Not so Puritanical, actually

George Eaton’s dubious account, in the New Statesman, of his interview with Roger Scruton begins with this paragraph:

It was in Paris in May 1968, as French workers and students revolted, that Roger Scruton became a conservative. “I was woken up then, I wasn’t really political until that moment,” the author and philosopher recalled when we met recently at his flat in Albany, the rarefied apartment complex opposite Fortnum & Mason in Piccadilly, London. “I thought, here is the most beautiful city in the world, with its wonderful culture, all the things that I’ve just learned to appreciate, and these wretched, spoiled brats are trying to pull it all down… I had an old-fashioned English Puritanical revolt against it.”

This sounds High Church to me rather than Puritanical. True Precisionists must now be cheering the destruction of Notre-Dame, although in this nihilistic cantata, one mostly hears the voices of non- and anti-Christian Puritans.

By the way, the Albany is about as close to the Royal Academy of Arts as it is to Fortnum & Mason – the reporter’s bias shows from the start. On the other hand, it’s good to know that at least one intellectual can afford such exquisite proximity.

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