Always in the wrong place

I read Theodore Dalrymple’s new piece in the New Criterion just a few hours after I watched a video on North Korea shot clandestinely by some foolishly brave Americans, and I found it impossible not to think about the Dear Leader as I read it.

Reviewing Kombinat: Industrial Ruins of the Golden Era, a book of photographs documenting the decaying industrial infrastructure of Ceaucescu’s Romania, Dalrymple praises the work for raising several profound philosophical issues: to paraphrase, the permissibility of aestheticizing evil and disaster, Communist construction viewed as destruction of the past, and the extent to which human societies rebounding from horror can begin anew, “as if nothing had happened”.

Read the essay here

One thought on “Always in the wrong place


    The article would have been better if there had been more than 2 photographs to illustrate it. My father visited Romania after Ceucescu and communism fell. (However his name is spelt.) My Dad left Romania in 1950 as a refugee. The description of the awful pollution that the communist regime left there is spot on. In fact it was probably worse than TD describes when I think of my Dad description of dying cows giving polluted milk in the countryside. It is good that is often neglected subjects are tackled by TD like Romania, Congo, Tanzania.


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