He spent his entire career in the academy and contributed to general-interest publications only infrequently. He wrote in an often opaque and always toplofty style and with a specialized vocabulary derived from the social sciences, his sentences gravid with learning and self-importance. He once claimed that only seventeen people in the world could really read him, and he wrote at times as if he were trying to whittle that number down. An intellectual outlier of the first order and an unapologetic elitist and cultural reactionary, he had nothing but contempt for identity politics, vanguard art and literature, and the technocrats of the multiversity.
-- Gerald Howard on Philip Rieff.