The 1932-33 England cricket tour of Australia was one of the most widely reported of all time. During a period when long-distance communications were either painfully slow or terrifically expensive, c. 130,000 words were wired across the world over a three-day period, costing a small fortune. Nor did interest in the tour wane within a few years, and even today, over eighty years after the victorious English side left Australia, more is written about this series than any other. The reason is simple: for the first time in the history of the game, controversy that took place on the field took on a political dimension, causing Dominions Secretary, Jimmy Thomas, to later recall: ‘no politics ever introduced in the British Empire caused me so much trouble as this damn bodyline bowling’.
The talk will be given by James Newton, Head of History at Highgate School.