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 George Mac-Donald Fraser

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Titus_Pibrac
Monsieur de Paris


Nombre de messages : 647
Age : 51
Localisation : Italie, Venise
Emploi : Ingénieur
Date d'inscription : 23/05/2008

MessageSujet: George Mac-Donald Fraser   Lun 28 Juil 2008 - 21:47

J'ignore bien qui sur le forum peut connaitre George Mac Donald Fraser, le génial créateur de Flashman, un héros anti-héros - anti-militariste à ses début, puis qui devient un redoutable officier et espion par la suite. Personnage touchant par ses faiblesses qui sont les notres et son courage qui fait réver beaucoup.

L'auteur était lui-me^me un ancien officier des Highlanders, qui combattit dur les japs sur le front birman. Reconverti dans le journalisme et dans le cinéma (auteur des scénarios des 3 moustiquaires avec Richard Chamberlain dans les années 70, puis d'Octopussy et d'autres films).

Mac Donald Fraser est mort cette année 2008 en janvier. Grand pourfendeur des politiques britanniques - comparant les leaders politiques anglais dont Tony Blair à des politiciens d'un pays du Tiers-Monde (et je dois confesser que cette déclaration est encore plus vraie pour la France, nonobstant M. Sarkozy - Caligula Minix - ou nain minable - comme dirait Goscinny s'il était encore vivant (j'ai voté pour lui - mais mes déclarations sur le forum me vaudront de passer à la bécane - je plaisante).



C'était aussi et avant tout - George Mac Donald Fraser - un partisan de la peine de mort - comme beaucoup sur le forum, ce qu'on peut supposer. Il me fait penser à Jean Raspail pour pas mal de choses.


Son avant-dernier livre, un essai "The Light's on at Signpost", reprend toute la thématique de pourquoi et comment la peine de mort et fait une critique acerbe des abolitionnistes -menteurs, obsédés et propagandistes fous (Crime and punishment, page 142).

Ahimé, je crois que M. Fraser a bien raison. Les opposants de la peine de mort nous racontent n'importe quoi. Les iraniens ou les chinois me semblent maintenant les vrais civilisés. Ce qui est triste - d'en arriver à ce constant.
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MessageSujet: Re: George Mac-Donald Fraser   Lun 28 Juil 2008 - 22:43

Bonsoir, Titus_Pibrac, Smile

iraniens ou les chinois vous semblent maintenant les vrais civilisés !

Sans vouloir polémiquer - je m'en tiendrais là - c'est une phrase assez étonnante, à laquelle je ne souscris pas.

Quant à monsieur Fraser, dont je ne connaissais que le héros, vous m'avez appris quel homme il était, et voila une lacune de combler.
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Titus_Pibrac
Monsieur de Paris


Nombre de messages : 647
Age : 51
Localisation : Italie, Venise
Emploi : Ingénieur
Date d'inscription : 23/05/2008

MessageSujet: Re: George Mac-Donald Fraser   Mar 29 Juil 2008 - 6:40

J'exagérais bien entendu. Mea culpa.
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MessageSujet: Re: George Mac-Donald Fraser   Mar 29 Juil 2008 - 6:51

Ci-joint le lien sur la chronique mortuaire de Fraser dans l'Economist:

http://www.economist.com/obituary/displaystory.cfm?story_id=10492913


D'autres liens sur Fraser sur le site du club Flashman:

http://www.harryflashman.org/GMF.htm


Citation :

George MacDonald Fraser
Jan 10th 2008
From The Economist print edition

George MacDonald Fraser, inventor of Flashman, died on January 2nd, aged 82
Rex Features
HARRY FLASHMAN never knew George MacDonald Fraser. That was a pity, because Mr Fraser knew every scrap about Flashman, from the points of his swaggering moustaches to the tips of his gleaming spurs. He knew him as a scoundrel, a liar, a cheat, a thief, a coward and, not least, a toady, ever able to make himself shine in the eyes of his braying superiors. And he revelled in him as perhaps the finest fictional rogue ever to grace the map of the British empire.

