'Life is not worth living unless one can be indiscreet to intimate friends,' wrote Isaiah Berlin to a correspondent. Flourishing inaugurates a keenly awaited edition of Berlin's letters that might well adopt this remark as an epigraph. Berlin's life was enormously worth living, both for himself and for us; and fortunately he said a great deal to his friends on paper as well as in person. The indiscretions - only part of the story, of course - are not those of Everyman. Berlin is one of the towering intellectual figures of the twentieth century, the most famous English thinker of the post-war era, and the focus of growing interest and discussion. Above all, he is one of the best modern exponents of the disappearing art of letter-writing. When this volume opens Berlin is eighteen, a pupil at St Paul's School, London. He becomes an undergraduate at Oxford, then a Fellow of All Souls, where he writes his famous biography of Karl Marx. He then moves to New College to teach philosophy, and after the outbreak of the World War 2 sails to America in somewhat mysterious circumstances with Guy Burgess. He stays in the USA, working for the British Government, until July 1946, when he returns to Oxford. Berlin's letters are marvellously accessible, and as entertaining as a novel. During the two decades covered here we see his personality and career growing and blooming. In America he writes a regular telegram to his anxious parents, often saying just 'Flourishing'; the word is entirely apt, not only for his wartime experience, but for the whole of his early life, vividly displayed in this book in all its multi-faceted delightfulness. (2003-05-13)
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Both as a social document and for intellectual insights this is worth the money ( Eric Christiansen, The Spectator 2004-12-17)
Brilliantly chronicling the growth of a mind edited with devotion, scholarship and verve ( Roy Foster, TLS 2004-12-21)
Flourishing is the first volume of a keenly awaited edition of the marvellously readable and entertaining letters of the most famous English intellectual of the last century. (2003-05-13)
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Descrizione libro Random House, 2004. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. Codice libro della libreria SONG070117420X
Descrizione libro Random House, 2004. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. Codice libro della libreria DADAX070117420X