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Holiday Reading

Recommendations from the Claremont Institute

4:41 PM, Dec 14, 2011 • By MATTHEW CONTINETTI
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Our friends at the Claremont Institute have published their annual list of recommended reading. Contributors include familiar names such as Hadley Arkes, Cheryl Miller, and Mark Blitz, along with Christopher Caldwell and yours truly. Here's Chris:

At the turn of this century, there was a vogue for asking who the greatest man of the last one was. Had I read more Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn back then, I would have been less inclined to answer, lazily, with the name of some mere politician. The 20th century was often about trials not exploits, about undergoing rather than daring. One of the least surprising things in the world is that intelligent people should make their way back to religion as they reflect on this. Solzhenitsyn was the bravest and the most brilliant of the undergoers, not just a novelist but also an independent-minded religious thinker, a formidable historian, and a poet by temperament. Often he writes as if he hasn't a political bone in his body. Communism is to Solzhenitsyn what Johnson is to Boswell and melancholy is to Robert Burton—the occasion for writing about life in all its variety.

You can read the rest, as well as my recommendations, here.

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