Courage to be-quotes


what’s the purpose of reading classic books?

It’s to get beyond newspaper and magazines. Most people read newspaper and watch TV and if they want to get profound they read magazine. But the people who write magazine have read these books so if you really want to get back to sources of things you have to read the books of philosophy which is where the ideas that get spread into the world first originated and where they first originated is where there are most deeply and most sharply often stated so it’s to get back to the first source of things and the reason for doing that is so that you don’t depend on other people its the kind of route to being independent or even free a free person with a sense of free is someone who doesn’t live off another person’s word or doesn’t live by the authority of this Society in our society the authority of public opinion and the way to achieve this independence is by reading especially the great books the classic books.

— Harvey Mansfield

……….dependent societies – the peripheral societies in the Third World and those just outside the central metropolitan zones – are to an extraordinary degree reliant upon this system for information about themselves. We’re talking about self-knowledge, not only knowledge about other societies…..

They are insidious because they’re presented as natural and real in a way that is virtually unassailable. we have not yet devised the means to deal with a television or film or even a script image, and to criticise the framework in which that image is presented, because it is given as reality, mediated so powerfully, and accepted almost subliminally. Finally, and perhaps most important, the response to this growing media dominance, and the solutions offered by the Socialist and Third World countries to combat the situation, are so primitive and crude that they don’t stand a chance of dealing with the challenge. For instance, limiting the means of production, government censorship and intervention, and so forth, are more likely to extend hegemony these measure are intended to combat than to limit it. what the proponents of a New Information Order are saying is essentially that either the West allows them to control their own news production and the entrance of its work into theirs, or they will simply remove themselves from the system and cut the West out. Then what do they offer their citizens as a result? A kind of illiteracy and parochial isolation that simply makes them more, rather than less, vulnerable to the blandishments and consumerist ideology of the prevailing technology and its metropolitan origins.

In the shadow of the west, Edward Said
Power, Politics and Culture