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Pániker, Salvador


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El País - Spain | 11/04/2006

Salvador Pániker and the intellectuals

The Spanish writer and philosopher Salvador Pániker analyses the approach taken by the American author Paul Johnson, who reveals the hidden face of various seminal 20th-century thinkers in his book entitled 'Intellectuals'. "The main idea, according to Johnson, was that all of these 'great men', endowed with a specific talent, were deceitful and monstrously egocentric individuals whose private lives were at odds with their writings. They were people who loved their own ideas, but not their neighbour. ... Let us be clear here. It is certainly healthy and sensible to denounce intellectuals who create utopias, those capable of sacrificing real people in the name of their ideas. The atrocities committed in the 20th century have immunised us against this type of mystification. But we also need to preserve the authenticity of these genuine creators."

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