In conversation with Christopher Hitchens
His book Letters to a Young Contrarian explores the entire range of 'contrary positions'
During his final show as host of The Sunday Edition in June, Michael Enright said of all the thousands of people he's interviewed, his favourite guest was probably Christopher Hitchens.
Hitchens was a renowned and sometimes reviled journalist, essayist, polemicist, committed atheist and contrarian. He hated humbug, hypocrisy and intellectual cowardice, and loved few things more than George Orwell and a good argument.
He had the pedigree of an intellectual elite with an Oxford education and for much of his life was a staunch Marxist, but drew the ire of the left with his support for the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003.
He eviscerated dictators, fundamentalists, fanatics of all stripes, racists and charlatans. Mother Theresa, Henry Kissinger, Bill Clinton and Pope John Paul II all felt the pointy end of his prose and rhetoric.
Hitchens died in December, 2011, after a year-long battle with esophageal cancer, at the age of 62.
In November 2001 Enright interviewed Hitchens in the early days of the war against the Taliban in Afghanistan, and shortly after Hitchens published his book, Letters to a Young Contrarian.
Click 'listen' above to hear the full conversation.