Alex Deley, January 8, 2011 (view all comments by Alex Deley)
The loss of Tony Judt was sufficiently galling to caste doubts over the latter component of 2010 as a whole - Judt was after all not merely one of our greatest historians, but also, and perhaps somewhat covertly, one of the great moral philosophers of the past several decades. With Ill Fares the Land, Judt has written a pressing treatise on liberalism, what is means to be a creature of the left, and the importance of restoring the social state for the sake of the revitalization of a wider civil society and civic responsibility. This book is terse but carries great depth. It is not to be missed.
Bruce Bikle, January 1, 2011 (view all comments by Bruce Bikle)
Tony Judt's recent book (published right before is death)is addressed to the younger generation, and does a superb job of explaining what we have lost in the past 30-40 years both here in the US and Europe when we became more concerned with wealth and less with a social environment that works for us all. It's an instructive read by a world class historian and thinker, and it bears the attention of those who are asking "where are we going, and how might we change course?"
"Review A Day"
by Benjamin Moser, Harper's Magazine,
"For thirty years students have been complaining to me that 'it was easy for you': your generation had ideals and ideas, you believed in something, you were able to change things," Tony Judt writes in the introduction to his new book, Ill Fares the Lands. It is not, Judt argues, that young people are unaware of their world's many terrifying problems. They are. It is that "our disability is discursive: we simply do not know how to talk about these things any more." (read the entire Harper's Magazine review)
A gift to the next generation of engaged citizens, from one of our most celebrated intellectuals.
As the economic collapse of 2008 made clear, the social contract that defined postwar life in Europe and America-the guarantee of security, stability, and fairness-is no longer guaranteed; in fact, it's no longer part of the common discourse. Tony Judt, one of our leading historians and thinkers, offers the language we need to address our common needs, rejecting the nihilistic individualism of the far Right and the debunked socialism of the past. In reintroducing alternatives to the status quo, Judt invigorates our political conversation, furnishing the tools necessary to imagine a new form of governance and a better way of life.
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