Martin Amis Oxford-educated Amis, one of the leading British novelists of his generation and the son of novelist Kingsley
We now bizarrely, in our age, follow the narratives of famous strangers, feeling as though we know them in some weird way by following their trial and errors. We follow them to gain some understanding of who and where we ourselves are. Modern man in search of a soul, said Jung.
Debates about globalisation examine impacts on all concerned - whether importers of labour, food and goods or those countries losing key workers, giving up their food or being turned into polluted assembly lines. Debates about the EU and migration which lack that level of empathy - and concentrate purely on what Britain is supposedly losing - simply miss the point.
Martin Amis once famously declared that he would have to have "a serious brain injury" to write for children and that "he
I send Simon Price a message to verify if he identifies as straight; he does, but adds that he is "culturally queer." That'll do. He says I'm "Wide of the mark" to call Hilary Mantel's remarks bitchy. Why? "Because it demeans the valid points she made and implies that her remarks were made with personal malice, when her beef wasn't personal."
The struggle against islamophobia is the struggle for a nuanced and contextualised appraisal of events involving Muslims, a refusal to accept that everything can be explained away through a facile reference to 'Islam' and a defence of a European minority group. There is nothing Orwellian about that.
As literary relationships go, it's an unusual one. But since he first described her as "two bags of silicone" in 2007, author
If a writer is prepared to work without getting paid, how good can they be? If a plumber offers to work for free, that could be a bad sign. But writing isn't like other professions. A struggling writer is a romantic figure; a struggling brain surgeon, less so.
Martin Amis provided the evening's most entertaining moments. Going through old photographs with Stephen Fry, he was fantastically funny, noting a baguette stowed away in Hitchens' top pocket while in Paris, and remarking upon his abundant sprouting chest-hair in another that showed him smoking a cigarette while holding a brace of pheasants on the Rothschild estate.