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Rag Time And Tango
by Philip Guedalla
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THE AUTHORR.M.S. Orduna, 1936.RAGTIME ANDTANGOPHILIP GUEDALLAAh me arm aches, and the sleeve of me littlecoat is wore I am so eager to write it all offto me ant.To the strand of the Daughters of the Sunset,The Appletree, the singing and the gold.HIPPOLYTTTSLONDONHODDER AND STOUGHTONRAGTIME AND TANGO CONTAINS MR.PHILIP GUEDALLAS STUDIES OF THEAMERICAS, NORTH AND SOUTH, FORINCLUSION IN THE UNIFORM EDITIONOF HIS COLLECTED WORKS.FOR THIS VOLUME HE HAS ASSEMBLEDAND REVISED UNCOLLECTED PIECESCONQUISTADOR : AMERICAN FANTASIAARGENTINE TANGOTHE MODERN WORLD lies on loth sides of theAtlantic in the same way that civilisation once groupeditself round the Aegean and later y as its scale increased,along the coastline of the Mediterranean. For we livein the Atlantic age and nothing could be more lopsided than to take a merely unilateral view of thisphenomenon. The crusted European who regardsthe Americas as a colonial extension of his own continent is at least a century out of date, and the Americanwho thinks of Europe as a morgue of ruined buildingsand decaying institutions is just an illinformedprovincial. The simple truth is that our age owes itsbroad outline to the interplay of forces generated in thepowerhouses on both sides of the Atlantic and it ishardly possible to study modern Europe without someknowledge of America. Indeed, the pity is that so fewEuropeans seem to have the slightest means of acquiringany. For the crowded history of the Americas ispractically unexplored on this side of the ocean, whilstour grasp of the contemporary Transatlantic sceneappears to be confined to crime reports and StockExchange quotations.This unfortunate hiatus must be remedied by everymeans within our power and one class of the community is well situated io perform the duty, since somany European writers cross and recross the Atlanticwith the regularity of smokeroom gamblers. TheBritish author is a familiar, perhaps a too familiar,phenomenon in the United States, and the literaryFrenchman is a common object of the South Americanseashore. For the French go to Buenos Aires asnaturally as our own novelists head for the Middlevi RAGTIME AND TANGOWest. More fortunate than most, I have had opportunities of travel in both sections of the New World and my observations are assembled in the presentvolume. Ten years ago a tour of the United, Statestook me as far afield as California and Texas andthe printed consequences formed a volume calledCONQUISTADOR, which reappears here under theyear 1927. That was a survey of the country asprosperity climbed to the dizzy pinnacle 01929, whenMr. Coolidge reigned in the White House and shrewdlyasked, when I was introduced to him as a writer, forwhat newspaper I wrote and I take a modest pridein having diagnosed six years before my unpleasantdream came true that massproduction presupposesmassconsumption, and that consequently any interruption, however momentary, of the communitysability to consume would dislocate the entire . .
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