War Within and Without

Lindbergh, Anne Morrow. War Within and Without: Diaries and Letters of Anne Morrow Lindbergh 1939-1944. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1980.

This is the last book in Anne Morrow Lindbergh’s series of diaries and letters. War Within and Without covers 1939 – 1944. In the beginning, the Lindberghs have just left France for America. The emphasis of War Within is World War II, of course, and the not so obvious private war the Lindberghs waged with public opinion concerning Charles’s views of Germany and the U.S involvement in the war. After spending nearly three years in Europe (England and France, mostly) the family returns to America where controversy over the political views of her husband continue to be criticized. All of this worries Anne very much as her husband is very vocal on these subjects. In view of the war, she has described this last book as coming full circle. World War I was raging when she was just seven years old. Underlying Anne’s very public life is the home life she struggled to keep private. Charles is “away” a great deal and Anne must entertain guests such as Antoine de Saint-Exupery on her own. She alludes to questioning what makes a good marriage. It leads one to believe there are hints of trouble with Charles. Anne does her best to convince the reader (herself, since it was her diary?) everything is fine. All the while she is crumbling under the pressure of being a good mother, writer, housekeeper, member of society, and of course, wife.

Telling quotes: “Both wars cracked open the worlds from which they erupted” (p xiii), “It is the striving after perfection that makes one an artist” (p 29), “Must get back to life after these days living in a world of the mind alone” (p 36), and “Then Monday he went off again and I have had a long week, tired from it, angry at myself, realizing I am doing too much and none of it well” (p 391).

Reason read: This is the last book I will read in honor of January being Journal Month. Finally!

Author fact: Lindbergh received six different honorary degrees from various institutions.

Book trivia: There is one grainy photo of Anne where credit is given to Charles. It makes me wonder who took the others. They seem “professional” compared to the intimacy of the one taken by Charles.

BookLust Twist: from More Book Lust in the chapter called “Journals and Letters: We Are All Voyeurs at Heart” (p 131).

Share Your Thoughts

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.