A Conversation with Christopher and Peter Hitchens

The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life invited brothers Christopher and Peter Hitchens to address the question of whether civilization needs God.

Christopher is the author of more than 10 books, including his recent memoir Hitch-22 and the best-selling manifesto God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything. He is a contributing editor to The Atlantic and a columnist for Vanity Fair. He has written prolifically for American and English periodicals, including The Nation, The London Review of Books, Granta, Harper’s, Los Angeles Times Book Review, New Left Review, Slate, The New York Review of Books, Newsweek International, The Times Literary Supplement and The Washington Post. In 2007, he received a National Magazine Award for his work for Vanity Fair.

Peter is the author of four books including The Abolition of Britain, a major seller in that country, and the recently published The Rage Against God: How Atheism Led Me to Faith, which he wrote to counter Christopher’s book, God Is Not Great. A British journalist, author and broadcaster, he currently writes for The Mail on Sunday, where he is a columnist and occasional foreign correspondent, and is a contributor to (among others) The Spectator, Prospect, Standpoint, The Guardian, The New Statesman and the American Conservative. Once an atheist, he attributes his return to faith largely to his experience of socialism in practice, which he witnessed during his many years reporting in Eastern Europe and his nearly three years as a resident correspondent in Moscow during the collapse of the Soviet Union. This year, he won the Orwell prize for journalism for foreign reporting.

View video highlights from the event.

Christopher Hitchens, Author, Contributing Editor to The Atlantic, Columnist for Vanity Fair
Peter Hitchens, Author, Columnist for The Mail on Sunday

Michael Cromartie, Vice President, Ethics and Public Policy Center

Navigate This Transcript:
Christopher Hitchens’ Opening Remarks
Peter Hitchens’ Opening Remarks
On the Decline in Civilized Society
On the Brothers’ Relationship
Christopher on Prayers of Support
On Nietzsche and Human Will
On the Separation of Church and State
Where Does Morality Come From?

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