The important thing about travel in foreign lands is that it breaks the speech habits and makes you blab less, and breaks the habitual space-feeling because of different village plans and different landscapes. It is less important that there are different mores, for you counteract these with your own reaction-formations.
Thwarted, or starved, in the important objects proper to young capacities, the boys and young men naturally find or invent deviant objects for themselves. ... Their choices and inventions are rarely charming, usually stupid, and often disastrous; we cannot expect average kids to deviate with genius. But on the other hand, the young men who conform to the dominant society become for the most part apathetic, disappointed, cynical and wasted.
thwarted quotesstarved quotesimportant quotesobjects quotesproper quotesyoung quotescapacities quotesboys quotesmen quotesnaturally quotesfind quotesinvent quotesdeviant quoteschoices quotesinventions quotesrarely quotescharming quotesstupid quotesdisastrous quotesexpect quotesaverage quoteskids quotesdeviate quotesgenius quoteshand quotesconform quotesdominant quotessociety quotespart quotesapathetic quotesdisappointed quotescynical quoteswasted quotes
The ideal of having a real job that you risk your soul in and make good or be damned, belongs to the heroic age of capitalist enterprise, imbued with self-righteous beliefs about hard work, thrift, and public morals. Such an ideal might still have been mentioned in public fifty years ago; in our era of risk-insured semimonopolies and advertised vices it would be met with a ghastly stillness.
ideal quotesreal quotesjob quotesrisk quotessoul quotesmake quotesgood quotesdamned quotesbelongs quotesheroic quotesage quotescapitalist quotesenterprise quotesimbued quotesselfrighteous quotesbeliefs quoteshard quoteswork quotesthrift quotespublic quotesmorals quotesmentioned quotesfifty quotesyears quotesago quotesera quotesriskinsured quotessemimonopolies quotesadvertised quotesvices quotesmet quotesghastly quotesstillness quotes
To consider powerful souls as if they were a useful public resource is quite foreign to our customs. In a small sense it is undemocratic, for it assumes that some people really know better in a way that must seem arbitrary to most. In a large sense it is certainly democratic, in that it makes the great man serve as a man.
Naturally, grown-up citizens are concerned about the beatniks and delinquents. ... The question is why the grownups do not, more soberly, draw the same conclusions as the youth. Or, since no doubt many people are quite clear about the connection that the structure of society that has becoming increasingly dominant in our country is disastrous to the growth of excellence and manliness, why don't more people speak up and say so?
naturally quotesgrownup quotescitizens quotesconcerned quotesbeatniks quotesdelinquents quotesquestion quotesgrownups quotessoberly quotesdraw quotesconclusions quotesyouth quotesdoubt quotespeople quotesclear quotesconnection quotesstructure quotessociety quotesincreasingly quotesdominant quotescountry quotesdisastrous quotesgrowth quotesexcellence quotesmanliness quotesspeak quotes
It then becomes necessary to stop short and make a choice: Either/Or. Either one drifts with their absurd system of ideas, believing that this is the human community. Or one dissents totally from their system of ideas and stands as a lonely human being. (But luckily one notices that the others are in the same crisis and making the same choices.)
The "brightness" of the 15 percent might or might not indicate a profound feeling for the causes of things; it is largely verbal and symbol-manipulating, and is almost certainly partly an obsessional device not to know and touch risky matter, just as Freud long ago pointed out that the nagging questions of small children are a substitute for asking the forbidden questions.
brightness quotes15 quotespercent quotesprofound quotesfeeling quotesthings quoteslargely quotesverbal quotessymbolmanipulating quotespartly quotesobsessional quotesdevice quotestouch quotesrisky quotesmatter quotesfreud quoteslong quotesago quotespointed quotesnagging quotesquestions quotessmall quoteschildren quotessubstitute quotesforbidden quotesquestions quotes
Wrong' training can be a very innocent thing. Consider a father who allows his child to read good books. That child may soon cease to watch television or go to the movies, nor will he eventually read Book-of-the-Month Club selections, because they are ludicrous and dull. As a young man, then, he will effectually be excluded from all of Madison Avenue and Hollywood and most of publishing, because what moves him or what he creates is quite irrelevant to what is going on: it is too fine. His father has brought him up as a dodo.
