Swastika Night.

  • Constantine, Murray [pseud. of Katharine Burdekin]
  • London : Victor Gollancz Ltd 1940


SKU: 5995 Category: Tags: ,


8vo, pp. 196. Original red boards, spine and front board lettered in black. Poor-quality paper lightly toned. Boards a touch marked, spine discoloured and a little worn at ends. Ownership inscription of E. Benson, Leeds to rear pastedown dated Aug. 1940, ink inscription to front pastedown ‘donated by Ernie Benson 1986’.


The Left Book Club edition of an important feminist dystopia, first published in 1937. Set 700 years after a Hitler victory in World War II when women have no rights or status save as childbearers, it anticipated both alternate history fiction about the war and the war itself, with this, second edition containing a publisher's note outlining the author's changes of opinion on the corruptive power of Nazism. Following this edition the novel was not republished until the Feminist Press edition of 1985, when the authorship of Katharine Burdekin (1896-1963) was established and its status has continued to grow since then - Darragh McManus wrote in The Guardian in 2009 that 'Swastika Night can be seen as a companion piece to Nineteen Eighty-Four, exploring the other side of the totalitarian coin with equal insight, prescience and humanity.'
This copy belonged to Communist organiser and bookshop proprietor Ernie Benson, author of the 2-volume autobiography 'To Struggle is to Live'.

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