUSCRIPTS & HISTORICAL DO...

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Estepona, Malaga
SHAW GEORGE BERNARD: (1856-1950) Irish playwright, Nobel Prize winner for Literature, 1925. An interesting Typewritten Manuscript Signed (twice, 'By Bernard Shaw' beneath the title, and again with his initials G.B.S. at the conclusion), nine pages (typed to the rectos only), 4to, n.p., 27th January 1923. The manuscript, with extensive revisions and corrections in Shaw's hand (indicated in bold text below) is entitled The Unprotected Child and The Law, and states, in part, 'It is a curious feature of British civilization that our police arrangements, though they enable the adult male citizen to go about unarmed and the adult female to walk abroad unescorted, fail to protect children from the most detestable forms of molestation. The woman who goes shopping with a sense of complete security, and never has a moment's anxiety as to the return of her husband from his work unrobbed and unbruised, cannot feel that her children, even at the smallest age compatible with independent locomotion, are safe in broad daylight in a London park, much less in the camera obscura of the picture theatre......When she realizes too late that the law, professing to deter the criminal, is really calculated to deter the prosecutor, she is sometimes moved to suspect that this effect is not wholly unintended. There is something more than motherly indignation to support that suspicion. The few publicly articulate people who concern themselves about the matter, and who form the so-called public opinion that finds expression on the bench, seem to fall into two extremes with no middle. Either they are psychopathically excited by psychopathic outrages and frantically demand that the offenders be flogged or emasculated, or they regard the offence as an amiable weakness, and the notion that its consequences to the victim are necessarily serious as sentimental nonsense. They shew their reluctance to punish it by very light sentences, and by a resolute opposition to the raising of the age at which the consent (and by inference the enjoyment) of the child can be placed in defence. Thus between the flagellomaniacs who are making the offender's vice an excuse for gratifying their own peculiar form of it on the one hand, and the sympathetic amorists on the other, the children have to thank their luck rather than the law when they escape molestation. The matter is further complicated by men's dread of false charges, blackmail, and conspiracies between mother and child to 'put away' an inconvenient father.......Sir Basil Thompson......humorously suggests that all girls should be locked up until they are eighteen to save the police the trouble of investigating the stories they invent.....In fact the younger the child the more unrestrained the imaginative liar. Further differences between child and child in precocity are so inclaculable that we have Oscar Wilde giving sixteen as the age at which conscience of sex begins, and Rousseau, in his autobiography, giving the date in his own case at his birth: the net conclusion being that in the case of any individual child it is impossible either to accept any story on the ground that the teller is too young to have invented it, or to reject it as too grotesque to be credible......In view of these facts, it is impossible to exempt a child from the most searching cross examination when criminal proceedings are taken; yet from every point of view other than that of establishing or refuting a charge, cross examination is as undesirable as its necessarily bad effect on the child can make it. In short, the remedy offered by the criminal law may easily be worse than no remedy at all. It rubs violently into the child's mind an impression that had much better be obliterated, or, as that is hardly possible, minimized.......The danger to children is at its gravest when popular ignorance and superstition on matters of sex are left undispelled because of the taboo which forbids their being mentioned. Take for example the case of venereal disease. Few people realize that children are in special danger of being infected by it: they regard them as specially exempt from it because of their innocence. They do not know that there is a belief, widespread in our most ignorant classes, that a man suffering from such a disease can be cured by intercourse with a virgin; and that consequently, as childhood is the surest guarantee of virginity. childern are violated as a therapeutical measure, the only result. of course, being that the child is infected too......As far as I know, there is only one attempt being made to provide, by private subscription, a hospital for innocently infected children to which any sane mother would consent to send her child. That staggering fact illustrates the sort of consideration children get from our public authorities and the public conscience behind them......When we come to the remedies, we are forced to admit that what cannot be prevented cannot be remedied. Some of the preventive remedies are obvious enough. Wherever you have overcrowding and overwork both of children and adults, you get a high rate of incest with children as certainly as a high rate of zymotic disease. People who have bedrooms all to themselves as a matter of course, and who have plenty of sport and music and reading and pictures to divert them, cannot conceive a life in which young girls boast of being the mothers of their fathers' children; but this is an established modern industrial phenomenon; and the comfortable people may as well know that it exists and is part of the price of their comfort......If the question of how much population the country can bear is ever faced as it should be, the first point to be settled will be not one of heads per acre divided into wheat per acre, but of space available for separate bedrooms (not to say bathrooms) per head. When incest and promiscuity have been cut off at their source in poverty and drudgery, there will still be an irreducible minimum of criminal assault for which society at large is not responsible. For the decent and as far as possible harmless investigation of such cases we need special courts, women police, women jurors, judges, magistrates, advocates and doctors alongside the male ones, with none of them in any uniform recognizable by a child as a police uniform.....The publication of the child's name, or of portraits of it, should be made a serious offence; and the publication of the name of the accused person unless and until convicted should also be prohibited. There are many things shamelessly featured in our newspapers which are forbidden by French law and should be forbidden in every decent country. I must add that the advocates of complete license for the press have one argument which cannot be ignored.......As to punishments, when they are simply vindictive they are also simply wicked; and their effect on the imagination increases crime......´OWING TO LIMITATIONS IMPOSED BY THE SALEROOM, THE COMPLETE DESCRIPTION FOR THIS LOT CAN NOT DE DISPLAYED. PLEASE REFER TO IAA EUROPE DIRECTLY FOR FURTHER INFORMATION.
