Nick Cohen pays tribute to the most ‘intellectually generous’ man he ever met
Why are so many who love the English language and human freedom in mourning for Christopher Hitchens? His full-length books never showed his talents to the full – not even God is not Great, his atheist bestseller. With typical modesty – and he was always self-critical, despite appearances to the contrary – he thought that only his literary essays would be read after his death. The dominance of theory-spouting obscurantists in university English departments meant he had that field pretty much to himself, and his writing on Larkin, Powell, Rushdie, Bellow and, above all, Orwell is indeed “imperishable,” to use his favourite word.
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