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Children of the revolution

David Aaronovitch is too forgiving of the joyless radical left, says Philip Hensher

Party Animals: My Family and other Communists

The collapse of communism in 1989 is the most significant event of our lifetimes but one which will continue to be surrounded by myth-making and reinvention for years to come. The political thinking that led up to it was despatched to the realms of historical curiosity and of lost causes, until the election of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the Labour Party in 2015. When the primary question posed by any audience was “What on earth were they thinking of?”, it sometimes seems as if credulity might be suspended across the board.

David Aaronovitch, these days, is a blamelessly liberal and sceptical columnist for The Times. His interesting though problematic childhood memoir Party Animals focuses on a marginal but important episode. If the moral issues remain fudged, no-one could blame Aaronovitch for evading a final plausible judgement.

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About Prospect Magazine

In Prospect’s February issue: Lawrence Summers questions Robert J Gordon’s thesis on the impact of the digital revolution, John Sawers, the former Chief of MI6, highlights how technology is making the work of spies harder and Frank Furedi examines the student movements demanding protection from the offensive and uncomfortable. Also in this issue: Gershom Gorenberg on Israel, Ben Judah on the complexity of London and Elizabeth Pisani on the impact of fake drugs. Plus Sam Tanenhaus on Obama’s gun control plans.
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