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Old 03-14-2009, 01:20 PM   #1
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Hichens, Robert Smythe: The Return Of The Soul. V1. 14 Mar 2009

Robert Smythe Hichens (November 14, 1864 – July 20, 1950) was an English journalist and novelist.
Born in Speldhurst in Kent, he was educated at Clifton College, the Royal College of Music, and the London School of Journalism.
He wrote lyrics for music, stories, and collaborated in successful plays. He is best remembered now, perhaps, for his satire on Oscar Wilde, The Green Carnation (1894), his novels that were made into films — The Garden of Allah (pub. 1904) and The Paradine Case (pub. 1933) — and the story "How Love Came to Professor Guildea", which has been frequently anthologized. His novel "Felix" (1902) is an early fictional treatment of hypodermic morphine addiction.
Hichens' classic novel The Green Carnation has been republished as a hardcover volume in 2006.
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Theories! What is the good of theories? They are the scourges that lash our minds in modern days, lash them into confusion, perplexity, despair. I have never been troubled by them before. Why should I be troubled by them now? And the absurdity of Professor Black's is surely obvious. A child would laugh at it. Yes, a child! I have never been a diary writer. I have never been able to understand the amusement of sitting down late at night and scrawling minutely in some hidden book every paltry incident of one's paltry days. People say it is so interesting to read the entries years afterwards. To read, as a man, the menu that I ate through as a boy, the love-story that I was actor in, the tragedy that I brought about, the debt that I have never paid—how could it profit me? To keep a diary has always seemed to me merely an addition to the ills of life. Yet now I have a hidden book, like the rest of the world, and I am scrawling in it to-day. Yes, but for a reason.
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