Thursday, May 10, 2007

Perspectives on Ideas. May 10, 2007. Father, Fear, Feeling, Feminism, Fences, Fiction.

Note: A bold-face statement at the conclusion of a quote is my attempt to express a wordy or convoluted quote in plain English.

Father 229 “Good-by, my father—good-by, all my fathers.” Fitzgerald, Tender Is the Night.

Father 487 …the father is the oldest, first, and for children the only authority, and from his autocratic power the other social authorities have developed in the course of the history of human civilization. Irving Stone, The Passions of the Mind (Life of Freud). [The father is the first authority and all other institutions model themselves on that power.]

Father 659 …an affectionate father who allowed his children to grow up along the lines of their own natures. Irving Stone, The Passions of the Mind (Life of Freud). [A good father who allows his children to develop their natural abilities.]

Father 720 Freud: …the killing of the father was the wish in the unconscious of every male child…. Irving Stone, The Passions of the Mind (Life of Freud). [Every male child has the unconscious desire to kill his father.]

Father 671 Yes, it’s a fearful thing to shed a father’s blood—the father who has begotten me, loved me, not spared his life for me, grieved over my illnesses from childhood up, troubled all his life for my happiness, and has lived in my joys, in my successes…to murder such a father is inconceivable. Dostoevsky, The Brothers Karamazov. [To murder a father after all he has done for you is inconceivable.]

Father 673 …the father is not merely who begets the child, but he who begets it and does his duty by it. Dostoevsky, The Brothers Karamazov. [A father is not one who merely begets, but who is also with you as you grow.]

Father 213 Priam: Think me more pitiful by far, since I/ have brought myself to do what no man else/ has done before—to lift to my lips the hand/ of one who killed my son. Homer, Iliad. [I am pitiful because I have made a deal with the man who killed my son.]

Fear 86 His stomach turned to stone. Childers, Wings of Morning.

Fear 228 [Fear of God]: …constructive, never destructive. Pope John Paul II, Threshold

Fear 14 The Wart found that, although he was frightened of the danger of the forest before it happened, once he was in it he was not frightened any more. T. H. White, The Once and Future King. [He was more afraid when anticipating danger than he felt when he was engaged with it.]

Fear 155 “It always kind of scares me these black nights,” said Mrs. Jake Dyer; “I expect something to clutch at me every minute, and I feel as if some sort of creatur’ was travelin’ right behind me when I am out doors in the dark.” Jewett, A Country Doctor. [When I’m out in the dark, I think somebody is following me.]

Fear 65 Fear always springs from ignorance. Emerson, The American Scholar.

Fear 576 He who fears he will suffer already suffers from his fear. Montaigne, Selected Essays.

Fear 1255 …during these last three weeks of the march, he [Pierre] had learned still another new and comforting truth—that there is nothing in the world to be dreaded. Tolstoi, War and Peace [After these experiences, he knew there was nothing to be afraid of in the world.]

Feeling 753 It is a matter which you do not see, but feel, and which, when you try to analyze it, seems to lose its very existence…. Hawthorne, The Blithedale Romance. [You can’t see it, but can only feel it; when you try to analyze it, it tends to disappear from existence.]

Feminism 405 Emma Benn was a militant feminist who resented her subsidiary position in an all-male society; she was particularly incensed over the Germanic concept of kinder, kirche, kuche, children, church, kitchen, as being the only activities proper or permissible to women, to which the more flexible Austrian husbands had added a fourth k: kaffeeklatsch. Irving Stone, The Passions of the Mind (Life of Freud). [She resented being a second class citizen in an all-male society, relegated to children, church, kitchen and kaffeeklatsch.]

Fences 105 Chesterton: Don’t ever take a fence down until you know the reason it was put up. Schlesinger, A Thousand Days

Fiction 118 Among all types of paper documents, narrative fiction is one of the few that will not benefit from electronic organization ....novels are linear...isn’t a technological artistic one...linearity is intrinsic to the storytelling process. Gates, The Road Ahead. [The storytelling process is linear.]

Fiction 286 Nabokov: For me a work of fiction exists only insofar as it affords me what I shall bluntly call aesthetic bliss, that is a sense of being somehow, somewhere connected with other states of being.... Nabokov, Lolita. [The major benefit of fiction is feeling connected to something outside of me.]

Fiction 287 Nabokov: It is childish to study a work of fiction in order to gain information about a country or about a social class or about the author. Nabokov, Lolita. [You don’t read fiction for information. I respectfully disagree. You learn a lot about whaling from Moby Dick, etc. RayS.]

Fiction 25 John Hersey: [fiction] makes truth plausible. Hull, ed. The Writer’s Book.

Fiction vi Somerset Maugham: There are three rules for writing the novel: unfortunately, no one knows what they are. Plimpton, ed. The Writer’s Chapbook

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