wrong quotestraining quotesinnocent quotesthing quotesfather quoteschild quotesread quotesgood quotesbooks quotescease quoteswatch quotestelevision quotesmovies quoteseventually quotesbookofthemonth quotesclub quotesselections quotesludicrous quotesdull quotesyoung quotesman quoteseffectually quotesexcluded quotesmadison quotesavenue quoteshollywood quotespublishing quotesmoves quotescreates quotesirrelevant quotesfine quotesbrought quotesdodo quotes
Finding a new ethics or esthetics, as Dr. Douglass asks, will not put us in a state of grace. Existence is not given meaning by importing it into a revelation from the outside. The meaning is -there, in more closely contacting the actual situation, the only situation that there is, whatever it is. As our situation is, closely contacting it would surely result in plenty of trouble and perhaps in terrible social conflicts, terrible opportunities and duties, during which we might learn something and at the end of which we might know something, even a new ethics; for it is in such conflicts that new ethics are discovered. But it is just these conflicts that we do not observe happening. Everybody talks nice. At most there is some unruliness and dumb protest, and some withdrawal. So urging the juveniles to go to church is not serious, for how will the church give them faith? What opportunity will it open?
finding quotesethics quotesesthetics quotesdr quotesdouglass quotesasks quotesput quotesstate quotesgrace quotesexistence quotesmeaning quotesimporting quotesrevelation quotesclosely quotescontacting quotesactual quotessituation quotessituation quotessurely quotesresult quotesplenty quotestrouble quotesterrible quotessocial quotesconflicts quotesopportunities quotesduties quoteslearn quotesend quotesethics quotesconflicts quotesdiscovered quotesobserve quoteshappening quotestalks quotesnice quotesunruliness quotesdumb quotesprotest quoteswithdrawal quotesurging quotesjuveniles quoteschurch quotesgive quotesfaith quotesopportunity quotesopen quotes
Not speaking and speaking are both human ways of being in the world, and there are kinds and grades of each. There is the dumb silence of slumber or apathy; the sober silence that goes with a solemn animal face; the fertile silence of awareness, pasturing the soul, whence emerge new thoughts; the alive silence of alert perception, ready to say, 'This... this... '; the musical silence that accompanies absorbed activity; the silence of listening to another speak, catching the drift and helping him be clear; the noisy silence of resentment and self-recrimination, loud and subvocal speech but sullen to say it; baffled silence; the silence of peaceful accord with other persons or communion with the cosmos.
speaking quoteshuman quotesways quotesworld quoteskinds quotesgrades quotesdumb quotessilence quotesslumber quotesapathy quotessober quotessolemn quotesanimal quotesface quotesfertile quotesawareness quotespasturing quotessoul quotesemerge quotesthoughts quotesalive quotesalert quotesperception quotesready quotesthis quotes quotesmusical quotesaccompanies quotesabsorbed quotesactivity quoteslistening quotesspeak quotescatching quotesdrift quoteshelping quotesclear quotesnoisy quotesresentment quotesselfrecrimination quotesloud quotessubvocal quotesspeech quotessullen quotesbaffled quotessilence quotespeaceful quotesaccord quotespersons quotescommunion quotescosmos quotes
These young-marrying, contemporaries or juniors of the Beat Generation, have often expressed themselves as follows: "My highest aim in life is to achieve a normal healthy marriage and raise healthy [non-neurotic] children." On the face of it, this remark is preposterous. What was always taken as a usual and advantageous life-condition for work in the world and the service of God, is now regarded as an heroic goal to be striven for. Yet we see that it is a hard goal to achieve against the modern obstacles. Also it is a real goal, with objective problems that a man can work at personally, and take responsibility for, and make decisions about-unlike the interpersonal relations of the corporation, or the routine of the factory job for which the worker couldn't care less. But now, suppose the young man is achieving this goal: he has the wife, the small kids, the suburban home, and the labor-saving domestic devices. How is it that it is the same man who uniformly asserts that he is in a Rat Race? Either the goal does not justify itself, or indeed he is not really achieving it. Perhaps the truth is, if marriage and children are the goal, a man cannot really achieve it. It is not easy to conceive of a strong husband and father who does not justified in his work and independent in the world. Correspondingly, his wife feels justified in the small children, but does she have a man, do the children have a father, if he is running a Rat Race? Into what world do the small children grow up in such a home?
