Download how fascism works in pdf or read how fascism works in pdf online books in PDF, EPUB and Mobi Format. Click Download or Read Online button to get how fascism works in pdf book now. This site is like a library, Use search box in the widget to get ebook that you want.

How Fascism Works

Autor: Jason Stanley
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 0525511849
File Size: 30,47 MB
Format: PDF
Read: 4648
Download or Read Book
“Reveals how the liberties of the people wither when voters embrace politicians who promote the divisive politics of us versus them.”—David Cay Johnston, author of The Making of Donald Trump and It’s Even Worse Than You Think “This is an important and essential book.”—Errol Morris, filmmaker and author of The Ashtray Fascist politics are running rampant in America today—and spreading around the world. A Yale philosopher identifies the ten pillars of fascist politics, and charts their horrifying rise and deep history. As the child of refugees of World War II Europe and a renowned philosopher and scholar of propaganda, Jason Stanley has a deep understanding of how democratic societies can be vulnerable to fascism: Nations don’t have to be fascist to suffer from fascist politics. In fact, fascism’s roots have been present in the United States for more than a century. Alarmed by the pervasive rise of fascist tactics both at home and around the globe, Stanley focuses here on the structures that unite them, laying out and analyzing the ten pillars of fascist politics—the language and beliefs that separate people into an “us” and a “them.” He knits together reflections on history, philosophy, sociology, and critical race theory with stories from contemporary Hungary, Poland, India, Myanmar, and the United States, among other nations. He makes clear the immense danger of underestimating the cumulative power of these tactics, which include exploiting a mythic version of a nation’s past; propaganda that twists the language of democratic ideals against themselves; anti-intellectualism directed against universities and experts; law and order politics predicated on the assumption that members of minority groups are criminals; and fierce attacks on labor groups and welfare. These mechanisms all build on one another, creating and reinforcing divisions and shaping a society vulnerable to the appeals of authoritarian leadership. By uncovering disturbing patterns that are as prevalent today as ever, Stanley reveals that the stuff of politics—charged by rhetoric and myth—can quickly become policy and reality. Only by recognizing fascists politics, he argues, may we resist its most harmful effects and return to democratic ideals. “With unsettling insight and disturbing clarity, How Fascism Works is an essential guidebook to our current national dilemma of democracy vs. authoritarianism.”—William Jelani Cobb, author of The Substance of Hope

How Propaganda Works

Autor: Jason Stanley
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 0691173427
File Size: 30,81 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
Read: 934
Download or Read Book
Our democracy today is fraught with political campaigns, lobbyists, liberal media, and Fox News commentators, all using language to influence the way we think and reason about public issues. Even so, many of us believe that propaganda and manipulation aren't problems for us—not in the way they were for the totalitarian societies of the mid-twentieth century. In How Propaganda Works, Jason Stanley demonstrates that more attention needs to be paid. He examines how propaganda operates subtly, how it undermines democracy—particularly the ideals of democratic deliberation and equality—and how it has damaged democracies of the past. Focusing on the shortcomings of liberal democratic states, Stanley provides a historically grounded introduction to democratic political theory as a window into the misuse of democratic vocabulary for propaganda's selfish purposes. He lays out historical examples, such as the restructuring of the US public school system at the turn of the twentieth century, to explore how the language of democracy is sometimes used to mask an undemocratic reality. Drawing from a range of sources, including feminist theory, critical race theory, epistemology, formal semantics, educational theory, and social and cognitive psychology, he explains how the manipulative and hypocritical declaration of flawed beliefs and ideologies arises from and perpetuates inequalities in society, such as the racial injustices that commonly occur in the United States. How Propaganda Works shows that an understanding of propaganda and its mechanisms is essential for the preservation and protection of liberal democracies everywhere.

