The trouble with me is, Treece thought, that I'm a liberal humanist who believes in original sin. I think of man as a noble creature who has only to extend himself to the full range of his powers to be civilized and good; yet his performance by and large has been intrinsically evil and could be more so as the extension continues.
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One can always satisfy oneself, I suppose; it's other people one can't satisfy. One thinks one's way of life is sound and then comes an external vision to say: you are a fake, you are nothing, you're animal and must die, and no one will know you were ever here. It's an intimation of the whole absurdity of what you are and do. It's the worst kind of despair.
..it lay in the true function of the university to promote that interplay of view, that discussion and dispute, that cumulative narrowing down of possibilities that led to the formation of accurate opinion. The students could be, as it were (he said), the rubbing post for the thought of his teacher.
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With my sort of book there's no resolution, because there's no solution. The problems aren't answered in the end because there is no answer. They're problems that are handed on to the reader, not solved for him so that he can do away thinking he lives in a beautiful world. It's not a beautiful world.
One can't always satisfy oneself, I suppose; it's other people one can't satisfy. One thinks one's way of life is sound and then comes an external vision to say: you are a fake, you are nothing, you're animal and must die, and no one will know you were ever there. It's an intimation of the whole absurdity of what you are and do. It's the worst kind of despair.
The whole point of marriage is to stop you getting anywhere near real life. You think it's a great struggle with the mystery of being. It's more like being smothered in warm cocoa. There's sex, but it's not what you think. Marvellous, for the first fortnight. Then every Wednesday. If there isn't a good late-night concert on the Third. Meanwhile you become a biological functionary. An agent of the great female womb, spawning away, dumping its goods in your lap for succour. Daddy, daddy, we're here, and we're expensive.
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To put it another way: a conference is an elite meeting on equal terms; a congress is a group of elites meeting on opposite terms; a convention is a mob meeting on equal terms; a course is an elite instructing a mob; and a colloquium is a group capable of considering all these phenomena.