“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

That Long, Long Road Ends for Jane Russell

Jane Russell: your memories

One of the most popular sex symbols of the 1940s and 50s, Jane Russell, has
died in California.


She starred in Hollywood films such as The Paleface and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, alongside luminaries Bob Hope and Marilyn Monroe.
She was also heavily involved in charity work and through her organisation, World Adoption International Fund (WAIF), helped thousands of children find adoptive homes.
BBC News website readers have been sending their tributes and memories of the formidable pin-up.

Lou Slocum, Vista, US

I got to see Jane Russell last year for the first and only time when she appeared as a special guest at the Coronado Arts Ball in San Diego.
She was funny and feisty and even sang a tune. She had been performing regularly in a dinner show at the Radisson Hotel in Santa Maria, California where she lived.
She said the most common question asked of her was who was the best kisser in Hollywood. Her response? "Bob Hope - those blubbery lips - oh my God!"
At this year's Coronado Arts Ball, my lady friend bid on and won a personally signed photograph of Jane Russell from Howard Hughes' infamous movie, The Outlaw, which she gave to me.
I cherish it all the more now that Ms Russell has permanently left the stage.

Alan Walsh, Vancouver, Canada

I remember meeting Jane as a very young, very junior and very temporary bar assistant at the Broadway Club, Failsworth, Manchester where she appeared for one night only.
It was so long ago (I'm guessing approximately 1969) it should have disappeared into history but for the way she treated me - at the time an extremely callow youth.
She did, however, and most graciously, save my blushes when I was given the task of serving her refreshments backstage - twice.
She was appearing in a backwater compared to Hollywood but her professional attitude and demeanour varied not a jot from what I had seen on the big screen.
I'm sure she will be missed by those privileged enough to have known her.

B.D. Compton, Johannesburg, South Africa

I saw the The Outlaw in 1949 and I immediately had a crush on her at the ripe old age of eight.
However, her greatest role was in Gentleman Prefer Blondes, where she gave an outstanding performance with Marilyn Monroe.
She was a good singer and actress and certainly not the American equivalent to Jane Russell of England - she was far more talented in all departments.

Emma Fitzgerald, Surbiton, UK

I saw Jane Russell for the first time on the big screen at the British Film Institute in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, during its Howard Hughes season.
Any woman who can hold her own and perhaps shine even brighter in a film than Marilyn Monroe is one talented and sexy screen siren.
Her rendition of Diamonds are a Girl's Best Friend as Lorelei Lee is superb. Her comedy timing and quick witted delivery makes her a star.
Is There Anyone Here for Love? is a song made for Jane Russell's talents, very tongue in cheek.
Another Golden Hollywood icon gone.


  1. Lo! The moon ascending!
    Up from the East, the silvery round moon;
    Beautiful over the house-tops, ghastly, phantom moon;
    Immense and silent moon. - Walt Whitman

  2. desert rat said...
    Murdering the native born Jewish souls, so that non-Jewish adults can be allocated living space to facilitate their migration to Israel, that is a core part of Israeli State population policy.

    There is only so much room, in Israel, those Europeon migrants need the space, more than the Israeli need native born Jewish souls.

    Many of those 1.5 million Jewish souls that have been murdered in Israel, since 1948, cleansed so that Russians could migrate, south to the Mediterranean shoreline.

  3. Sorry to hear of her loss. Like so many of Hollywood's famous sex symbols, her image was very different from who she was in her personal life. She never considered herself a sex symbol at all. She was very religious, but did struggle with a drinking problem. She had an unwanted pregnancy as a teenager and was able to have children after that, so all her children were adopted. She also wasn't the tough broad she may have appeared to be. She was a very sweet, tender-hearted person. Rest in peace, Jane.

  4. I saw and read about her in the brittanica encyclopedia when I was 15.beautiful woman.much more beautiful than gwyneth paltrow or jennifer aniston or angelina jolie or madonna or......