youngmarrying quotescontemporaries quotesjuniors quotesbeat quotesgeneration quotesexpressed quoteshighest quotesaim quoteslife quotesachieve quotesnormal quoteshealthy quotesmarriage quotesraise quotesnonneurotic quoteschildren quotesface quotesremark quotespreposterous quotesusual quotesadvantageous quoteslifecondition quoteswork quotesworld quotesservice quotesgod quotesregarded quotesheroic quotesgoal quotesstriven quoteshard quotesmodern quotesobstacles quotesreal quotesgoal quotesobjective quotesproblems quotesman quotespersonally quotesresponsibility quotesmake quotesdecisions quotesaboutunlike quotesinterpersonal quotesrelations quotescorporation quotesroutine quotesfactory quotesjob quotesworker quotescare quotessuppose quotesyoung quotesachieving quotesgoal quoteswife quotessmall quoteskids quotessuburban quoteshome quoteslaborsaving quotesdomestic quotesdevices quotesuniformly quotesasserts quotesrat quotesrace quotesjustify quotestruth quoteschildren quoteseasy quotesconceive quotesstrong quoteshusband quotesfather quotesjustified quotesindependent quotesworld quotescorrespondingly quoteswife quotesfeels quoteschildren quotesman quotesfather quotesrunning quotesgrow quoteshome quotes
I often ask, "What do you want to work at? If you have the chance. When you get out of school, college, the service, etc." Some answer right off and tell their definite plans and projects, highly approved by Papa. I'm pleased for them but it's a bit boring, because they are such squares. Quite a few will, with prompting, come out with astounding stereotyped, conceited fantasies, such as becoming a movie actor when they are "discovered" "like Marlon Brando, but in my own way." Very rarely somebody will, maybe defiantly and defensively, maybe diffidently but proudly, make you know that he knows very well what he is going to do; it is something great; and he is indeed already doing it, which is the real test. The usual answer, perhaps the normal answer, is "I don't know, " meaning, "I'm looking; I haven't found the right thing; it's discouraging but not hopeless." But the terrible answer is, "Nothing." The young man doesn't want to do anything. I remember talking to half a dozen young fellows at Van Wagner's Beach outside of Hamilton, Ontario; and all of them had this one thing to say: "Nothing." They didn't believe that what to work at was the kind of thing one wanted. They rather expected that two or three of them would work for the electric company in town, but they couldn't care less, I turned away from the conversation abruptly because of the uncontrollable burning tears in my eyes and constriction in my chest. Not feeling sorry for them, but tears of frank dismay for the waste of our humanity (they were nice kids). And it is out of that incident that many years later I am writing this book.
work quoteschance quotesschool quotescollege quotesservice quotesanswer quotesdefinite quotesplans quotesprojects quoteshighly quotesapproved quotespapa quotespleased quotesbit quotesboring quotessquares quotesprompting quotesastounding quotesstereotyped quotesconceited quotesfantasies quotesmovie quotesactor quotesdiscovered quotesmarlon quotesbrando quotesrarely quotesdefiantly quotesdefensively quotesdiffidently quotesproudly quotesmake quotesgreat quotesreal quotestest quotesusual quotesanswer quotesnormal quotesmeaning quotesfound quotesthing quotesdiscouraging quoteshopeless quotesterrible quotesyoung quotesman quotesremember quotestalking quoteshalf quotesdozen quotesfellows quotesvan quoteswagners quotesbeach quoteshamilton quotesontario quotesthing quoteskind quoteswanted quotesexpected quoteselectric quotescompany quotestown quotescare quotesturned quotesconversation quotesabruptly quotesuncontrollable quotesburning quotestears quoteseyes quotesconstriction quoteschest quotesfeeling quotesfrank quotesdismay quoteswaste quoteshumanity quotesnice quoteskids quotesincident quotesyears quoteswriting quotesbook quotes
A well-known magazine asks a man how they should refer to him, as Psychologist X, as Author X? He suggests man of letters, for that is what he is, in the eighteenth-century meaning. But they can't buy that because the word doesn't exist in Time-style; he cannot be that, and presumably the old function of letters cannot exist.
