However, Rowson is on to something when he notes that in a world characterised by mutual incomprehension on the part of ideological opponents, more people could do with the essential chess skill of trying to see the board from the other point of view: 'One quality of mind I am sure chess cultivates is a capacity to see both (or more) sides of an argument.'
But — and this distinction Rowson slightly skates over — political views are rooted in emotional and cultural attitudes, whereas disagreements over the chessboard are not just entirely distinct from our political prejudices: they are akin to scientific debate, in which the matter can be settled definitively by objective analysis.
This is serious stuff, but Rowson, being an aspirant 'new man' with a working wife, comes up with a novel chess/life analogy that made me laugh. Or, as he puts it: 'My chess experience proved surprisingly useful in my new role as nappy-changer-in-chief.'
Calamity: The Many Lives of Calamity Jane
"as Karen Jones sets out dismayingly early in her book, the only things that the real-life ‘Calamity Jane’ can with confidence be said to have in common with her legend is that she wore trousers, swore like a navvy and was pissed all the time..."
— The Spectator