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The World at War: BBC Doco

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    Posted: 11 Dec 2014 at 14:10


The World at War (1973–74) is a 26-episode British television documentary series chronicling the events of the Second World War. At the time of its completion in 1973, when I was teaching high school in Whyalla South Australia, it was the most expensive series ever made, costing £900,000.  It was produced by Jeremy Isaacs, a British television producer, and narrated by Laurence Olivier one of the most famous and revered actors of the 20th century.  It had a score composed by Carl Davis, an American-born conductor and composer.  A book, The World at War, was written by Mark Arnold-Forster, an English journalist, to accompany the TV series.

Since production was completed 41 years ago, The World at War has attracted huge acclaim and is now regarded as a landmark in British television history.  Following the time of its completion, and as the Second World War remained fresh in many people's minds, the producer Jeremy Isaacs was considered ahead of his time in resurrecting studies of military history.  The series focused on, among other things, portrayal of the devastating human experiences of the conflict; how life and death throughout the war years affected soldiers, sailors and airmen, civilians, the tragic victims of tyranny and, above all, concentration camp inmates.-Ron Price, with thanks to 7TWOTV, 8 & 9 April 2012, 11:45-1:00 a.m.

I’ve been involved in a war too

and, like millions of men who

came back from WW2 & were

cut-off from people, who could

not reintegrate into their society,

their world when they got home,

who were not understood, could

not adjust: I tired of this old-born

war.  I would shorten it if I didn’t

so ruinously adore each endearing

stratagem Your consummate & so

clever cunning devises--well not all--

I do not adore it all for I am a sorry

soldier who camps sometimes in ruins

and speaks from that weariness of battle

far-prolonged. So I fashion my paean to

vanquish dread and invoke1 victors: like

Haji Akhund, Abn-i-Abhar, Adib, Ibn-i-

Asdaq,2 on and on go their names, the

leaven that leaveneth this world of being

and furnisheth power for whatever I may

manifest, whatever wonders I may show

from that power which they furnisheth.3

1  Roger White, Lines from a Battlefield, Another Song Another Season, George Ronald, Oxford, 1979, p.111.

2 Departed Hands of the Cause. For their photos see The Baha’i World: 1963-1968, Volume XIV, pp. 445-457.

3 Baha’u’llah, Gleanings, Wilmette, 1956, p. 161.

Ron Price

9/4/'12 to 11/12/'14.


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