Books February 2010
A review of Koestler: The Literary and Political Odyssey of a Twentieth-Century Skeptic by Michael Scammell.
Michael Scammell -->reviewed by Stephen Schwartz -->
Michael Scammell notes, at the end of this authorized biography to which he devoted some two decades’ work, that the centenary in 2005 of Arthur Koestler’s birth was “virtually ignored in Britain and the United States.” Yet, after reading this chronicle, the judgment of the Paris satirical newspaper Le Canard enchaîné, in 1981, still seems unchallengeable to me. The newspaper, on publication of the French edition of From Bricks to Babel, an extensive selection of Koestler’s writing, compared his work to a mirror held up to the twentieth century, accompanied by the thoughts of the mirror’s holder. That opinion was delivered before...
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