Life and career[ edit ] Early life and education[ edit ] Hitchens was born the elder of two boys in PortsmouthHampshire. He expressed affinity with the politically charged countercultural and protest movements of the s and s. He avoided the recreational drug use of the time, saying "in my cohort we were slightly anti-hedonistic In Hitchens went to work at the Times Higher Education Supplement where he served as a social science correspondent.
Oh, wearisome condition of humanity, Born under one law, to another bound; Vainly begot, and yet forbidden vanity, Created sick, commanded to be sound.
Well, well—what matters it? But we will keep the secret, and for their own happiness we will entice them with a heavenly and eternal reward.
They will be defiling the memory of a good, sincere, simple woman, of stable and decent faith, named Mrs. Watts's task, when I was a boy of about nine and attending a school on the edge of Dartmoor, in southwestern England, to instruct me in lessons about nature, and also about scripture.
She would take me and my fellows on walks, in an especially lovely part of my beautiful country of birth, and teach us to tell the different birds, trees, and plants from one another. The amazing variety to be found in a hedgerow; the wonder of a clutch of eggs found in an intricate nest; the way that if the nettles stung your legs we had to wear shorts there would be a soothing dock leaf planted near to hand: If you read John Clare's imperishable rural poems you will catch the music of what I mean to convey.
At later lessons we would be given a printed slip of paper entitled "Search the Scriptures," which was sent to the school by whatever national authority supervised the teaching of religion.
This, along with daily prayer services, was compulsory and enforced by the state. The slip would contain a single verse from the Old or New Testament, and the assignment was to look up the verse and then to tell the class or the teacher, orally or in writing, what the story and the moral was.
I used to love this exercise, and even to excel at it so that like Bertie Wooster I frequently passed "top" in scripture class. It was my first introduction to practical and textual criticism.
I would read all the chapters that led up to the verse, and all the ones that followed it, to be sure that I had got the "point" of the original clue. I can still do this, greatly to the annoyance of some of my enemies, and still have respect for those whose style is sometimes dismissed as "merely" Talmudic, or Koranic, or "fundamentalist.
However, there came a day when poor, dear Mrs.
Seeking ambitiously to fuse her two roles as nature instructor and Bible teacher, she said, "So you see, children, how powerful and generous God is. He has made all the trees and grass to be green, which is exactly the color that is most restful to our eyes.
Imagine if instead, the vegetation was all purple, or orange, how awful that would be. If Satan chose her to tempt me into error he was much more inventive than the subtle serpent in the Garden of Eden.
She never raised her voice or offered violence—which couldn't be said for all my teachers—and in general was one of those people, of the sort whose memorial is in Middlemarch, of whom it may be said that if "things are not so ill with you and me as they might have been," this is "half-owing to the number who lived faithfully a hidden life, and rest in unvisited tombs.
My little ankle strap sandals curled with embarrassment for her. At the age of nine I had not even a conception of the argument from design, or of Darwinian evolution as its rival, or of the relationship between photosynthesis and chlorophyll.
The secrets of the genome were as hidden from me as they were, at that time, to everyone else. I had not then visited scenes of nature where almost everything was hideously indifferent or hostile to human life, if not life itself.
I simply knew, almost as if I had privileged access to a higher authority, that my teacher had managed to get everything wrong in just two sentences.Sep 11, · Christopher Hitchens - God is Not Great Complete text of book God is Not Great -- Freely available to download.
Christopher Hitchens - God is Not Great writing books and essays, teaching my students to love English literature, attending agreeable conferences of literary types, taking part in the transient arguments that arise in.
God Is Not Great Essays - In his book God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything, Christopher Hitchens dissects and criticizes the various claims of religions and the tragic events that have been caused by various religions. During the same year as God Is Not Great, Hitchens also compiled a large amount of essays and writings centered around atheism and made it into a book titled The Portable Atheist, which included original work and essays by Ian McEwan and Salman Rushdie.
Hitchens also wrote introductions to each of the essays he presented. May 09, · Hitchens speaking at a book store about his brilliant new treatise, God is Not Great. God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything by Christopher Hitchens A copy that has been read, but remains in clean condition.
All pages are intact, and the cover is intact. by Christopher Hitchens pp, Atlantic Books, £ First Dennett, then Dawkins and now Hitchens: and of these three recent diatribes against religion, Christopher Hitchens's is the fiercest.