Mr Fraser had known him from the start of his career, when he was dragged bragging and hiccupping from the pages of “Tom Brown's Schooldays” and pitchforked out of Rugby; and he had followed him, like some devoted batman, through all his military campaigns, from Afghanistan to South Africa to the Indian wars. He had seen him frozen in a blanket in a corpse-strewn defile on the retreat from Kabul in 1842; almost split neatly in two by a grinning Chinaman in a top-knot while running guns down the Yangtse in 1860; struggling in an Indian swamp, after the great ghat massacre at Cawnpore, with what looked like man-eating crocodiles; and charging, by accident, for the Russian guns at Balaclava. As Flashman accumulated the tinware—the Victoria Cross, the Queen's Medal, the San Serafino Order of Purity and Truth (“richly deserved”), both he and Mr Fraser knew it was sheer terror that propelled him, delirium funkens, plus a large measure of luck. The great hero of Jallalabad was, in fact, “yellow as yesterday's custard”. But he always emerged in splendour.

And with women. Every Flashman novel writhed with them, preferably all bum, belly and bust, giggling and bouncing at the prospect of an officer “who had raked and ridden harder than most”. After the beauteous Fetnab (who “knew the ninety-seven ways of love...though...the seventy-fourth position turns out to be the same as the seventy-third, but with your fingers crossed”), came Lola Montez and Cassie and Susie the Bawd; and, finest of all, the Indian princess Lakshmibai, her “splendid golden nakedness” dressed in no more than bangles and a tiny veil. It was a serious disaster that could interrupt the tumbling for any long period of time.

Packed in a tea-chest
Mr Fraser had seen service too, far more soberly, with the Gordon Highlanders in Africa and the Fourteenth Army in Burma. He knew what it was like to be pinged by Japanese sniper fire, and had the medals to prove it. His own wartime adventures led him to write other stories about Private John McAuslan, “the dirtiest soldier in the world”—though his own particular cock-ups got him regularly demoted and not, like Flashman, moved smoothly from colonel to general. But, just like Flashman, he was sure there was little glory in war. Fighting was a job to be done, often reluctantly, with simple application and dogged common sense. As for the military virtues, “the best thing you can do with 'em is hang them on the wall in Bedlam.”

This was why there was no man better than Mr Fraser to stumble on the Flashman story. It began with his “discovery”, in 1965, of a batch of memoirs wrapped in oilskins and packed in a tea-chest in Ashby-de-la-Zouch, in Leicestershire. The first Flashman novel, written in a feverish 90 hours to get him out of a financial hole, was followed by 11 others and could have led to more, for Mr Fraser had never got started on the American Civil War. He brought his journalist's and historian's eye to bear on the “papers”, adding footnotes to correct Flashman's Arabic, adjust his dates and allow for possible unfairness to the fools and incompetents who commanded him. Generally, however, he found Flashman an impressively accurate observer. Between them they made the stories so good that some Americans thought they were real.

Would Flashman have liked him, had they met? Mr Fraser was a Scot, of course, solidly and loudly so, and Flashman had no love for Scotland. He found it (on his visits to Balmoral to the girlish Queen Victoria, all popeyes and buck teeth but “pretty enough beneath the neck”) a place of gloom and drizzle and long-faced holiness. He preferred Indian heat and sun. But Mr Fraser was a devoted son of the borders, born in Carlisle and writing both fact and fiction about the ruffian-reivers and cattle-stealers of the region: men who, in their shameless venturing and whoring and disrespect for law, were quite a lot like old Flashy, except that they were brave.

Flashman's more blatant chauvinism (“I pulled her across my knees and smartened her up with my riding switch”) and his racism (jabbering blacks and lounging sepoys would soon feel the smart of his rifle) were sometimes laid at Mr Fraser's door. But his own views were more moderately right-wing, extending to a liking for law and order and a horror of the metric system. And though he and Flashman between them seemed intent on savagely satirising the whole British imperial enterprise, the truth was more complicated. The novels illustrated both the folly of war and the unsung, unregarded heroism of the lower orders, the actual builders of the empire. In their sharp-sightedness, if not much else, here were two men who could clasp each other appreciatively by the hand.
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