Christopher Hitchens


In this mini-series the saga of redemption, as frequently manifested in the form of “comebacks,” is investigated. REDEMPTION ONE is here. and REDEMPTION TWO is hereRead REDEMPTION ONE before REDEMPTION THREE, inserting REDEMPTION TWO between them.

Christian Dior - Runway Paris Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2011

John Galliano, redeemable or not, is alive. 


b. Better Off Dead? Two cases of Dubious Post-Mortem Redemption

As the example of time illustrates in the case of Adler, exogenous elements factor in whilst public figures are on a path towards redemption. Interestingly, the most practical way to pursue redemption might be dying. The death of a public person continues–to this day of  non-secular dimensions–to make the majority of media consumers feel a predominant desire to respect their deceased status. This theory effectively extends to the redemption of some of the most controversial individuals.



Margaret Thatcher’s death sparked a discourse on the very topic of the appropriateness of global media industries using unnecessary euphemisms following the passing of public figures. The mentality of “one must not speak ill of the dead” looms as a dangerous approach when it pertains to political leaders. By picking and choosing the legacy of politically-engaged people, those who pick and choose create a false record of the events that carved the lives of others.

Thatcher’s individual saga as a leadership paradigm certainly includes grand successes. She was elected thrice as the Prime Minister of the UK and was both the first female PM of the UK and first female leader of a Western country in recent history. Additionally, she actively introduced her set of conservative, nationalist political beliefs, widely known as Thatcherism.

Heated debate surrounded Thatcherism, as well as Thatcher herself. For media outlets to neglect the heavy criticism she received–and often persuasively argued against–because of her death appears callous, but also oxymoronic at its core subject, because it contradicts the nature of the person Thatcher was: a self-proclaimed “conviction politician.” Her priority was staying true to her values, despite the anticipated reaction her values would yield. It seems highly unlikely Thatcher herself would hesitate to speak ill of the dead. READ MORE >

Behind the Scenes & Massive People & Mean / 2 Comments
July 12th, 2013 / 9:58 am

Mid-trip Books Update

Studious readers of this blog remember my post a few weeks ago about trying to figure out what books to pack for my trip to Hong Kong. Well, the seven I brought were the Oppen, Schulz, Cohen, Offill, Hempel, Kierkegaard, and Bloom. Also, Bluets by Maggie Nelson (Wave), the review copy of which arrived literally minutes before I left for the airport. Of those, I’ve finished the Cohen and the Bloom, have been picking at the Oppen (sparingly, but I dig what I’m seeing), am bottomed out about halfway through the Schulz, and haven’t touched any of the others. But that’s not to say I’ve only read two books. At a sweet secondhand store here in HK called Book Attic (that’s 10 Amoy street, if you’re passing through) I picked up a few titles. After the jump, I talk about the books I bought, and it becomes clear why I’ve illustrated this post with a photo of the International Criminal Court at The Hague.


Uncategorized / 20 Comments
August 2nd, 2009 / 9:38 am