Author(s): Isaiah Berlin
This remarkable collection contains Isaiah Berlin's appreciations of seventeen people of unusual distinction in the intellectual or political world, sometimes both. The names of many of them are familiar: Winston Churchill, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Chaim Weizmann, Albert Einstein, and others. With the exception of Roosevelt, he met them all and knew many of them well. For this expanded edition, four new portraits have been added, including those of Virginia Woolf and Edmund Wilson. This volume also contains a vivid and moving account of Berlin's meetings in Russia with Boris Pasternak and Anna Akhmatova in 1945 and 1956. Perhaps the most fascinating of these "personal impressions" is found in the epilogue, where Berlin describes the three strands in his own personality: Russian, English, and Jewish.