How did you hear of Dalrymple?

One of the greatest writers living today

Re: How did you hear of Dalrymple?

Postby Nadia » 29 Jan 2012, 23:45

I'd just finished being a student and saw a copy of 'Our Culture, Whats Left of It' in my local library. I'd never even heard of Dalrymple before but was thrilled to be reading a book that I could agree with. I looked up more of his works and whilst I defiantly don't agree with everything he says its so refreshing to read someone willing to make a sensible argument about the state of society without descending into angry Daily Mail styled rantings or Guardian like winging.
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Re: How did you hear of Dalrymple?

Postby Paul » 28 Feb 2012, 00:45

An American gentleman introduced me to TD, online on a cricket forum I used to frequent, by posting a link to a City Journal article (I forget which now) which I read and instantly identified with. This was maybe about 7 years ago.

Thank-you Tom, a lawyer from Los Angeles, and an Anglophile, not least because he's a rather rare American who discovered and fell in love with Test Cricket.

I have since purchased and read Life at the Bottom (darkly hilarious and depressingly true at the same time) and Junk Medicine (ditto). I should buy more books.
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Re: How did you hear of Dalrymple?

Postby Tomasz » 01 Mar 2012, 20:17

Absolutely by accident. After second episode Upstairs Downstairs,I wanted to find opinion about so many unreal things: ethnic minorities, lesbians, girl with Down syndrom living with rest of family (check the story cousins of Queen Mother). So by google i found forum and started to look tekst wroted by mr Dalrymple (i still don't know how to pronounce it). Very intelligent man and I agree with most or even all his opinions. Lack of discipline and responsability, starts from school, benefit culture, lack real punishement for crimes, slowly kills this country.
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Re: How did you hear of Dalrymple?

Postby Liviu » 02 Mar 2012, 20:51

I came to read my first Darlymple article via a link from aldaily.com website, 3 years ago. I can’t remember the subject, but it made a strong impression on me. As a consequence I started searching for more articles and discovered that many more were available on city-journal.com and newenglishreview.org (and, to a lesser extent, on other websites as well).

I remember that for a week I kept on reading one text after another, with a sense of revelation similar only to the discoveries made in adolescence.
What stroke me the most was how deep I had already absorbed many leftist attitudes and frames of thinking – even as I thought of myself as being center-right. Reading Darlymple was a wake-up call and it was the moment I began to reconsider the value of clear moral judgment. I understood then how deeply embedded in everyday life relativism has become and how socially and personally destructive it is.

I first found this forum half a year ago, by searching for Dalrymple articles and I am a regular visitor ever since. Not belonging to the Anglo-sphere (I am Romanian and living in Romania), and with a limited command of the English language, I cannot contribute much to the forum, but I very much appreciate the contributors.
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Re: How did you hear of Dalrymple?

Postby Elliott » 03 Mar 2012, 03:57

I have to say, lserbanescu, that your English is virtually perfect. You shouldn't be shy about contributing to the forum. :)
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Re: How did you hear of Dalrymple?

Postby Liviu » 03 Mar 2012, 14:00

Thank you Elliott, I will try it.
Nevertheless, in the majority of cases there is not much for me to say because the others have already express it better :)
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Re: How did you hear of Dalrymple?

Postby Gavin » 03 Mar 2012, 17:02

lserbanescu, just three things:

  • It sounds like you found this site around its launch time then.
  • I felt as you did when I first read Dalrymple.
  • To second Elliott, your written English is far superior to that of many a native English person, so you can be quite confident about contributing.

I'll contact you separately about your username in case you wish to put this as a capitalised first name to fit in with the site convention.
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Re: How did you hear of Dalrymple?

Postby Mike » 05 Mar 2012, 19:55

Liviu wrote:Reading Darlymple was a wake-up call and it was the moment I began to reconsider the value of clear moral judgment.


That bolded section describes perfectly how reading TD has changed my attitudes as well.

By the way, Liviu, don't be at all embarrassed about your English, it's excellent!
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Re: How did you hear of Dalrymple?

Postby Heather » 22 May 2012, 13:14

I can't recall the first time I ever read Dalrymple. I read a lot of libertarian and conservative blogs and news sources, and his name and essays pop up occasionally. I was always impressed, but was going through a libertarian "anything goes, so long as it's not hurting anyone else" phase and not quite ready to go back to my conservative roots.

