December 14, 2001
9:47 PM   Subscribe

"The Christmas truce was the last twitch of the 19th Century. By that, I mean it was the last public moment in which it was assumed that people were nice, and that the Dickens view of the world was a credible view." -- Paul Fussell

The Christmas Truce of 1914 is an interesting footnote in history where German and British soldiers stopped fighting and fraternized in the middle of the battlefield. Some witnesses have claimed that enemy soldiers played a friendly game of soccer.

The events have since been chronicled in print, song, and on film.
posted by MattS (4 comments total)
Isn't there a Paul McCartney tune about this, also? And the The Farm's "All Together Now?"
posted by muckster at 9:59 PM on December 14, 2001

For what little it is worth, the Paul McCartney song I was looking for is "Pipes of Peace," the video of which shows him in a trench, looking longingly at a picture of his bride, sharing a drink with the Germans, playing soccer in a mustard gas cloud etc.

If you are only going to listen to one song about the Christmas Truce this year, I recommend you make it "All Together Now," which at least has a satisfying groove.
posted by muckster at 10:10 PM on December 14, 2001

Dickens' view of the world was that people were nice? I must have been reading the wrong stuff....
posted by rushmc at 8:10 AM on December 15, 2001

I don't think he meant Dickens viewed the world entirely as somewhere where people were nice and happy all the time, but he has a lot of characters that redeem themselves in some significant way... who become genuinely good people. You don't see Sidney Cartons in 20th century literature all that often.
posted by dagnyscott at 7:00 PM on December 15, 2001

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