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Friday, December 16, 2011

Turkey Atheists Invoke Thanksgiving as Proof

Christopher Hitchens is gone.  I suspect he was most well-known for his vigorous atheism, which prompts this post’s playful title.  Entirely separate from his actual positions on things (with which I am far from in complete agreement), Hitchens was among my favorite writers.  Prolific, pugnacious, witty – a genuine thrill. 

I am sad that his voice is gone; I enjoyed reading  him.  I similarly grieved the loss of David Foster Wallace a few years ago; whatever the substance of DFW’s views, I loved reading the offerings of such a gigantic and rich intellect.   So it goes with Hitchens. 

How does this relate to law? It doesn’t, not directly.  But for the many of us in the academy who love to write, to explain, to speculate, to argue – to actively discharge our duties as teachers and thinkers –  Hitchens’ departure for the silent shores of eternity, however inevitable, is unwelcome.  

Hitch famously contended that spirits – he only believed in one type – improved his life and work.  Whether alcohol has such qualities for the rest of us is unresolved.  I think there’s something to it; it’s no accident fermented beverages are as old as civilization.  So I’ll conclude my virtual toast, and then conduct a real one.  Hitchens would no doubt approve.

Posted by Brendan Maher on December 16, 2011 at 06:16 PM | Permalink


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The world is so much diminished without his light and roar.

Posted by: Dan Markel | Dec 18, 2011 8:34:14 PM

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