Some of the most compelling and enduring creative work of the late
Victorian and Edwardian Era came from committed imperialists and
conservatives. Their continuing popularity owes a great deal to the
way their guiding ideas resonated with modernism in the arts and
psychology. The analogy they perceived between the imperial
business of subjugating savage subjects and the civilised ego's
struggle to subdue the unruly savage within generated some of their
best artistic endeavours. In a series of thematically linked
chapters Imperium of the soul explores the work of writers Rudyard
Kipling, Joseph Conrad, Rider Haggard and John Buchan along with
the composer Edward Elgar and the architect Herbert Baker. It
culminates with an analysis of their mutual infatuation with T. E.
Lawrence - Lawrence of Arabia - who represented all their dreams
for the future British Empire but whose ultimate paralysis of
creative imagination exposed the fatal flaw in their
psycho-political project. -- .
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