The Pursuit of Intimacy, or Rationalism in Love

Bob Grant’s highly distinctive essay on Oakeshott’s private life.

In what follows I shall refer to Michael Oakeshott by his first name, as I also shall to those connected with him. This is partly to avoid the confusion of shared surnames, though I did actually come myself to address him by his first name. My main topic will be his love life, which is not the same as his sex life, though the two are obviously connected. And perhaps both are, more distantly, with his work. As we shall see, Michael in several places says that love was the main business of his life. If we are to take him literally, therefore, his work appears as more of a sideline or an antidote, and even he admits from time to time that he is using it to deaden his sorrows or drive away his demons.