His plenary address was full of the spiky political intellect we were familiar with from his writing. And so the conference organisers, of which I was one, were glad he’d made the journey from New York. I’d arranged to have lunch with him after his talk but a couple of the research mandarins intercepted him and took him off to eat somewhere fancy on their corporate cards.
Later in the afternoon he sought me out and told what had happened. They’d offered him a lucrative professorship and he was gobsmacked, but also flattered and interested, despite the fact that this would mean migrating to Australia with his partner and children. ‘But they gave me the hard sell. Now I want to hear from someone who’s not a manager. So tell me, what’s it’s like to work here?’