Fascism A Warning

Autor: Madeleine Albright
Publisher: HarperCollins
ISBN: 006293127X
File Size: 30,16 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
Read: 9700
Download or Read Book
#1 New York Times Bestseller Best Books of 2018 --The Economist A personal and urgent examination of Fascism in the twentieth century and how its legacy shapes today’s world, written by one of America’s most admired public servants, the first woman to serve as U.S. secretary of state A Fascist, observes Madeleine Albright, “is someone who claims to speak for a whole nation or group, is utterly unconcerned with the rights of others, and is willing to use violence and whatever other means are necessary to achieve the goals he or she might have.” The twentieth century was defined by the clash between democracy and Fascism, a struggle that created uncertainty about the survival of human freedom and left millions dead. Given the horrors of that experience, one might expect the world to reject the spiritual successors to Hitler and Mussolini should they arise in our era. In Fascism: A Warning, Madeleine Albright draws on her experiences as a child in war-torn Europe and her distinguished career as a diplomat to question that assumption. Fascism, as she shows, not only endured through the twentieth century but now presents a more virulent threat to peace and justice than at any time since the end of World War II. The momentum toward democracy that swept the world when the Berlin Wall fell has gone into reverse. The United States, which historically championed the free world, is led by a president who exacerbates division and heaps scorn on democratic institutions. In many countries, economic, technological, and cultural factors are weakening the political center and empowering the extremes of right and left. Contemporary leaders such as Vladimir Putin and Kim Jong-un are employing many of the tactics used by Fascists in the 1920s and 30s. Fascism: A Warning is a book for our times that is relevant to all times. Written by someone who has not only studied history but helped to shape it, this call to arms teaches us the lessons we must understand and the questions we must answer if we are to save ourselves from repeating the tragic errors of the past.

The Substance Of Hope

Autor: William Jelani Cobb
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA
ISBN: 080271739X
File Size: 17,77 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
Read: 4606
Download or Read Book
Traces the ways in which black leadership and politics have evolved since the civil rights era, evaluating such topics as Barack Obama's achievements and paradigm shifts within the African-American electorate.

Liberal Fascism

Autor: Jonah Goldberg
Publisher: Crown Forum
ISBN: 9780385517690
File Size: 20,60 MB
Format: PDF
Read: 6535
Download or Read Book
“Fascists,” “Brownshirts,” “jackbooted stormtroopers”—such are the insults typically hurled at conservatives by their liberal opponents. Calling someone a fascist is the fastest way to shut them up, defining their views as beyond the political pale. But who are the real fascists in our midst? Liberal Fascism offers a startling new perspective on the theories and practices that define fascist politics. Replacing conveniently manufactured myths with surprising and enlightening research, Jonah Goldberg reminds us that the original fascists were really on the left, and that liberals from Woodrow Wilson to FDR to Hillary Clinton have advocated policies and principles remarkably similar to those of Hitler's National Socialism and Mussolini's Fascism. Contrary to what most people think, the Nazis were ardent socialists (hence the term “National socialism”). They believed in free health care and guaranteed jobs. They confiscated inherited wealth and spent vast sums on public education. They purged the church from public policy, promoted a new form of pagan spirituality, and inserted the authority of the state into every nook and cranny of daily life. The Nazis declared war on smoking, supported abortion, euthanasia, and gun control. They loathed the free market, provided generous pensions for the elderly, and maintained a strict racial quota system in their universities—where campus speech codes were all the rage. The Nazis led the world in organic farming and alternative medicine. Hitler was a strict vegetarian, and Himmler was an animal rights activist. Do these striking parallels mean that today’s liberals are genocidal maniacs, intent on conquering the world and imposing a new racial order? Not at all. Yet it is hard to deny that modern progressivism and classical fascism shared the same intellectual roots. We often forget, for example, that Mussolini and Hitler had many admirers in the United States. W.E.B. Du Bois was inspired by Hitler's Germany, and Irving Berlin praised Mussolini in song. Many fascist tenets were espoused by American progressives like John Dewey and Woodrow Wilson, and FDR incorporated fascist policies in the New Deal. Fascism was an international movement that appeared in different forms in different countries, depending on the vagaries of national culture and temperament. In Germany, fascism appeared as genocidal racist nationalism. In America, it took a “friendlier,” more liberal form. The modern heirs of this “friendly fascist” tradition include the New York Times, the Democratic Party, the Ivy League professoriate, and the liberals of Hollywood. The quintessential Liberal Fascist isn't an SS storm trooper; it is a female grade school teacher with an education degree from Brown or Swarthmore. These assertions may sound strange to modern ears, but that is because we have forgotten what fascism is. In this angry, funny, smart, contentious book, Jonah Goldberg turns our preconceptions inside out and shows us the true meaning of Liberal Fascism.

