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Life Arts    H4'ed 8/6/16

Early man enjoyed simple and primitive pleasures

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A high-ranking primitive
A high-ranking primitive
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"Primitive Man"--a series by Major Ralph Hamilton (1918-1999)

Background: The truth is Ralph held a somewhat cynical view of humanity; it's evident to anyone who has seen his cartoons. He was always nice to people and animals (he often reminded people of Mark Twain); he just felt that humanity's record inspired trepidation rather than admiration. He was willing to poke fun at taboo subjects, and as one friend said, "Ralph was an equal opportunity cynic." I suggest it was his WW2 experience that jaundiced his view of humankind. As a prisoner of the Nazis, his captors marched him and his fellow prisoners through a demolished Germany to show the American pilots the effects of the bombings they'd helped conduct, including dead civilians. He included himself in the family of human primates, so he didn't feel superior. In fact I sensed he felt deep remorse for his part in WW2.


Early man enjoyed simple pleasures
Early man enjoyed simple pleasures
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Ralph Hamilton-Biography

Ralph in cockpit of his P-51, Dxford, England, 1944.
Ralph in cockpit of his P-51, Dxford, England, 1944.
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(Article changed on August 9, 2016 at 04:34)

(Article changed on August 10, 2016 at 18:13)


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A teacher and reporter in California.

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