“He saw things in a way that others did not, so that a city I had lived in all my life seemed a different place, so that a woman became beautiful with the light on her face.”—Girl With a Pearl Earring, Tracy Chevalier (via fuckyeahliteraryquotes)
“…substance abusers that focus on cognitive realignment with self-affirming statements like, ‘Today I will accept myself for who I am, not who I wish I were.’”—Lauren Slater: The Trouble with Self-Esteem. English class.
“Breakthroughs in genetics present us with a promise and predicament. The promise is that we may soon be able to treat and prevent a host of debilitating diseases. The predicament is that our newfound genetic knowledge may also enable us to manipulate our own nature—to enhance our muscles, memories, and moods; to choose the sex, height, and other genetic traits of our children; to make ourselves ‘better than well.’ When science moves faster than moral understanding, as it does today, men and women struggle to articulate their unease.”—Michael J. Sandel: The Case Agaisnt Perfection. English class.
“To believe something with a perfect faith, to be incapable of apostasy, is a sign of fidelity to the group and loyalty to the cause. Unfortunately, the psychology of taboo is incompatible with the ideal of scholarship, which is that any idea is worth thinking about, if only to determine whether it is wrong.”—Steven Pinker: Sex Ed: The Science of Difference. English class.
“But classes are not like races and cultures, and treating them as if they were—different but equal—is one of our strategies for managing inequality rather than minimizing or eliminating it. White is not better than black, but rich is definitely better than poor.”—Walter Benn Michaels: The Trouble with Diversity. English class.
“As love has increasingly become the center of all emotional expression in the popular imagination, anxiety about obtaining it in sufficient quantities—and for sufficient duration—suffuses the population. Everyone knows that as the demands and expectations on couples escalated, so did divorce rates. And given the current divorce statistics (roughly 50 percent of all marriages end in divorce), all indications are that whomever you love today—your beacon of hope, the center of all your optimism—has a good chance of becoming your worst nightmare tomorrow.”—Laura Kipnis: Against Love. English class.
“I am not unmindful that some of you have come here out of great trials and tribulations. Some of you have come fresh from narrow jail cells. Some of you have come from areas where your quest for freedom left you battered by the storms of persecution and staggered by the winds of police brutality. You have been the veterans of creative suffering. Continue to work with the faith that unearned suffering is redemptive.”—Martin Luther King Jr.: I Have a Dream. English Class. My presentation topic :).
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”—Thomas Jefferson: The Declaration of Independence. English class. One of my favorite quotes.
“We can live any way we want. People take vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience—even of silence—by choice. The thing is to stalk your calling in a certain skilled and supple way, to locate the most tender and live spot and plug into that pulse. This is yielding, not fighting.”—Annie Dillard: Living Like Weasels. English class.
“The main obstacle to becoming a seducer is the foolish prejudice we have of seeing love and romance as some kind of sacred, magical realm where things just fall into place, if they are meant to. This might seem romantic and quaint, but it is really just a cover for our laziness. What will…
“'Hooking up' was a term known in the year 2000 to almost every American child over the age of nine, but to only a relatively small percentage of their parents, who, even if they heard it, thought it was being used in the old sense of 'meeting' someone. Among the children, hooking up was always a sexual experience, but the nature and extent of what they did could vary widely.”—Tom Wolfe: Hooking Up. English class. Still amazes me how words are being demeaned.