Philosophy

Interview with a writer: Lars Iyer

6 March 2013 9:40

People call Lars Iyer a ‘cult author,’ which is odd, because almost every paper to have reviewed him from here…

Discovering poetry: Samuel Daniel and the art of outliving death

4 March 2013 16:52

from Delia When winter snows upon thy golden hairs, And frost of age hath nipped thy flowers near; When dark…

Interview with a writer: John Gray

22 February 2013 9:59

In his new book The Silence of Animals, the philosopher John Gray explores why human beings continue to use myth…

Life of Pi asks questions of man, not God

8 January 2013 10:00

I’m conducting an experiment: Life of Pi concerns a basic metaphor about faith, how is that metaphor rendered in print and…

The Way the World Works by Nicholson Baker – an ideal Christmas present

28 November 2012 9:51

Nicholson Baker is intensely interested. He looks at the world like he has never seen it before, fixating on the…

Governing the world – an interview with Mark Mazower

12 October 2012 13:36

‘People begin to feel that… there are bonds of international duty binding all the nations of the earth together.’ This…

Should literature be political?

8 October 2012 17:46

‘Should literature be political?’ Njabulo S Ndebele asked Open Book Cape Town the other day. Ndebele, a renowned academic in…

Review – Sebastian Faulks’s A Possible Life

14 September 2012 17:38

In a promotional video clip, Sebastian Faulks describes his new novel, A Possible Life, as like ‘a symphony in five…

Freedom undermined by termites

12 September 2012 17:46

I have been reading a new book by Theodore Dalrymple which I highly recommend. Readers of the Spectator will need…

Booker Prize shortlist announced

11 September 2012 13:10

The 2012 Booker Prize shortlist has been announced. The runners and riders are: Tan Twan Eng, The Garden of Evening Mists…

Henry Kissinger’s education

7 August 2012 18:01

Only America, a friend of mine once insisted, could produce the New Criterion. This friend happened to be American, but…

Similar, but very different

17 July 2012 17:30

Richard Ford published his debut novel A Piece of My Heart in 1976.  But it was The Sportswriter — which…

Shelf Life special: The Skidelskys

28 June 2012 17:15

Robert and Edward Skidelsky have written a new book for our times, How Much Is Enough? The Love of Money,…

A thinker of arresting and compelling grandeur

27 November 2010 13:51

John Ruskin is the greatest writer whom, today, an educated person can admit not having read without embarrassment. One professes…

Are You Smarter than a French Teenager?

18 June 2009 15:32

The Bac began today with, as is traditional, the philosophy paper. Via Charles Bremner and Art Goldhammer, here are some…

When philosophers attack…

6 March 2009 14:23

Australian foreign minister Steven Smith sees trouble ahead: “This was very much an existentialist threat to Pakistan itself,” he said.…