Despite its failings, there’s world-class gossip here.Lownie denies Blunt and Burgess could have been lovers, for though Burgess was prodigiously endowed, both were bottoms.
Cambridge spy ring homosexual
Klugmann’s elder sister, Kitty, preceded him at Cambridge, going up to Girton in 1926 (the same year her brother started at Gresham’s) to read Moral Sciences.
Kitty paved the way for James, by joining and becoming disillusioned with the Labour Club, then giving it up in favour of the Cambridge University Socialist Society, which spawned an embryonic communist cell. Howarth’s (1979); I found no evidence of these claims, and the sole reference to Cornforth in Ray Monk’s life of Wittgenstein is as a communist.
She also frequented the Moral Sciences Club, where she encountered G. Moore, Bertrand Russell, Ludwig Wittgenstein and Maurice Cornforth, a postgraduate who was to become her husband. Most writers on the Cambridge spies have supposed that the ring originated in the secret Cambridge Conversazione Society, the Apostles.
This is where I began to doubt Andrews’s grasp of the Cambridge background. Andrews has obviously not consulted my book (which most scholars realised was based on their archives, though I couldn’t say so then), for the only spy he names as an Apostle is Burgess.
They included a good many of the of Geoff Andrews’s life of Klugmann (as well as several of the Hollywood Ten in exile from Mc Carthyism; curiously, none of them features in this biography).
Klugmann was a party functionary, loved and revered by my hosts and others as the CP’s chief theorist."Judd is a marxist with very rigorous morals and his ideology has pretty much taken over his life and it is all he talkes about." Attenborough says, particularly for Judd, there are small hints of what is to come in this timewarp nation.He says: "Judd talks about revolution coming, talking about how historical forces will change society.Had Lownie understood the lifelong fraternal bonds that gripped the Apostles, and the nature and (cryptic) descriptions of the Apostles’ discussions (he dismisses them as ‘abstract ideas’), he would have appreciated Keynes’s point.The Society was the crucible in which the Marxism of 15 ‘of the 31 Apostles elected between 19’ was fomented, and supplied the motivation for Blunt, Burgess and Straight to join Maclean, Philby and Cairncross in covert activities.James (as he renamed himself at school) was at the posh Hampstead prep school, the Hall, and then at Gresham’s, in Holt, Norfolk, which W. Auden had left the year before, and where his own group included Benjamin Britten, and future comrades Donald Maclean and Bernard Floud.