Theodore Dalrymple

Theodore Dalrymple

Theodore Dalrymple is an author and retired doctor who has written for many publications round the world, including the Spectator (London), the Wall Street Journal (New York) and The Australian (Sydney). He writes a monthly column in New English Review and is contributing editor of the City Journal of New York. His latest book is Admirable Evasions: How Psychology Undermines Morality, Encounter Books.


Murder, He Wrote

Mar 17 2018

There have long been complaints about crime—the quality of it, I mean, not the quantity. It seems so sordid and ordinary these days by comparison

Cultural Caviar

A Question of Quackery

Mar 10 2018

One cannot blame anyone for having failed to do the impossible, but the fact is, roughly speaking, the science (or study) of psychology has added


Singing Penguins, Half Moon Island

Singing for Sanity

Mar 03 2018

I have too much respect for music to sing myself, as my voice is such that it makes the average crow sound like Fischer-Dieskau. It


Off Guard

Feb 24 2018

I would make a very bad bodyguard—not that it has ever been my ambition to be one. I would be useless not merely because I


In Defense of Mediocrity

Feb 17 2018

Of recent months, several children of friends of mine have asked my help in preparing what they call a personal statement in their application for

Cultural Caviar

Tariq Ramadan

Observing Ramadan

Feb 10 2018

I have met Tariq Ramadan only once in my life and was very impressed by him—impressed unfavorably, that is. He seemed to me then the


London, England

For the Love of Hate

Feb 03 2018

Last week I stayed in a part of London on the border between a rich and a poor part of the city: on one side


Help Wanted: Save Civilization

Jan 27 2018

There is nothing quite as pleasing as to contemplate the imminent end of the world or the downfall of civilization. It gives you a sense


Haitian flag

Adding Injury to Insult

Jan 20 2018

I went last week to a production of Rigoletto, the revival of a production first staged in 2001. A criticism that I read in advance


Mary Neal

Mary Neal Lives On

Jan 13 2018

While researching a book recently, I came across the figure of Max Plowman, a minor writer of the 1910s, ’20s, ’30s, and very early ’40s


How Journaling Can Help You

Jan 06 2018

I suspect that I am of the last generation that ever considers writing anything by longhand. Indeed, there are reported to be places in America


City of Lights, Camera, Action

Dec 30 2017

Paris is by far the best city in the world for cinema. At least, it is the best city known to me; perhaps Irkutsk or

Cultural Caviar

Speaking UNOGese

Dec 23 2017

On a recent visit to Geneva, somebody handed me a pamphlet titled 170 Daily Actions to Transform Our World, produced, so an understandably self-effacing line

Cultural Caviar

Geneva Airport

Skip the Ads

Dec 16 2017

By their adverts shall ye know them; such, at any rate, is my supposition whenever I arrive at any airport. It did not surprise me

Cultural Caviar

Quiet Please

Dec 09 2017

One of the most denied of all human rights is that to silence. I do not mean by this the right to remain silent when

Cultural Caviar

Fight Makes Right

Dec 02 2017

Last week, I spoke at a writers’ festival and there was a demonstration against the following speaker who was known for her sulfurous views. The


Jug Jargon

Nov 25 2017

One of the pleasures of working as a prison doctor was to learn the language of prison. It was often colorful and expressive, and it


Lord of the Flies

Nov 18 2017

I returned recently to my house in France for a brief break. The weather was of the best—a cloudless sunny sky, warm and dry. It

Cultural Caviar

The Sock Fairy: A Complicated Relationship

Nov 11 2017

Life is full of irritations, major and minor. One of the minor irritations is the activity of the Sock Fairy, the sprite who seems to

Cultural Caviar

Charles-Édouard Jeanneret-Gris known as Le Corbusier

Le Corbusier: Liar, Cheat, Thief, and Plagiarist

Nov 04 2017

Some time ago, I was asked to review a vast biography of Bertolt Brecht, the German playwright and poet, by an admirer of his work.


The Way of Che

Oct 28 2017

The Irish Post Office has issued a stamp to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of the death of Ernesto Guevara. This is, presumably, because he was

Cultural Caviar

The Matter of the Meat

Oct 21 2017

I arrived at my house in France recently to find the roses eaten by deer and a drystone wall damaged by wild boar in their


A Tourist at Muharram

Oct 14 2017

There is nothing so odd, bizarre, and sometimes disgusting as other people’s customs. To adapt and paraphrase Professor Higgins in My Fair Lady with regard

Cultural Caviar

An Air-Conditioned Life

Oct 07 2017

It is a strange life, and none stranger than in the Gulf—the Persian Gulf, I mean, not that of Mexico, or even that of Carpentaria—where

Cultural Caviar

Giffard Hotel, Worcester

No Such Thing as a Free Lunch

Sep 30 2017

Recently I made reference to the criticism Simon Leys made of a book by Maria-Antonietta Macchiocchi. He said that the most charitable interpretation that could


Pierre Ryckmans aka Simon Leys.

The Price of Idiocy

Sep 23 2017

When I was asked to name the contemporary writer whom I most admired, I used without hesitation to say—until he died in 2014—Pierre Ryckmans, better