Toynbee and Young Indiana Jones

July 10 2008

Michael Maloney as the young Arnold Toynbee in The Adventures of Young Indiana Jones.

The episode was originally called Paris, May 1919 and was shown on ABC on July 24 1993.

The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles ran in twenty-eight episodes in 1992-93 and as four additional television films from 1994 to ’96. Most of the content was later re-presented in longer tranches. The series is then called The Adventures of Young Indiana Jones. This is from that (though the clip refers to the Chronicles). The episode is now called Winds of Change.

Toynbee had been a member of the middle eastern section of the British delegation to the Peace Conference. TE Lawrence (Douglas Henshall) introduces him to Gertrude Bell (Anna Massey) and the fictional Henry (“Indiana”) Jones (Sean Patrick Flanery).

Toynbee devotes a chapter to Lawrence in his book Acquaintances, 1967. He was no debunker of reputations. Of Gertrude Bell he only writes:

Gertrude Bell was a queen. Make a composite photograph of Zenobia, Á‘isha, and Hester Stanhope, and you have her.

Internet Movie Database:

“Kenneth Branagh’s pal Michael Maloney is also very good as Arnold Toynbee, though he is written as some sort of Nostradamus, foreseeing the future perhaps a bit too accurately. For once, our sympathy lies with the Germans, being forced to take the blame for the entire war and to pay the consequences.”

But Toynbee was clairvoyant on this. In 1915, years before that semi-fictional moment, he had warned against the danger of over-humiliating Germany in Nationality and the War:

If we humiliate her, we shall strengthen the obsolete ideas in her consciousness more than ever – perhaps no longer the idea of “Plunder,” but certainly that of “Revenge,” which is much worse […].

Germany was led to pursue the policy which has culminated in this war, by the oppressive sense that her development was being cramped by the actions of her neighbours. […]

One thing is clear: whether Germany’s feeling of constriction has good grounds or not, we must avoid deliberately furnishing it with further justification than it has already.

In this clip, he is shown at the Hotel Majestic opposing the revenge-mentality of Clemenceau and as sceptical of Woodrow Wilson’s conception of a League of Nations. His final words are an echo of George Santayana’s aphorism in his The Life of Reason (5 volumes, 1905-6): “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” I have no evidence that Toynbee had read Santayana. He does not mention him in the Study.

His final memory of Versailles was bitter.

At a peace conference, I think inevitably, everything goes wrong, and to watch this happening after you’ve already lived through the war is a very tragic experience […].

That is from an unpublished part of his dialogue with Daisaku Ikeda, 1972 or ’3, which I quoted here.

The other quotations were from:

Acquaintances, OUP, 1967

Nationality and the War, Dent, 1915

6 Responses to “Toynbee and Young Indiana Jones”

  1. […] Toynbee and Young Indiana Jones […]

  2. davidderrick Says:

    According to Toynbee, in The Western Question in Greece and Turkey (1922), he was at the conference between December and April, not in May. The German delegation arrived on April 29, so I suppose he might have caught sight of the arrival. When were Bell and Lawerence there?

    The Germans were not allowed to negotiate.

  3. […] posted a clip a while back from The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, where Michael Maloney portrays Toynbee […]

  4. […] Toynbee and Young Indiana Jones […]

  5. […] Toynbee and Young Indiana Jones, post here about Toynbee and Lawrence at Versailles […]

  6. […] Here is the full Indiana Jones episode of which I showed a clip here. […]

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