Performing Seals

Christopher Hitchens

  • Partisans: Marriage, Politics and Betrayal Among the New York Intellectuals by David Laskin
    Simon and Schuster, 319 pp, US $26.00, January 2000, ISBN 0 684 81565 6

A man I met told me that F.R. Leavis had once been invited to Columbia University to talk, and was afterwards bidden to a reception in his own honour. The co-editor of Scrutiny had been very much himself and, after his departure, was discussed as visitors tend to be. A certain elderly member of the English Department even observed: ‘He seemed perfectly all right to me. I can’t think why everybody calls him “Queenie”.’

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