A History Of Fascism 1914 1945

Autor: Stanley G. Payne
Publisher: University of Wisconsin Pres
ISBN: 0299148734
File Size: 18,59 MB
Format: PDF
Read: 3535
Download or Read Book
“A History of Fascism is an invaluable sourcebook, offering a rare combination of detailed information and thoughtful analysis. It is a masterpiece of comparative history, for the comparisons enhance our understanding of each part of the whole. The term ‘fascist,’ used so freely these days as a pejorative epithet that has nearly lost its meaning, is precisely defined, carefully applied and skillfully explained. The analysis effectively restores the dimension of evil.”—Susan Zuccotti, The Nation “A magisterial, wholly accessible, engaging study. . . . Payne defines fascism as a form of ultranationalism espousing a myth of national rebirth and marked by extreme elitism, mobilization of the masses, exaltation of hierarchy and subordination, oppression of women and an embrace of violence and war as virtues.”—Publishers Weekly

The Anatomy Of Fascism

Autor: Robert O. Paxton
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0307428125
File Size: 21,69 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
Read: 837
Download or Read Book
What is fascism? By focusing on the concrete: what the fascists did, rather than what they said, the esteemed historian Robert O. Paxton answers this question for the first time. From the first violent uniformed bands beating up “enemies of the state,” through Mussolini’s rise to power, to Germany’s fascist radicalization in World War II, Paxton shows clearly why fascists came to power in some countries and not others, and explores whether fascism could exist outside the early-twentieth-century European setting in which it emerged. "A deeply intelligent and very readable book. . . . Historical analysis at its best." –The Economist The Anatomy of Fascism will have a lasting impact on our understanding of modern European history, just as Paxton’s classic Vichy France redefined our vision of World War II. Based on a lifetime of research, this compelling and important book transforms our knowledge of fascism–“the major political innovation of the twentieth century, and the source of much of its pain.”

Fascism

Autor: Leon Trotsky
Publisher: Aakar Books
ISBN: 9788187879442
File Size: 15,61 MB
Format: PDF, Mobi
Read: 1455
Download or Read Book
Fascism, Which First Triumphed In Italy And Later In Germany And Afterwards In Many Countries As A Counter Revolutionary Mass Movement Showed Its Brutal Nature In Form Of A Bloody Dictatorship. It Proved Itself The Most Reactionary Rule Of The Bourgeoisie And Most Detrimental To The Working Class Movement. Today When The Advanced Capitalist Countries Also Facing The Economic Crisis, They Continuously Place Their Burden On The Underdeveloped Countries. As A Result Working Class And Toiling Masses Of Both Advanced And Backward Countries Face Immense Oppression. Alongside That The Fascist Movement Raises Its Head Everywhere. In India We Have Already Felt The Sound Of The Boots Of Indian Nazis And Seen The Terror Of Saffron Flag Bearers.This Pamphlet Is A Part Of Trotsky S Writings On Fascism. Trotsky, Along With Lenin, Developed The Theory Of Permanent Revolution In 1905, Later Was Expelled From Soviet Russia During Stalinist Regime. He Fought With His Marxist Analysis Within The Third International, But Defeated To The Bureaucratic Apparatus Of The Party. After The Communist Parties Under Moscow S Direction Made A Decisive Right Turn To Collaborate With Bourgeois Democracy Against Fascism And Thus Subordinated The Proletarian Struggle, Trotsky Founded The Fourth International In 1938. Trotsky S Ideas Still Presents Itself Between Latin American And European Mass Movements And In Some Cases In Asia Also.This New Edition Features An Introduction Looking An Eye On Indian Context With An Objective Of Reorienting The Programmatic Debate Within The Indian Left

