William Golding’s eloquent plea for world peace

On the occasion of accepting his Nobel Prize for Literature in 1983, William Golding took the opportunity to call for common sense and peace.

I have been in many countries and I have found there people examining their own love of life, sense of peril, their own common sense. The one thing they cannot understand is why that same love of life, sense of peril and above all common sense, is not invariably shared among their leaders and rulers.

Then let me use what I suppose is my last minute of worldwide attention to speak not as one of a nation but as one of mankind. I use it to reach all men and women of power. Go back. Step back now. Agreement between you does not need cleverness, elaboration, manoeuvres. It needs common sense, and above all, a daring generosity. Give, give, give!

It would succeed because it would meet with worldwide relief, acclaim and rejoicing: and unborn generations will bless your name.

Beautifully put.

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