Monthly Archives: July 2015

Hulme and Anti-Humanism…

He was sent down from Cambridge for his part in a brawl. He hung Wyndham Lewis from the railings of Great Ormond Street. He was described by the sculptor Jacob Epstein as being “capable of kicking a theory as well … Continue reading

Posted in Appreciations, Conservatism, From the Archives | Leave a comment

Oakeshott and Scepticism…

A symptom and a cause of the decline of British conservatism has been the absence of philosophical voices. That the publication of Michael Oakeshott’s notebooks occasioned interest, then, is welcome; if only as it might inspire more interesting conversations. Oakeshott … Continue reading

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On the Perils of Being an Intellectual Outlaw…

I still like Christopher Hitchens. No, really, I do, and I say that despite disagreeing with almost all of his opinions: the one-size-fits-all liberal internationalism; the reckless interventionism; the dogmatic atheism and the socialist nostalgia. I say that despite disliking … Continue reading

Posted in Behaviour, Belief, Ideology | 1 Comment

Notes on Beginning a Novel…

You are not writing a novel if you are not writing. Books, like houses, are designed before they are built. Storytelling is no competition of speed. If your characters walked into the room would they have characters and would they … Continue reading

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Captive Minds…

How do intelligent men learn to love stupidity? How do artists come to appreciate barbarism? These questions troubled Czesław Miłosz as he wrote The Captive Mind. A Polish poet, in exile for his dissident stance, he wanted to explore the … Continue reading

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Utopian Cynicism…

Utopians might be characterised as men and women of an essentially optimistic nature. It can be so. Yet in some people the desire for paradise emerges from a great annoyance and even hatred towards the imperfect nature of the present. … Continue reading

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The Sporadic Sensitivity of Philip Larkin…

The exposure of hostile rhetoric aimed at immigrants, women and the poor diminished the posthumous reputation of Philip Larkin. Such insults were unearthed from his private correspondence, and had no harmful effects on any of their targets, but modern poets … Continue reading

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