Paul Johnson's book,
Intellectuals, provides many
examples of the disastrous personal lives of intellectuals like
Jean Jaques Rousseau, Karl Marx, Jean Paul Sartre and Simone de
Beauvoir. Why do so many intellectuals—who famously argue for a
better society— behave so badly in their personal relationships?
Johnson suggests a few explanations, such as their need for
attention and desire to post-rationalise bad decisions.
There is also something about the way that these intellectuals
think that leads them to neglect the people close to them. They
share a faulty view of society, from which it makes sense for them
to care so little about their personal relationships. In this
episode, I argue that a correct understanding of society leads to
investing in your personal relationships, because your society is