Elias Canetti: The Last Cosmopolitan: “He was the kind of intellectual who can both evince the particularities of his milieu and transcend them—a rare enough quality in the intellectuals of his time, and perhaps even rarer today. Canetti was also a scholar without being an academic. He was neither a sociologist nor an anthropologist, neither a full-time novelist nor a conventional poet. Rather, he was many writers at once.”

Canetti was the kind of writer — and man — that we need now more than ever: polyglot, travelled, well-read, belonging to no nation, instinctively on the side of the oppressed. In other words: a rootless cosmopolitan and an ally in our darkening times.

© Henning Bertram 2024