Last summer I had a baby, which really made me think about life, society, and morality more than usual, especially since my own sister turned out nearly sociopathic. How could we have the same parents, same experiences, the same easy middle-American childhood and turn out so differently? What if my poor little newborn turned out like that?

Then the shootings in Norway happened and I came upon this WSJ article. This short interview was a major turning point in my understanding of morality. I realized that I had always assumed that people have a "good" inner core. I started reading as many Dalrymple articles as I could find, and finally started realizing that goodness must be cultivated. I still can't exactly figure out where my sister went wrong, but she and many others I know will constantly insist, like the man in the article who threw ammonia on his girlfriend's face, that "I'm a good person. That wasn't the real me who did that." I too had bought into that harmful worldview. It was a revelation to me.

PS, since this is my first post, I'll mention here that I'm sometimes sleep-deprived and usually spend my day jabbering with a toddler. Sometimes I skip straight over relevent information and then make astounding errors in logic. Please go easy on me and correct me gently :)
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Re: How did you hear of Dalrymple?

Postby Gavin » 22 May 2012, 14:13

Hello Heather - many thanks for your contribution. I think you hit the nail on the head when you say "goodness needs to be cultivated". Distilled, this is our primary disagreement with liberals, who seem to believe in a "state of nature" - that everybody is good at heart. Myself, I believe far more in the scenario of Lord of the Flies.

It's nice to have another woman on here, if I may say so. Please feel free to contribute at any time and even though people give their honest opinions on here, you will certainly be treated with courtesy.
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Re: How did you hear of Dalrymple?

Postby Andy JS » 04 Jul 2012, 04:35

I can recount that I wasted many years when I could have been reading TD's work but in fact didn't do so. My mother was at Birmingham University at the same time as him, on the same course, although she was about 2 years ahead of him. She mentioned TD a lot starting about 20 years ago because he was writing so many articles in various journals. I could have read them myself but didn't bother to do so. It was only about 5 years ago that I finally starting reading his books and articles myself.

She also believes he was on the same COMEX trip to India in 1969 that TD was on although she doesn't think she spoke to him during the expedition. There is one photo from that trip which may include TD but it's difficult to tell. Incidentally, the trip included time in Afghanistan and Iran. Herat and Kabul were visited in the former.
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Re: How did you hear of Dalrymple?

Postby Rachel » 05 Jul 2012, 18:15

Welcome Andy.
It's nice to see someone with a personal connection to TD here.
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Re: How did you hear of Dalrymple?

Postby Roger » 12 Aug 2012, 16:20

Funnily enough it was while reading comments on the Guardian website a while back that I saw a poster going by the name of TheodoreDalrymple. Despite obviously not being the genuine article, there were many posters asking "is it really you?". The poster (who, it appears, has since been banned with all posts deleted) seemed to be of a Randian-libertarian bent, posting such gems as "we only have one relationship to each other: utility" and was naturally a target of scorn.

This piqued my curiosity and I set out to find out who the real Theodore Dalrymple was and what his politics really were. After a brief skim over his Wikipedia article and some Amazon reviews I asked for a couple of books when prompted for Christmas present ideas. I enjoyed these immensely (especially Spoilt Rotten) and have since bought the majority of Dalrymple's newer works on Kindle. While I don't always see eye to eye with a Dalrymple piece, I am grateful for the clarity of both thought and speech that evokes memories of reading Orwell's essays, and always feel as though I am learning something, even if only a Latin phrase.
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Re: How did you hear of Dalrymple?

Postby Gavin » 12 Aug 2012, 18:10

Welcome to the forum Roger! Thanks for contributing.

That's a bit cheeky of someone to use "TheodoreDalrymple" name as a username. It is not TD's view that we have no relationship to each other than utility either, I am sure.
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Re: How did you hear of Dalrymple?

Postby Ellen Jolly » 17 Aug 2012, 17:40

I have just discovered him today, having read his column in the Telegraph about aid to India.

I have spent a rather hot afternoon in France reading several more of his articles from the links on this website and I have been very impressed by the broad range of subjects on which he comments and the thoughtfulness of his approach.
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