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Before Mishima committed ritual suicide on 25 November 1970, he delivered a speech from a balcony in the garrison in central Tokyo, railing against Japan’s semi-pacifist postwar constitution.
Ideas drive history. But what if most ideas are evil?
Czapski survived his incarceration in a Soviet prison camp and went on to produce vivid paintings and prose. But his life and work was haunted by the massacre that he escaped.
The French philosopher Diderot was a hero of the Enlightenment who counselled Catherine the Great. Wisely, she ignored his advice.
When companies know more about us than we know about ourselves.
When I met the late JG Ballard for the first time, around 20 years ago in a Covent Garden restaurant, I found that he embodied everything I admired in his work.
“Before your LSD session, read Siddartha and Steppenwolf," advised Timothy Leary.
If we no longer seek virtue and salvation, we should blame the triumvirate of Machiavelli, Hobbes and Adam Smith.
As the far right rises across Europe, how can liberal democracies confront populist nationalism? New books by Francis Fukuyama and Kwame Anthony Appiah examine the perils of identity politics – but their solutions do not go far enough.
The Russian author turned 15 years in the Gulag into fiction of extraordinary daring. His stories are timely reminders of the human cost of communism.
Douglas Murray’s bestseller The Strange Death of Europe claims mass immigration is to blame for the continent’s “suicide”. But it is hubris, not Islam, that is dismantling the liberal world order.