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Christopher Hitchens: The Fifth Annual Arthur Miller Freedom to Write Lecture

Christopher Hitchens speaks on Crucibles: Past and Present followed by a conversation with PEN World Voices Festival Chair, Salman Rushdie. Hitchens is a contributing editor to Vanity Fair and a visiting professor of liberal studies at the New School. He is the author of numerous books, including works on Thomas Jefferson, Thomas Paine, George Orwell, Mother Teresa, Bill and Hillary Clinton, Henry Kissinger, and his No. 1 New York Times and National Book Award nominee , God Is Not Great. His next book,Hitch-22: A Memoir, will be released this June.
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Frank Zappa (December 21, 1940 December 4, 1993) was an American composer, electric guitarist, record producer, and film director. In a career spanning more than 30 years, Zappa wrote rock, jazz, electronic, orchestral, and musique concrète works. He also directed feature-length films and music videos, and designed album covers. Zappa produced almost all of the more than 60 albums he released with the band Mothers of Invention and as a solo artist. In his teens, he acquired a taste for percussion-based avant-garde composers such as Edgard Varèse and 1950s rhythm and blues music. He began writing classical music in high school, while at the same time playing drums in rhythm and blues bands—he later switched to electric guitar. He was a self-taught composer and performer, and his diverse musical influences led him to create music that was often impossible to categorize. His 1966 debut album with the Mothers of Invention, Freak Out!, combined songs in conventional rock and roll format with collective improvisations and studio-generated sound collages. His later albums shared this eclectic and experimental approach, irrespective of whether the fundamental format was one of rock, jazz or classical. He wrote the lyrics to all his songs, which—often humorously—reflected his iconoclastic view of established social and political processes, structures and movements. He was a strident critic of mainstream education and organized religion, and a forthright and passionate advocate for

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52 comments on “Christopher Hitchens: The Fifth Annual Arthur Miller Freedom to Write Lecture

  • I have to admit the only Drama contenders I’ve ever seen anything much of are Game Of Thrones, Dexter, House and unfortunately, Law & Order: SVU. Although Justified, Mad Men, and Friday Night Lights are on my “To Watch,” list.

  • I concur. Writing specially when you get in the zone is not that hard. It is just starting that’s hard. Like finding the right moment to write, getting the right feel, waiting for an inspiration, or making up excuses in your head why right now is not the best moment yet. There was this one time that I did not feel like writing at all but I sat down and started writing anyway, and within 30 minutes I was in the zone already.

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