First published in 1934, Preface to Action was written to provoke thought on society and its structure and to enable readers to make a considered judgement at election, particularly those with less time to make their decision.

The book discusses the conflict between wanting to make an informed political decision, and not having the time or all the information to do so. In light of this, Catlin brings together what he considers useful points to help guide readers towards a decision. He outlines his personal opinions and explains his reasons for them. Divided into three parts, the book first explores psychology and considers what institutional forms would best satisfy what he identifies as the major human instincts or impulses. The second part considers the community, whether it is state or nation, and what the best form of it is. The third part is a detailed exploration of the religions of Catholicism, Toryism, Fascism, and Communism.

Preface to Action will be of great appeal to those with an interest in twentieth century British and European history, the history of politics, the history of political thought, and political psychology.

part |133 pages

Part I

chapter § i|14 pages


chapter § ii|28 pages

The Erotic Impulse

chapter § iii|37 pages

The Economic Impulse

chapter § iv|33 pages

The Power Impulse

chapter § v|19 pages

The Religious Impulse

part |54 pages

Part II

chapter § i|28 pages

Is the State the Community?

chapter § ii|24 pages

Is the Nation the Community?

part |120 pages

Part III

chapter § i|12 pages

The Religion of Catholicism

chapter § ii|16 pages

The Religion of Toryism

chapter § iii|28 pages

The Religion of Fascism

chapter § iv|24 pages

The Religion of Communism

chapter § v|38 pages

The Conclusion of It All