George Edward Gordon Catlin (George Edward Gordon Catlin)

George Edward Gordon Catlin

Political Scientist, Philosopher. A strong proponent of Anglo-American cooperation, he worked for many years as a professor at Cornell University and other universities and colleges in the United States and Canada. He was born in Liverpool, the son of an Anglican clergyman. He had no formal schooling until the age of thirteen when he began attendance at St. Paul’s school, London, and later obtained a scholarship to study history at New College, Oxford. An early volunteer during the First World War, his services were rejected until 1918. During the interim period he served in the liquor traffic department of the Central Control Board, beginning research upon the liquor question to which he was to return a decade later. After a brief period with the army in Belgium he returned to Oxford where, during only a year and a half of study, he obtained his M.A. In 1925 he wrote the first of many articles advocating the closest Anglo-American cooperation on every level. His close connections with the United States did not end with his return to Britain in 1929, for he maintained a half time appointment at Cornell until 1935. The decision to finally leave the university where he had been happy and which had recognized the value of his work was precipitated by two concerns, one personal and the other professional. In the summer of 1925 he had married the writer, Vera Brittain, who refused to move to Cornell on a permanent basis. He also had ambitions in the area of practical politics. During the 1930s he travelled abroad extensively, journeying to Germany where he witnessed the Dimitrov trial, with its sinister foreshadowing of what Nazism was to become, to Russia for a prolonged examination of the newly established Communist regime and to Spain during the depths of the Civil War. In 1931 he met Gandhi for the first time in London and he became an early advocate of Indian independence, visiting the sub-continent in 1946 and again in 1947 and publishing his tribute to the assassinated leader, In the Path of Mahatma Gandhi, during 1948. His autobiography, on which he had worked sporadically since the end of the First World War, was finally published in 1972 as For God’s Sake, Go. He remarried in 1971, a year after Vera’s death. He died in 1979 at the age of 88. (bio by: julia&keld)


  • July, 29, 1896


  • February, 02, 1979


  • St James the Great Churchyard
  • Warwickshire
  • England

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