Theodore Dalrymple  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Anthony (A.M.) Daniels (born 1949) is a British writer and retired physician (prison doctor and psychiatrist), who generally uses the pen name Theodore Dalrymple. He has also used three other pen names. Before his retirement in 2005 he worked as a doctor and psychiatrist in a hospital and nearby prison in a slum area in Birmingham. His philosophical position is "compassionate conservative". He is a critic of liberal thinking and utopian thinking in general.

Daniels is a contributing editor to City Journal, published by the Manhattan Institute, where he is the Dietrich Weismann Fellow. In addition to City Journal, his work frequently appears in The British Medical Journal, The Times, The Observer, The Daily Telegraph, The Spectator, The Salisbury Review, and Axess magasin. He is the author of a number of books, including Life at the Bottom: The Worldview That Makes the Underclass, Our Culture, What's Left of It, and Spoilt Rotten: The Toxic Cult of Sentimentality.

In his writing, Daniels frequently argues that the liberal and progressive views prevalent within Western intellectual circles minimise the responsibility of individuals for their own actions and undermine traditional mores, contributing to the formation within rich countries of an underclass afflicted by endemic violence, criminality, sexually transmitted diseases, welfare dependency, and drug abuse. Much of Dalrymple's writing is based on his experience of working with criminals and the mentally ill.

Although he is occasionally accused of being a pessimist and a misanthrope, his defenders praise his persistently conservative philosophy, which they describe as being anti-ideological, sceptical, rational and empiricist. In 2010, Daniel Hannan wrote that Dalrymple's work "takes pessimism about human nature to a new level. Yet its tone is never patronising, shrill or hectoring. Once you get past the initial shock of reading about battered wives, petty crooks and junkies from a non-Left perspective, you find humanity and pathos".

In 2011, Dalrymple received the 2011 Freedom Prize from the Flemish think-tank Libera!.



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