“Recall to religion: £2,000,000,000 spent on battleships, aeroplanes, tanks, poison gas, submarines, bombs - Can “Thy kingdom come on earth” this way?”

Title

“Recall to religion: £2,000,000,000 spent on battleships, aeroplanes, tanks, poison gas, submarines, bombs - Can “Thy kingdom come on earth” this way?”

Description

This anti-war poster calls attention to the obscene sums of money spent on war preparations, and simultaneously suggests that military stockpiling inhibits God’s kingdom from flourishing. It calls to mind the Quaker peace testimony, which states that war is an affront to humans living together lovingly, for war destroys the goodness and light within us all. This poster links money to war and argues that money is to blame for war. The taxes paid to a government allow that nation to fund the production of war machines. It also evokes a view on war deeply embedded in a Christian reading of the peace testimony. The Northern Friends Peace Board’s poster, published in England, is addressed to a primarily Christian audience, and incorporates the peace testimony into Christian language by pointedly stating, “Can ‘[God’s] kingdom come to earth’ this way?” In other words, the poster suggests that God’s intended world cannot exist in a world dominated by war.

Creator

BRUCIA BREITENFELD

Source

Northern Friends Peace Board and the Friends Peace Committee

Date

1939

Citation

BRUCIA BREITENFELD, ““Recall to religion: £2,000,000,000 spent on battleships, aeroplanes, tanks, poison gas, submarines, bombs - Can “Thy kingdom come on earth” this way?”,” Testimonies in Art & Action: Igniting Pacifism in the Face of Total War, accessed December 13, 2019, https://ds-omeka.haverford.edu/peacetestimonies/items/show/245.

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