Eva Hoffman

GEORGE SOROS IS A MONUMENTAL FIGURE whose outsize dimensions can be measured in many ways: in the sheer size of his fortune, in the international impact of his human rights and pro-democracy work, and in the success of the various causes he has supported.

All this we more or less know. But what do we know of George Soros as a person? Is it possible to envisage him as a child, or an adolescent boy? I doubt that many people’s imagination would extend that far. Like many world-famous figures, Soros, to those who don’t know him personally, is a kind of abstraction, or a brand, rather than a living, breathing, emotionally complicated (as which one of us is not?) human being.

And yet, of course, George Soros was once a child; ...

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