Making The Fascist Self

Autor: Mabel Berezin
Publisher: Cornell University Press
ISBN: 9780801484209
File Size: 5,36 MB
Format: PDF
Read: 8914
Download or Read Book
In her examination of the culture of Italian fascism, Mabel Berezin focuses on how Mussolini's regime consciously constructed a nonliberal public sphere to support its political aims. Fascism stresses form over content, she believes, and the regime tried to build its political support through the careful construction and manipulation of public spectacles or rituals such as parades, commemoration ceremonies, and holiday festivities. The fascists believed they could rely on the motivating power of spectacle, and experiential symbols. In contrast with the liberal democratic notion of separable public and private selves, Italian fascism attempted to merge the public and private selves in political spectacles, creating communities of feeling in public piazzas. Such communities were only temporary, Berezin explains, and fascist identity was only formed to the extent that it could be articulated in a language of pre-existing cultural identities. In the Italian case, those identities meant the popular culture of Roman Catholicism and the cult of motherhood. Berezin hypothesizes that at particular historical moments certain social groups which perceive the division of public and private self as untenable on cultural grounds will gain political ascendance. Her hypothesis opens a new perspective on how fascism works.

How Democracies Die

Autor: Steven Levitsky
Publisher: Crown
ISBN: 1524762938
File Size: 11,68 MB
Format: PDF
Read: 3218
Download or Read Book
Fateful alliances -- Gatekeeping in America -- The great Republican abdication -- Subverting democracy -- The guardrails of democracy -- The unwritten rules of American politics -- The unraveling -- Trump against the guardrails -- Saving democracy

Fascism

Autor: Roger Griffin
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
ISBN: 1509520716
File Size: 15,52 MB
Format: PDF, Docs
Read: 5253
Download or Read Book
The word ‘fascism’ sometimes appears to have become a catch-all term of abuse, applicable to anyone on the political right, from Hitler to Donald Trump and from Putin to Thatcher. While some argue that it lacks any distinctive conceptual meaning at all, others have supplied highly elaborate definitions of its ‘essential’ features. It is therefore a concept that presents unique challenges for any student of political theory or history. In this accessible book, Roger Griffin, one of the world’s leading authorities on fascism, brings welcome clarity to this controversial ideology. He examines its origins and development as a political concept, from its historical beginnings in 1920s Italy up to the present day, and guides students through the confusing maze of debates surrounding the nature, definition and meaning of fascism. Elucidating with skill and precision its dynamic as a utopian ideology of national/racial rebirth, Griffin goes on to examine its post-Second World War mutations and its relevance to understanding contemporary right-wing political phenomena, ranging from Marine Le Pen to Golden Dawn. This concise and engaging volume will be of great interest to all students of political theory, the history of political thought, and modern history.

The Coming Of The American Behemoth

Autor: Michael Joseph Roberto
Publisher: NYU Press
ISBN: 158367733X
File Size: 7,41 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
Read: 1071
Download or Read Book
Most people in the United States have been trained to recognize fascism in movements such as Germany’s Third Reich or Italy’s National Fascist Party, where charismatic demagogues manipulate incensed, vengeful masses. We rarely think of fascism as linked to the essence of monopoly-finance capitalism, operating under the guise of American free-enterprise. But, as Michael Joseph Roberto argues, this is exactly where fascism’s embryonic forms began gestating in the United States, during the so-called prosperous 1920s and the Great Depression of the following decade. Drawing from a range of authors who wrote during the 1930s and early 1940s, Roberto examines how the driving force of American fascism comes, not from reactionary movements below, but from the top, namely, Big Business and the power of finance capital. More subtle than its earlier European counterparts, writes Roberto, fascist America’s racist, top-down quashing of individual liberties masqueraded as “real democracy,” “upholding the Constitution,” and the pressure to be “100 Percent American.” The Coming of the American Behemoth is intended as a primer, to forge much-needed discourse on the nature of fascism, and its particular forms within the United States. The book focuses on the role of the capital-labor relationship during the period between the two World Wars, when the United States became the epicenter of the world-capitalist system. Concentrating on specific processes, which he characterizes as terrorist and non-terrorist alike, Roberto argues that the interwar period was a fertile time for the incubation of a protean, more salable form of tyranny – a fascist behemoth in the making, whose emergence has been ignored or dismissed by mainstream historians. This book is a necessity for anyone who fears America tipping ever closer, in this era of Trump, to full-blown fascism.

