My spontaneous aversion to England's Norman ruling class goes back a long way; and used to be so strong (in some respects) that until last week I had never been able to get myself to read (or watch an adaptation of) John Le Carre's famously excellent Cold War spy stories; often concerning the classic fictional character of George Smiley - and taking place in the world of the Normans.
Having found the 1965 movie of The spy who came in from the cold to be thought-provoking and resonant; I then watched another movie, and the BBC TV series of Tinker, Tailor Soldier, Spy and Smiley's People - starring Alec Guinness; and also listened to some more radio play adaptations. A real binge...
I enjoyed a lot about these works, and have found myself stimulated in several directions.
Yet at bottom I find the whole atmosphere of the social world depicted as alien. I dislike all of the characters - even Smiley - who all seem to have blunted humanity and zero metaphysical depth. I've had enough for now!
Even the undeniable courage of these Normans, seems to be tainted with a suspicion that it comes from insensibility combined with sensation-seeking (e.g. through sex, drink, violence, sadism, self-humiliation, infighting, betrayal, snobbery etc - anything that rings your bell, to pass the time).
Underpinning which is a weird sense of Norman tribalism - rooted in their assumed superiority to laws and rules intended for the little people - that destroys any possibility of genuine justice: and indeed any possibility of being personally affiliated to the cause of Good.
(This combination is seen very early in Norman-English history, for example The Anarchy.)
In other words; Le Carre's world (at least in these versions) is nihilistic and futile, and is inhabited by men and women who strike me as nihilistic at their very core.
I assume this reflects Le Carre's own (considerable) strengths, and limitations, as a Man. In an interview I watched he was extremely intelligent, insightful and interesting - yet underneath I sensed... nothing.
What I am talking about is something missing - something human that is missing*.
It's as if, for Normans life is a game - but nothing more than a game. The game is arbitrary (war, seduction, snobbery, diplomacy, sport, literature, careerism - it doesn't matter) - but the game has neither meaning nor purpose; because for Normans there is none to be had.
Each Norman plays a part, tries to play it well (or, at least, to sabotage the others) because that is the best way to fill-in time - but it is nothing more than a part which is played; and ultimately the game doesn't really matter, because nothing ultimately matters...
*I assume that this deficiency, and the consequent blankness, is what David Icke et al are getting at when they call these people (and some other social groups as well - Normans are not the only ones) reptilians, lizard-people, or actual extra-terrestrials. I would assume, rather, that it is some mixture of an innate deficiency in the capacity for love; with varying degrees of demonic influence and control.