Christopher Hitchens is an immodest man with much to be immodest about, but can his Letters to a Young Contrarian be anything more than. Christopher Hitchens offers them the wisdom of a seasoned campaigner. Letters to a young contrarian. The spirit of may be a distant. Hitchens, a columnist for the Nation and Vanity Fair, and author, most recently, of The Trial of Henr.

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Description In the book that he was born to write, provocateur and best-selling author Christopher Hitchens inspires future generations of radicals, gadflies, mavericks, rebels, angry young youjg men, and dissidents. Suspect your own motives, and all excuses. Hitchens was also a political observer, whose best-selling books — the most famous being God Is Not Great — made him a staple of talk shows and lecture circuits.

They thought that they were defending an organic, harmonious and ordered society against nihilism, and they contraran this contemptuous word against those they regarded as the diseased, the christoper, the disloyal and the unsound.

Zola could be the pattern for any serious and humanistic radical, because he not only asserted the inalienable rights of the individual, but generalised his assault to encompass the vile roles played by clericalism, racial hatred, militarism and the fetishisation of “the nation”.

Hitchen-licious A mere paragraph into the text, you can already tell what you’re getting in with this book.

Letters to a Young Contrarian – Wikipedia

This book explores the entire range of “contrary positions”-from noble dissident to gratuitous pain in the butt. Indeed, the supply of enemies to rail against seems endless. When one engages in combative dialogue I say christoopher because vehemence in debate joung no vice either it is important to know exactly whom with one is engaging. I find this somewhat of a challenge to read having a dictionary and the Google handy is helpfuland that it provides an non-trivial obstacle to understanding the author’s points.


Letters to a Young Contrarian

There were some great momen I really, really wanted to like and enjoy this book. First, there’s reading it as an inspirational tract on living a life of contrariness and dissent and all the baggage that comes with such a life. Let’s remember that a yiung contrarian’ in ——the book’s publication date——probably would have no idea about the Bosnian war in the early 90s.

A secular humanist public intellectual whose reasoning is genuinely nuanced and whose humanism involves more than the blind insistence on the value of one’s own values is still a figure we are left wanting.

Letters to a Young Contrarian by Christopher Hitchens

An idea’s unpopularity does not make it true. This book is full of beauty and of impassioned pleas for intelligence, justice, and bravery of the most important sort. KevinR Ky, re-posted with slight fixes in The reason I enjoy reading Hitchens is not that he demonstrates rationally or empirically how the good life must be lived or what values are justifiable. People began to stand up at meetings and orate about how they felt, not about what or how they thought, and about who they were rather than what if anything they had done or stood for.

But when I am talking, especially to someone who may very well know more than me about any given subject, I go over each sentence that may escape my lips, in my head this also depends on my blood-alcohol level.

The Hindus had the wit to see and the courage to proclaim the fact; Nirvana, the goal of their striving, is nothingness. Overall, I found hitches style stilted and stodgy, his referencing of Orwell and Adorno and the like unexciting and expected, and his name-dropping of dear friends Rushdie, Amis, McEwan insecure. He knows it very well himself though I’m not sure most of those who lump him with Dawkins or Harris do.

The book also contains some of the critiques of religion and religious belief which Hitchens would later develop in his polemic God Is Not Great: Some of the advice that Hitchens gives his mock student may seem a little cliche in parts, but even there he presents it in such a witty and honest way as to still make it insightful.


Through the years reading Christopher Hitchens has been hit or miss for me. Talk of Balkan atrocities in the s wasn’t exactly riveting for me — and he’s aware of a tendency to bore and addresses it, as he does all his potential faults, but still.

Jan 07, Jacob J.

He can be pretentious stop quoting conrrarian in random languages I don’t speak! Disputations are an essential part of crawling toward truth, but let us not get caught up in tautology.

To quote a few particularly pertinent and summative passages: At around the same time, and alarmed in a different way by many of the same things the morbid relationship of the cold war to the nuclear arms raceProfessor EP Thompson proposed that we live “as if” a free and independent Europe contragian existed. Don’t be afraid to be thought arrogant or selfish.

The Hitch is back in town

I cannot more highly recommend this book to any person who wants to think for themselves and stand apart from the crowd. Just my contrarian yokng.

I often appear uninterested often enough, I amin what other people are saying to me, or I am insufferable and condescending. Allow me to give you a paragraph that I marked as I went along:.

Apr 09, Chaunceton Bird rated it really liked it. Noted how he worked into a sentence the Shakespearean sonnet I memorized in Poetry “trouble deaf heavens htchens my bootless cries”.