Raymond Aron has won the respect and admiration of leading figures from all spheres of twentieth-century life and from all points of the political spectrum. An independent thinker who was often called the lone voice of reason in the heat of political conflicts, Aron became well known for his bold, penetrating ideas. His dispassionate, probing analyses of international affairs, ethnic conflicts, social and economic problems, and contemporary history have become increasingly influential in the U.S. and foreign arenas of political discourse and public policy. Whether working with the Free French in London during World War II, voicing early support for the reconstruction of a devastated post-war Germany, or offering new insights on peace and war in a nuclear age, Aron consistently brightened areas of inquiry by his capacity for cogent and forthright reflection.In the foreground of many of the most important political events of the twentieth century, he developed relationships with others similarly engaged figures such as Charles de Gaulle, Jean-Paul Sartre, and Henry Kissinger, all of whom appear in his prize-winning Memoirs.
Aron stimulated debate and elicited strong attachments in his roles as journalist, author, adviser, and professor in philosophy, political science, and sociology in Europe and the United States, where he contributed to periodicals such as the "New York Times Magazine", Commentary, and Foreign Affairs. Since his death in 1983, Aron's brilliant works of social and political philosophy have found an increasingly large following among younger readers whose appreciation can only deepen with this behind-the-scenes glimpse of the man and his thoughts.