Mason gives a very good description of washing, including the differential equation that shows how it takes place. Haist shows the effects of pH on washing and I have shown the effects of pH on swell both here and in my book. Swell is maximized at pH 9 and minimized at pH 4.5. Washing and fixing are best at pH 9 and worst at pH 4.5. Kodak sold fixers that worked at both pH values. At these different swell values, the fixers must be totally different in order to contain hardeners.
Michael has it backwards wrt pH vs swell and fix and wash rate.
Anchell and Troop is much more thoroughly researched compared to Anchell. Bill Troop actually talked to Grant Haist to confirm many of the statements in A&T. The soap analogy by Anchell is reasonable but not entirely accurate.