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John Gray is the New Statesman’s lead book reviewer. His latest book is The Soul of the Marionette: A Short Enquiry into Human Freedom.
Ideas drive history. But what if most ideas are evil?
The European election results confirm that centre-ground elites are losing control and make a no-deal Brexit more likely than ever.
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 ruling elite failed to grasp that the 2016 referendum changed politics irrevocably.
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.