Ernest van Someren: The good life

James Hinton

in Nine Wartime Lives

Published in print January 2010 | ISBN: 9780199574667
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191702167 | DOI:
Ernest van Someren: The good life

More Like This

Show all results sharing this subject:

  • Modern History (1700 to 1945)


Show Summary Details


This chapter focuses on wartime diarist Ernest van Someren. Ernest was a scientist, family man, civic activist, Quaker, pacifist, and socialist. He enjoyed a rich intellectual and cultural life in concert with his wife and friends in an affluent Home Counties suburb. But even while he lived the ‘new life’ Ernest had his devils to confront, if only because his lifestyle depended on a successful career as a research chemist in war industry. Reading between the lines, and with the help of his responses to MO's monthly directives, one can glimpse the ways in which his civic activism helped to assuage the contradiction he was living between his pacifist beliefs and the satisfactions he derived from his work in war industry and the privileged lifestyle that it paid for.

Keywords: Ernest van Someren; diaries; diarists; Second World War; chemists; pacifists; civic activist

Chapter.  6671 words. 

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.