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Common WritingEssays on Literary Culture and Public Debate$
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Stefan Collini

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780198758969

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198758969.001.0001

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‘New Orwells’?

‘New Orwells’?

Christopher Hitchens, Tony Judt, Timothy Garton Ash

Chapter:
(p.267) 11 ‘New Orwells’?
Source:
Common Writing
Author(s):

Stefan Collini

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198758969.003.0012

This chapter examines the work of three essayists and political commentators whose writing has attracted considerable attention in recent decades. Hitchens could be a dazzling and entertaining polemicist, though his later work was sometimes marred by a ‘contrarianism’ that was not always easy to distinguish from conservatism. Judt deployed great historical learning to reconsider the history of post-war Europe, though he was prone to a kind of reductive hostility in discussing left-wing intellectuals. Garton Ash has turned historically informed political analysis into a fine art, with vivid and penetrating accounts of key moments in contemporary history, though his journalism sometimes falls below the high standards of his more extended essays.

Keywords:   Christopher Hitchens, Tony Judt, Timothy Garton Ash, essayists, political commentators, political journalism, contemporary history, historical memory, George Orwell

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