Politics, Religion, and Love: The Story of H.H. Asquith, Venetia Stanley, and Edwin Montagu, Based on the Life and Letters of Edwin Samuel Montagu

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NYU Press, 1991 - History - 843 pages

This is the story of three fascinating and strong-willed individuals: H.H. Asquith, Prime Minister of England; his friend and confidant, Edwin Samuel Montagu, a Jewish member of the Cabinet, and also Secretary of State for India; and the third, the sexually liberated Venetia Stanley, a brilliant adnd politically sophisticated woman and a member of one of England's oldest aristocratic families.

This book is also a recital of racism and anti-semitism in England in the early century - not merely among the uneducated or the lunatic fringe of the Tory Party, but amoing the well-educated, the stars of Oxford and Cambridge, and the leaders of the Liberal Party as well. It demonstrates that even so educated and affluent a man as Montagu, almost totally assimilated, who spent a life time trying to escape his Judaism, who married a woman who had nothing but scorn for all religions - was not immune from the pain and humiliation of anti-semitism.

 

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Contents

Who Was Edwin S Montagu?
1
1 The Beginning
7
2 Childhood and Early Education 18791898
27
3 Cambridge and the Beginning of a Political Career
42
4 The Liberal Party and the Landslide of 1906
67
5 Asquith before 1906
74
6 Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Chancellor of the Exchequer 19061908
82
7 Venetia and the Beginning of a Romance 19081910
102
The Beginning 19151916
386
22 Montagu and Reconstruction JanuaryJune 1917
394
The Balfour Declaration
422
24 Secretary of State for India July 1917December 1918
450
25 The Marriage 19171918
484
26 The Best and Worst of Times 1919
492
27 The Marriage Continues to Deteriorate 1919
527
28 Censure and Shame 1920
538

8 The Political Scene 19091911
115
First Two Years 19101912
128
10 A Love Triangle Begins 19111912
165
11 The Trip to India October 1912March 1913
180
12 The Triangle Is Now in Place March 1913January 1914
198
Financial Secretary to the Treasury 1914
210
14 Five Months of Military and Naval Disasters August 4December 31 1914
238
15 Prelude to Political Disaster JanuaryMay 1915
254
16 Venetia Announces Engagement to Montagu Asquith Forms Coalition Government May 1915
278
17 Venetias Escape to Francethe Conversion and Marriage May June July 1915
301
18 The Coalition May 1915December 1916
327
19 Montagu at Munitions JulyDecember 1916
350
20 The Fall of Asquith December 1916
361
29 Reading and Montagu 1921
573
30 The Resignation January February March 1922
609
Pearl and the Birth of a Daughter 19211922
652
32 Alone at Eventide MarchDecember 1922
656
33 Personal and Political Darkness 1923
670
34 Despair and Death 1924
682
35 Venetia without Edwin 19241948
703
The Genealogy of Edwin S Montagu
731
Manuscript Sources and Abbreviations
735
Notes
737
Bibliography
807
Index
811
Copyright

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About the author (1991)

Naomi B. Levine, lawyer, graduate of Columbia Law School, editor of the Columbia Law Review, expert in constitutional law, was formerly the National Executive Director of the American Jewish Congress. Currently she is Senior Vice President of New York University.

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