I could retreat here.
Photography by Durston Saylo | Design: Eric J. Smith Architect
I’ve just finished The Madness of Crowds: Gender, Race and Identity by Douglas Murray. It opens…
We are going through a great crowd derangement. In public and in private, both online and off, people are behaving in ways that are increasingly irrational, feverish, herd-like and simply unpleasant.”
If you struggle to find a logic to follow in identity politics, if you’re somewhat mystified by the raging debates about gender versus sex, or the rights of actors or writers to present a perspective other than that of their own race-gender-sexuality, then this is the book for you.
As a result, I too found myself googling “European art” and “straight white couple”. I’ve so far resisted the temptation to google Nicki Minaj’s Anaconda video … but, the days are longer in self-isolation.
A valuable, insightful book.
There’s a taster in this interview from Uncommon Knowledge:
He who lets the world, or his own portion of it, choose his plan of life for him, has no need of any other faculty than the ape-like one of imitation. He who chooses his plan for himself, employs all his faculties. … Human nature is not a machine to be built after a model, and set to do exactly the work prescribed for it, but a tree, which requires to grow and develop itself on all sides, according to the tendency of the inward forces which make it a living thing.
John Stuart Mill (1806 – 1873), On Liberty
Execupundit’s Michael Wade points to a fascinating essay…
By the same token, what we could call behavioral poverty helps explain how some individuals spend their lives mired in poverty and social dysfunction. Behavioral poverty is reflected in the attitudes, values, and beliefs that justify entitlement thinking, the spurning of personal responsibility, and the rejection of traditional social mechanisms of advancement. It is characterized by high self-indulgence, low self-regulation, exploitation of others, and limited motivation and effort. It can be correlated with a range of antisocial, immoral, and imprudent behaviors, including substance abuse, gambling, insolvency, poor health habits, and crime.
There’s a new exhibition of William Blake’s work at the Tate Britain.
Despite this rather downbeat review, I find my interest heightened by ” the show’s focus on practicalities”:Continue reading “William Blake, freelancer?”
…with Nicholas Bate.
This is well worth a read.
From…Continue reading “The Z to A of personal wealth”
Another great podcast from CapX’s Free Exchange series. In this episode, Steven Pinker discusses his recent book, Enlightenment Now.
It’s a fascinating book, but I confess I’ve been reading it all year. The takeaway is clear but the wealth of data takes time to digest. The book is worth the work, but this 30-minute podcast will give you the gist.
You can also get it on iTunes, here.
Photo credit: Rose Lincoln / Harvard University
This week, screenwriter and actress Phoebe Waller-Bridge was defending herself against accusations of being posh and privileged.
Whenever someone is successful, others search for a reason. Ideally, that reason should be “unfair” in some way: privilege, poshness, nepotism, even a “natural talent” or “magic touch”.
Clearly, it shouldn’t involve hard work, dedication or focus.
Picture: British GQ/Jason Hetherington