In our truly remarkable an unexampled civil peace, where there are rarely fist fights; where no one is born, is gravely ill, or dies; where meat is eaten but no one sees an animal slaughtered; where scores of millions of cars, trains, elevators, and airplanes go their scheduled way and there is rarely a crash; where an immense production proceeds in orderly efficiency and the shelves are duly clears and nevertheless none of this come to joy or tragic grief or any other final good it is not surprising if there are explosions.
remarkable quotesunexampled quotescivil quotespeace quotesrarely quotesfist quotesfights quotesborn quotesgravely quotesill quotesdies quotesmeat quoteseaten quotessees quotesanimal quotesslaughtered quotesscores quotesmillions quotescars quotestrains quoteselevators quotesairplanes quotesscheduled quotescrash quotesimmense quotesproduction quotesproceeds quotesorderly quotesefficiency quotesshelves quotesduly quotesclears quotesjoy quotestragic quotesgrief quotesfinal quotesgood quotessurprising quotesexplosions quotes
Freud pointed out, in his Problem of Lay Analysis , that it is extremely unlikely that a young man who would throw the best years of his life into the cloistered drudgery of getting an M.D. degree, could possibly make a good psychoanalyst; so he preferred to look for young analysts among the writers, the lawyers, the mothers of families, those who had chosen human contact. But in their economic wisdom, the Psychoanalytic Institute of Vienna (and New York) overruled him.
freud quotespointed quotesproblem quoteslay quotesanalysis quotesextremely quotesyoung quotesman quotesthrow quotesyears quoteslife quotescloistered quotesdrudgery quotesmd quotesdegree quotespossibly quotesmake quotesgood quotespsychoanalyst quotespreferred quotesanalysts quoteswriters quoteslawyers quotesmothers quotesfamilies quoteschosen quoteshuman quotescontact quoteseconomic quoteswisdom quotespsychoanalytic quotesinstitute quotesvienna quotesyork quotesoverruled quotes
To want a job that exercises a man's capacities in an enterprise useful to society, is utopian anarcho-syndicalism; it is labor invading the domain of management. No labor leader has entertained such a thought in our generation. Management has the "sole prerogative" to determine the products.
job quotesexercises quotesmans quotescapacities quotesenterprise quotessociety quotesutopian quotesanarchosyndicalism quoteslabor quotesinvading quotesdomain quotesmanagement quotesleader quotesentertained quotesthought quotesgeneration quotesmanagement quotessole quotesprerogative quotesdetermine quotesproducts quotes
We define boredom as the pain a person feels when he's doing nothing or something irrelevant, instead of something he wants to do but won't, can't, or doesn't dare. Boredom is acute when he knows the other thing and inhibits his action, e.g., out of politeness, embarrassment, fear of punishment or shame. Boredom is chronic if he has repressed the thought of it and no longer is aware of it. A large part of stupidity is just the chronic boredom, for a person can't learn, or be intelligent about, what he's not interested in, when his repressed thoughts are elsewhere.
define quotesboredom quotespain quotesperson quotesfeels quotesirrelevant quotesdare quotesboredom quotesacute quotesthing quotesinhibits quotesaction quotespoliteness quotesembarrassment quotesfear quotespunishment quotesshame quoteschronic quotesrepressed quotesthought quoteslonger quotesaware quoteslarge quotespart quotesstupidity quotesboredom quoteslearn quotesintelligent quotesinterested quotesthoughts quotes
To translate, one must have a style of his own, for the translation will have no rhythm or nuance, which come from the process of artistically thinking through and molding the sentences; they cannot be reconstituted by piecemeal imitation. The problem of translation is to retreat to a simpler tenor of one's own style and creatively adjust this to one's author.
translate quotesstyle quotestranslation quotesrhythm quotesnuance quotesprocess quotesartistically quotesthinking quotesmolding quotessentences quotesreconstituted quotespiecemeal quotesimitation quotesproblem quotesretreat quotessimpler quotestenor quotesones quotescreatively quotesadjust quotesauthor quotes
Anarchism is grounded in a rather definite social-psychological hypothesis: that forceful, graceful and intelligent behaviour occurs only when there is an uncoerced and direct response to the physical and social environment; that in most human affairs, more harm than good results from compulsion, top-down direction, bureaucratic planning, pre-ordained curricula, jails, conscription, states.
anarchism quotesgrounded quotesdefinite quotessocialpsychological quoteshypothesis quotesforceful quotesgraceful quotesintelligent quotesbehaviour quotesoccurs quotesuncoerced quotesdirect quotesresponse quotesphysical quotessocial quotesenvironment quoteshuman quotesaffairs quotesharm quotesgood quotesresults quotescompulsion quotestopdown quotesdirection quotesbureaucratic quotesplanning quotespreordained quotescurricula quotesjails quotesconscription quotesstates quotes
An awkward consequence of heightening experience when one is inexperienced, of self-transcendence when one has not much world to lose, is that afterward one cannot be sure that one was somewhere or had newly experienced anything. If you aren't much in the world, how do you know you are "out of this world"?