SHAW GEORGE BERNARD: (1856-1950) Irish playwright, Nobel Prize winner for Literature, 1925. An interesting Typewritten Manuscript Signed (twice, 'By Bernard Shaw' beneath the title, and again with his initials G.B.S. at the conclusion), nine pages (typed to the rectos only), 4to, n.p., 27th January 1923. The manuscript, with extensive revisions and corrections in Shaw's hand (indicated in bold text below) is entitled The Unprotected Child and The Law, and states, in part, 'It is a curious feature of British civilization that our police arrangements, though they enable the adult male citizen to go about unarmed and the adult female to walk abroad unescorted, fail to protect children from the most detestable forms of molestation. The woman who goes shopping with a sense of complete security, and never has a moment's anxiety as to the return of her husband from his work unrobbed and unbruised, cannot feel that her children, even at the smallest age compatible with independent locomotion, are safe in broad daylight in a London park, much less in the camera obscura of the picture theatre......When she realizes too late that the law, professing to deter the criminal, is really calculated to deter the prosecutor, she is sometimes moved to suspect that this effect is not wholly unintended. There is something more than motherly indignation to support that suspicion. The few publicly articulate people who concern themselves about the matter, and who form the so-called public opinion that finds expression on the bench, seem to fall into two extremes with no middle. Either they are psychopathically excited by psychopathic outrages and frantically demand that the offenders be flogged or emasculated, or they regard the offence as an amiable weakness, and the notion that its consequences to the victim are necessarily serious as sentimental nonsense. They shew their reluctance to punish it by very light sentences, and by a resolute opposition to the raising of the age at which the consent (and by inference the enjoyment) of the child can be placed in defence. Thus between the flagellomaniacs who are making the offender's vice an excuse for gratifying their own peculiar form of it on the one hand, and the sympathetic amorists on the other, the children have to thank their luck rather than the law when they escape molestation. The matter is further complicated by men's dread of false charges, blackmail, and conspiracies between mother and child to 'put away' an inconvenient father.......Sir Basil Thompson......humorously suggests that all girls should be locked up until they are eighteen to save the police the trouble of investigating the stories they invent.....In fact the younger the child the more unrestrained the imaginative liar. Further differences between child and child in precocity are so inclaculable that we have Oscar Wilde giving sixteen as the age at which conscience of sex begins, and Rousseau, in his autobiography, giving the date in his own case at his birth: the net conclusion being that in the case of any individual child it is impossible either to accept any story on the ground that the teller is too young to have invented it, or to reject it as too grotesque to be credible......In view of these facts, it is impossible to exempt a child from the most searching cross examination when criminal proceedings are taken; yet from every point of view other than that of establishing or refuting a charge, cross examination is as undesirable as its necessarily bad effect on the child can make it. In short, the remedy offered by the criminal law may easily be worse than no remedy at all. It rubs violently into the child's mind an impression that had much better be obliterated, or, as that is hardly possible, minimized.......The danger to children is at its gravest when popular ignorance and superstition on matters of sex are left undispelled because of the taboo which forbids their being mentioned. Take for example the case of venereal disease. Few people realize that children are in special danger of being infected by it: they regard them as specially exempt from it because of their innocence. They do not know that there is a belief, widespread in our most ignorant classes, that a man suffering from such a disease can be cured by intercourse with a virgin; and that consequently, as childhood is the surest guarantee of virginity. childern are violated as a therapeutical measure, the only result. of course, being that the child is infected too......As far as I know, there is only one attempt being made to provide, by private subscription, a hospital for innocently infected children to which any sane mother would consent to send her child. That staggering fact illustrates the sort of consideration children get from our public authorities and the public conscience behind them......When we come to the remedies, we are forced to admit that what cannot be prevented cannot be remedied. Some of the preventive remedies are obvious enough. Wherever you have overcrowding and overwork both of children and adults, you get a high rate of incest with children as certainly as a high rate of zymotic disease. People who have bedrooms all to themselves as a matter of course, and who have plenty of sport and music and reading and pictures to divert them, cannot conceive a life in which young girls boast of being the mothers of their fathers' children; but this is an established modern industrial phenomenon; and the comfortable people may as well know that it exists and is part of the price of their comfort......If the question of how much population the country can bear is ever faced as it should be, the first point to be settled will be not one of heads per acre divided into wheat per acre, but of space available for separate bedrooms (not to say bathrooms) per head. When incest and promiscuity have been cut off at their source in poverty and drudgery, there will still be an irreducible minimum of criminal assault for which society at large is not responsible. For the decent and as far as possible harmless investigation of such cases we need special courts, women police, women jurors, judges, magistrates, advocates and doctors alongside the male ones, with none of them in any uniform recognizable by a child as a police uniform.....The publication of the child's name, or of portraits of it, should be made a serious offence; and the publication of the name of the accused person unless and until convicted should also be prohibited. There are many things shamelessly featured in our newspapers which are forbidden by French law and should be forbidden in every decent country. I must add that the advocates of complete license for the press have one argument which cannot be ignored.......As to punishments, when they are simply vindictive they are also simply wicked; and their effect on the imagination increases crime......´OWING TO LIMITATIONS IMPOSED BY THE SALEROOM, THE COMPLETE DESCRIPTION FOR THIS LOT CAN NOT DE DISPLAYED. PLEASE REFER TO IAA EUROPE DIRECTLY FOR FURTHER INFORMATION.

AUTOGRAPH LETTERS, MANUSCRIPTS & HISTORICAL DOCUMENTS AUCTION

Sale Date(s)
Lots: 600
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El Real del Campanario
num.12 Bajo B
Estepona
Malaga
29688
Spain

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Tags: Manuscript