The Pope And Mussolini

Autor: David I. Kertzer
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 0679645535
File Size: 24,23 MB
Format: PDF, Docs
Read: 9186
Download or Read Book
PULITZER PRIZE WINNER • NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE From National Book Award finalist David I. Kertzer comes the gripping story of Pope Pius XI’s secret relations with Italian dictator Benito Mussolini. This groundbreaking work, based on seven years of research in the Vatican and Fascist archives, including reports from Mussolini’s spies inside the highest levels of the Church, will forever change our understanding of the Vatican’s role in the rise of Fascism in Europe. The Pope and Mussolini tells the story of two men who came to power in 1922, and together changed the course of twentieth-century history. In most respects, they could not have been more different. One was scholarly and devout, the other thuggish and profane. Yet Pius XI and “Il Duce” had many things in common. They shared a distrust of democracy and a visceral hatred of Communism. Both were prone to sudden fits of temper and were fiercely protective of the prerogatives of their office. (“We have many interests to protect,” the Pope declared, soon after Mussolini seized control of the government in 1922.) Each relied on the other to consolidate his power and achieve his political goals. In a challenge to the conventional history of this period, in which a heroic Church does battle with the Fascist regime, Kertzer shows how Pius XI played a crucial role in making Mussolini’s dictatorship possible and keeping him in power. In exchange for Vatican support, Mussolini restored many of the privileges the Church had lost and gave in to the pope’s demands that the police enforce Catholic morality. Yet in the last years of his life—as the Italian dictator grew ever closer to Hitler—the pontiff’s faith in this treacherous bargain started to waver. With his health failing, he began to lash out at the Duce and threatened to denounce Mussolini’s anti-Semitic racial laws before it was too late. Horrified by the threat to the Church-Fascist alliance, the Vatican’s inner circle, including the future Pope Pius XII, struggled to restrain the headstrong pope from destroying a partnership that had served both the Church and the dictator for many years. The Pope and Mussolini brims with memorable portraits of the men who helped enable the reign of Fascism in Italy: Father Pietro Tacchi Venturi, Pius’s personal emissary to the dictator, a wily anti-Semite known as Mussolini’s Rasputin; Victor Emmanuel III, the king of Italy, an object of widespread derision who lacked the stature—literally and figuratively—to stand up to the domineering Duce; and Cardinal Secretary of State Eugenio Pacelli, whose political skills and ambition made him Mussolini’s most powerful ally inside the Vatican, and positioned him to succeed the pontiff as the controversial Pius XII, whose actions during World War II would be subject for debate for decades to come. With the recent opening of the Vatican archives covering Pius XI’s papacy, the full story of the Pope’s complex relationship with his Fascist partner can finally be told. Vivid, dramatic, with surprises at every turn, The Pope and Mussolini is history writ large and with the lightning hand of truth.

The Rise Of Fascism Second Edition

Autor: F. L. Carsten
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 9780520046436
File Size: 22,27 MB
Format: PDF, Mobi
Read: 3881
Download or Read Book
Studys the origins of fascism in Europe during the twenties and thirties, vividly depicting the mass rallies, emotional speeches and street clashes which attended its growth

Homage To Catalonia

Autor: George Orwell
Publisher: New Canadian Library
ISBN: 1551998769
File Size: 7,51 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
Read: 9415
Download or Read Book
A first-hand account of the horrors of the Spanish Civil War, straight from the pen of one of the twentieth century’s most renowned authors. In 1936, George Orwell enlisted with a left-wing Spanish militia organization, The Workers’ Part of Marxist Unification, out of a combined desire to fight against fascism and to record the events of the war. He fought against the fascist forces for several months, before infighting among the various left-wing groups turned him against former allies, and eventually forced him to flee the country. Homage to Catalonia is a vivid, intensely personal retelling of these events. Penguin Random House Canada is proud to bring you classic works of literature in e-book form, with the highest quality production values. Find more today and rediscover books you never knew you loved.

