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Letter: Booker Prize haven

Sir: As it is a common American view that all of Britain is a "haven for eccentrics", some rejoinder to Mr Usborne's citation of Time magazine's 1964 characterization of the Committee on Social Thought seems appropriate ("Mr Coetzee is run to earth through cyberspace", 27 October).

My colleagues and I are blissfully happy to be sheltered in this haven, however much off the beaten path, if it allows us to keep the company of such noted eccentrics as Hannah Arendt, Harold Rosenberg, Leszek Kolakowski, Paul Ricouer, Saul Bellow, Francois Furet and our current colleagues and students, most especially John Coetzee.


Chair, Committee on Social Thought

University of Chicago