Andrew Sullivan established his own Book Club, sometime after September 11, and he recommended the (at the time) recent Why Orwell Matters by Christopher Hitchens, who has himself left us.

I purchased the book at about that time.  Book Review No. 19 deals with it only now, but not for any shortcomings of the book.  It's well written, and it's Mr Hitchens's attempt -- perhaps surprisingly, inspired by conservative historian Robert Conquest -- to explain George Orwell's differences with, and the continued relevance in these times, of those differences to the left, the right, the British, the United States, feminists, the academy, and literati.  It's useful to have as a reference, to understand the mind-set of people arguing from various perspectives, and also to remind yourself how little has changed in public policy positions over the past century or so.

(Cross-posted to 50 Book Challenge.)

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