Ayer, Alfred Jules, 1910-1989

by Anthony Quinton

17 Apr 2016
0-19-726180-9 hbk
Number of pages

Sir Alfred Ayer. Elected Fellow of the British Academy 1952.

Extract relating to military intelligence work:

Ayer had a thoroughly enjoyable war, nearly all of it, not by his contrivance, well out of harm’s way. He joined the Welsh Guards in March 1940 and was commissioned in September of that year. He was soon redeployed to intelligence work, which seems a sensible decision by the authorities, and found himself interrogating German prisoners in London, using the linguistic skill acquired for the purpose of learning from the Vienna Circle. He went to New York on behalf of SOE and made visits to Accra, Algiers, Italy, and the south of France. The chapter devoted to this part of his war service in Part of My Life, the first, and better, of his two autobiographical volumes, is aptly called ‘More Cloak than Dagger’.

(See: List of humanities scholars who worked in military intelligence in the Second World War)

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