HG Wells on the Future | BBC broadcasts from the father of science fiction

The Future of Europe | HG Wells Presents Dr Edvard Benes

HG Wells welcomes the former president of Czechoslovakia.

CHANNEL | Home Service

FIRST BROADCAST | 23 November 1939

DURATION | 33 minutes 02 seconds

FIRSTBROADCAST

1939

Synopsis

In this broadcast from the Foyles Literary Luncheon, Sir Ronald Storrs introduces author HG Wells, noting his prophetic ability to foresee such arrivals as the aeroplane, the wireless and the television. Wells takes to the platform to formally introduce his friend, the former president of the Czechoslovakian Republic, Dr Edvard Benes. Wells apologises for having been unable to prepare properly for this introduction, yet speaks eloquently and at length about his admiration and respect for 'the very great European statesman'. On taking the microphone, Dr Benes warns of the need for a new democracy to be established in Germany to stave off 'a barbarism far worse than that of the Dark Ages'.

Did you know?

Having been ousted as president of Czechoslovakia in 1938, Dr Benes spent World War II in England, from where he led the Czechoslovak government-in-exile. He reassumed the post of president in Czechoslovakia after the war, but resigned in June 1948 after the Communist Party gained control of the government. He died of natural causes just three months later.

Contributors

Sir Ronald Storrs
Presenter
Dr Edvard Benes
Contributor
Contributor

Related External Links

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Documents

Letter to HG Wells from the BBC.

Letter to HG Wells from the BBC

WRITTEN 1929
1 Page

An invitation to HG Wells to go on air for the first time.

Letter to HG Wells thanking him for his promise to broadcast on the BBC.

Letter to HG Wells thanking him for his promise to broadcast

WRITTEN 1929
2 Pages

HG Wells agrees to speak about world peace.

A note by HG Wells on his 'World peace' broadcast of 1929.

HG Wells on his 'World peace' broadcast of 1929

WRITTEN 1929
2 Pages

Wells reassures the BBC that his broadcast will be objective.

Memo from Hilda Matheson to John Reith regarding HG Wells broadcast.

Memo from Hilda Matheson to John Reith regarding HG Wells broadcast

WRITTEN 1929
1 Page

Will HG Wells's broadcast require 'toning down'?

Letter from Hilda Matheson to Dame Rachel Crowdy.

Letter from Hilda Matheson to Dame Rachel Crowdy

WRITTEN 1929
1 Page

Preparations for a broadcast by HG Wells.

Memo concerning HG Wells's Russian Talk.

Memo concerning HG Wells's Russian Talk

WRITTEN 1931
1 Page

Concerns that Wells has not submitted a manuscript go right to the top.

Memo about interview with HG Wells prior to Russian broadcast.

Record of Interview with HG Wells prior to Russian broadcast

WRITTEN 1931
1 Page

Wells makes a commitment to objectivity.

A letter from HG Wells to the BBC.

Letter from HG Wells to the BBC

WRITTEN 1942
1 Page

Wells responds to an invitation to speak about evolution.

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