Friday, 2 March 2012

Anna Sebba - That Woman

That Woman

Many observers have commented on Wallis' appearance- flat and angular, with large hands and feet and a strong male-like jaw. Persons with DSD have to fit themselves into a world where social order clearly defines the two sexes . A person not clearly male or female had a "dangerously disruptive presence." Wallis would compensate by being ultra-enticing to men, and marrying very young. If Wallis did, indeed, have some form of DSD, she was driven by her genes to behave exactly as she did. But again creating the character of Wallis to fit a mold is not justified. That Wallis was abnormal in any way is very unlikely.

The character of Edward is revealed throughout in the book. The author speculates that the Prince may have been autistic or have the lesser malady, Asperser's Syndrome but this seems far- fetched, as autistic individuals have trouble with verbal communication, and Edward spoke well. There is no substantiation whatever for Edward's being autistic. The Prince, however, seemed to have stayed as emotionally immature as an adolescent when he was well into his thirties. He appeared to require his girlfriends to be mother-figures or to dominate him. Many samples are given of Wallis' humiliating him before guests, bossing him around like a lackey. At a party he would follow her around like a dog. Edward was very likely sadomasochistic according to the author.

Edward's refusal to give up Wallis created a constitutional crisis and the atmosphere in England at the time is well described in the book with members of parliament in a dither. Wallis was frequently threatened but finally, after the abdication, the couple was married in the Chateau de Cande near Paris. The rooms of the chateau were filled lavishly to the brim with peonies and other spring flowers but precisely seven English people attended the marriage ceremony. Seven, for the ex- king of England. Although the title Her Royal Highness was refused to be awarded to Wallis, in their future homes the Duchess was addressed by the royal title and visitors were obliged to curtsey.

Should Wallis Simpson be awarded a posthumous George Cross? It becomes abundantly clear in Anne Sebba’s biography that the late Duchess of Windsor did Britain an enormous service when she allowed Edward VIII to abdicate so he could run off with her.
The Prince of Wales was more than a liability – he was “a depressed adolescent… worryingly unsafe, he could be certified”, according to Lord Wigram, George V’s private secretary. “Certain cells in his brain have never grown,” murmured another courtier, Sir Alan Lascelles.
Madness was less of a problem, though, than the Prince’s chumminess with the Germans and pro-appeasement politicians. He and Wallis were feted by Mussolini in Venice, stayed at the Ritz in Madrid when Spain was run by Franco and visited Hitler in Berchtesgaden, where they were photographed among the swastikas. The Nazis “were ready to exploit the King’s sympathies”, and even after the abdication there were plans to install him as a puppet monarch should Britain have been successfully invaded.  Read the full article here:-

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