The Road To Unfreedom

Autor: Timothy Snyder
Publisher:
ISBN: 0525574476
File Size: 4,48 MB
Format: PDF
Read: 5910
Download or Read Book
Prologue -- Individualism or totalitarianism -- Succession or failure -- Integration or empire -- Novelty or eternity -- Truth or lies -- Equality or oligarchy -- Epilogue

Convergence On The Right

Autor: Beverly Gologorsky
Publisher: Haymarket Books
ISBN: 1608469085
File Size: 13,13 MB
Format: PDF, ePub
Read: 5745
Download or Read Book
As the Great Recession and the foreclosure crisis hit, four close friends who barely made it out of poverty in New York City’s South Bronx, suddenly find themselves caught up in the economic maelstrom. Lena, Zack, Dory, and Stu must reconcile their troubled past with an uncertain future in Beverly Gologorsky’s stunning new novel, a tapestry of working-class life in a world on the brink.

The Blue Line

Autor: Ingrid Betancourt
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 0698196538
File Size: 20,86 MB
Format: PDF, Docs
Read: 4390
Download or Read Book
From the extraordinary Colombian French politician and activist Ingrid Betancourt, a stunning debut novel about freedom and fate Set against the backdrop of Argentina’s Dirty War and infused with magical realism, The Blue Line is a breathtaking story of love and betrayal by one of the world’s most renowned writers and activists. Ingrid Betancourt, author of the New York Times bestselling memoir Even Silence Has an End, draws on history and personal experience in this deeply felt portrait of a woman coming of age as her country falls deeper and deeper into chaos. Buenos Aires, the 1970s. Julia inherits from her grandmother a gift, precious and burdensome. Sometimes visions appear before her eyes, mysterious and terrible apparitions from the future, seen from the perspective of others. From the age of five, Julia must intervene to prevent horrific events. In fact, as her grandmother tells her, it is her duty to do so—otherwise she will lose her gift. At fifteen, Julia falls in love with Theo, a handsome revolutionary four years her senior. Their lives are turned upside down when Juan Perón, the former president and military dictator, returns to Argentina. Confronted by the realities of military dictatorship, Julia and Theo become Montoneros sympathizers and radical idealists, equally fascinated by Jesus Christ and Che Guevara. Captured by death squadrons, they somehow manage to escape. . . . In this remarkable novel, Betancourt, an activist who spent more than six years held hostage by the FARC in the depths of Colombian jungle, returns to many of the themes of Even Silence Has an End. The Blue Line is a story centered on the consequences of oppression, collective subservience, and individual courage, and, most of all, the notion that belief in the future of humanity is an act of faith most beautiful and deserving. From the Hardcover edition.

Hitler

Autor: Volker Ullrich
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 1101872055
File Size: 22,42 MB
Format: PDF, Docs
Read: 4007
Download or Read Book
Winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Biography A New York Times bestseller, this major new biography of Hitler puts an emphasis on the man himself: his personality, his temperament, and his beliefs. Volker Ullrich's Hitler, the first in a two-volume biography, has changed the way scholars and laypeople alike understand the man who has become the personification of evil. Drawing on previously unseen papers and new scholarly research, Ullrich charts Hitler's life from his childhood through his experiences in the First World War and his subsequent rise as a far-right leader. Focusing on the personality behind the policies, Ullrich creates a vivid portrait of a man and his megalomania, political skill, and horrifying worldview. Hitler is a landmark biography with unsettling resonance in these times.

As I Walked Out One Midsummer Morning

Autor: Laurie Lee
Publisher: Penguin UK
ISBN: 0141397039
File Size: 29,45 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
Read: 5059
Download or Read Book
As I Walked Out One Midsummer Morning is the moving follow-up to Laurie Lee's acclaimed Cider with Rosie Abandoning the Cotswolds village that raised him, the young Laurie Lee walks to London. There he makes a living labouring and playing the violin. But, deciding to travel further a field and knowing only the Spanish phrase for 'Will you please give me a glass of water?', he heads for Spain. With just a blanket to sleep under and his trusty violin, he spends a year crossing Spain, from Vigo in the north to the southern coast. Only the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War puts an end to his extraordinary peregrinations . . . 'He writes like an angel and conveys the pride and vitality of the humblest Spanish life with unfailing sharpness, zest and humour' Sunday Times 'There's a formidable, instant charm in the writing that genuinely makes it difficult to put the book down' New Statesman 'A beautiful piece of writing' Observer