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The Forum > Article Comments > Diana emotional revolutionary? Queen Elizabeth emotional wasteland? > Comments

Diana emotional revolutionary? Queen Elizabeth emotional wasteland? : Comments

By Helen Pringle, published 10/6/2005

Helen Pringle argues Queen Elizabeth is one of the few upholders of the value of reticence in public life and should be admired.

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One day there may be a plethora of books written about the present Queen of England, (probably when she is deceased). But something that may be overlooked is the fact that no 2 Commonwealth countries have ever been at war with each other, which in these times would be a definite plus. Maybe more countries should actually join the Commonwealth, and Iím particularly thinking of one country that has bombed about 20 other countries since the end of WW2.

So the rather traditional, and sometimes remote Queen Elizabeth may have achieved more than many people will give her credit for.

As far as being an ďemotional revolutionary Ē I would think Dianne was, but not always in a positive way. She had overly unrealistic and overly romantic notions about being a princess and becomeing a member of the royal family. She had her picture in more magazines than most people have had hot meals, and obviously played up to the press whenever possible. She hardly ever spoke a word, and I donít know what she was ever involved in, other than having her picture taken while watching other people remove land mines. She eventually took everything she could from Prince Charles, and then ran around the country with all and sundry, which was not being a particularly good role model for her 2 sons
Posted by Timkins, Friday, 10 June 2005 11:08:39 AM
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Nice piece Helen.

The Queen is roughly that same age as my mother, through whom I can detect a number of the cultural groundings that may also have had a significant influence on the young Elizabeth. The most obvious of these is that she was a teenager at the outbreak of WWII, of itself a seriously life-changing experience. Six of their most emotionally formative years spent in fear of their life and the future of their country certainly had its impact on my parents, as I am sure it similarly affected the Queen.

She would also have closely observed her parents, who bore a tremendous responsibility - not for the conduct of the war itself, but as behavioural role models for their people. Their was little room in those years for heart-on-the-sleeve emotionalism, and a high value was placed on self-control.

It is hardly surprising that she has very different emotional standards from non-contemporaries, who are nonetheless happy to judge her through the lens of their own conflict-free, post-Woodstock life experiences.
Posted by Pericles, Friday, 10 June 2005 12:12:13 PM
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Helen

Thank your for an interesting, refreshing and balanced article. For me, there was validity in everything that you had to say. And you even demonstrated your "balance" by declaring what you do know and do not know.

I saw the Queen when I was a youngster at the Williamtown RAAF Base. She was pretty, gentle, and smiling - such were my memories as a "baby boomer"!

I am not a Royalist - nor am I a Republican. Having said that, I watched the second episode of "The Queen's Castle" on Wednesday night. I found the whole thing quite fascinating - even though the masses of wealth made my stomach churn. How people can live steeped in such rigid tradition and wealth is beyond me. But then, the Queen and Princess Diana would not be able to comprehend the paucity of my childhood in monetary terms - or the richness of my childhood grounded in the notion of a loving and struggling extended post WWII family.

I have no doubt that your article will re-ignite the Royalist/Republican debate - and that's probably a good thing given the current national and international climate in Australia.

My gut feeling is that both women were/are sad and angry with their respective husbands.

Cheers
Posted by kalweb, Friday, 10 June 2005 6:14:28 PM
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Kalweb,
Oh, I donít think the husbands have much to do with it. As mentioned previously, there has never been a war between two Commonwealth countries, and considering the diversity and number of these countries, it is unlikely that this is coincidental. It is probably because of the influence of the Queen, and perhaps the Westminster system.

However the influence of the Queen has not been so effective with many of the women in her life, including Princess Margaret, Princess Anne, Princess Diana, the Duchess of York, and probably people like Margaret Thatcher. Why the Queen has not been able to more positively influence these women remains something of a mystery.
Posted by Timkins, Friday, 10 June 2005 11:04:05 PM
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Timkins - you always have something interesting to say. I hadn't thought of the point that you are making. I wonder if anyone else has [thought of it I mean]?

Cheers
Kay
PS: one of your few posts without rats 'n stats! (just joking!)
Posted by kalweb, Saturday, 11 June 2005 6:02:49 PM
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Yes, good point Timkins, she has hardly been a role model for any of the women surrounding her. And I would hate to have been Prince Charles or Di or Fergie or Margs. A formidable woman. It's better to be a Corgi or a steaming horse's neck. The fact is, she is a woman of great wealth and power thanks to a bastardry of birth but she has as much to do with running this country as my next door neighbour's dog (who isn't a corgi) As to whether she sheds a tear over Di, Madge or all the dead people in the royal family to try and make her human.... we all cry in private and I'm sure she does. That doesn't make her different. If she does, she;s human. I've always figured she was human, but doesn't deserve my curtsey. Beneath the bequeaths, the bequests and the adding to the obscene wealth, I'll save my curtseys for the likes of someone like Mandela.
Posted by Di, Saturday, 11 June 2005 8:36:09 PM
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