1969 Quotes

Quotes tagged as "1969" (showing 1-30 of 49)
Maya Angelou
“The caged bird sings with a fearful trill,
of things unknown, but longed for still,
and his tune is heard on the distant hill,
for the caged bird sings of freedom.”
Maya Angelou, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

Maya Angelou
“I believe most plain girls are virtuous because of the scarcity of opportunity to be otherwise.”
Maya Angelou, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

Wilhelm Reich
“Open confession of dictatorship is far less dangerous than sham democracy. One can defend oneself against the former; the latter is like a creeper attached to the body of a drowning man.”
Wilhelm Reich, The Mass Psychology of Fascism

Wilhelm Reich
“Originally and naturally, sexual pleasure was the good, the beautiful, the happy, that which united man with nature in general. When sexual feelings and religious feelings became separated from one another, that which is sexual was forced to become the bad, the internal, the diabolical.”
Wilhelm Reich, The Mass Psychology of Fascism

Wilhelm Reich
“Finally, we arrive at the question of the so-called nonpolitical man. Hitler not only established his power from the very beginning with masses of people who were until then essentially nonpolitical; he also accomplished his last step to victory in March of 1933 in a "legal" manner, by mobilizing no less than five million nonvoters, that is to say, nonpolitical people. The Left parties had made every effort to win over the indifferent masses, without posing the question as to what it means "to be indifferent or nonpolitical."

If an industrialist and large estate owner champions a rightist party, this is easily understood in terms of his immediate economic interests. In his case a leftist orientation would be at variance with his social situation and would, for that reason, point to irrational motives. If an industrial worker has a leftist orientation, this too is by all mean rationally consistent—it derives from his economic and social position in industry. If, however, a worker, an employee, or an official has a rightist orientation, this must be ascribed to a lack of political clarity, i.e., he is ignorant of his social position. The more a man who belongs to the broad working masses is nonpolitical, the more susceptible he is to the ideology of political reaction. To be nonpolitical is not, as one might suppose, evidence of a passive psychic condition, but of a highly active attitude, a defense against the awareness of social responsibility. The analysis of this defense against consciousness of one's social responsibility yields clear insights into a number of dark questions concerning the behavior of the broad nonpolitical strata. In the case of the average intellectual "who wants nothing to do with politics," it can easily be shown that immediate economic interests and fears related to his social position, which is dependent upon public opinion, lie at the basis of his noninvolvement. These fears cause him to make the most grotesque sacrifices with respect to his knowledge and convictions. Those people who are engaged in the production process in one way or another and are nonetheless socially irresponsible can be divided into two major groups. In the case of the one group the concept of politics is unconsciously associated with the idea of violence and physical danger, i.e., with an intense fear, which prevents them from facing life realistically. In the case of the other group, which undoubtedly constitutes the majority, social irresponsibility is based on personal conflicts and anxieties, of which the sexual anxiety is the predominant one. […] Until now the revolutionary movement has misunderstood this situation. It attempted to awaken the "nonpolitical" man by making him conscious solely of his unfulfilled economic interests. Experience teaches that the majority of these "nonpolitical" people can hardly be made to listen to anything about their socio-economic situation, whereas they are very accessible to the mystical claptrap of a National Socialist, despite the fact that the latter makes very little mention of economic interests. [This] is explained by the fact that severe sexual conflicts (in the broadest sense of the word), whether conscious or unconscious, inhibit rational thinking and the development of social responsibility. They make a person afraid and force him into a shell. If, now, such a self-encapsulated person meets a propagandist who works with faith and mysticism, meets, in other words, a fascist who works with sexual, libidinous methods, he turns his complete attention to him. This is not because the fascist program makes a greater impression on him than the liberal program, but because in his devotion to the führer and the führer's ideology, he experiences a momentary release from his unrelenting inner tension. Unconsciously, he is able to give his conflicts a different form and in this way to "solve" them.”
Wilhelm Reich, The Mass Psychology of Fascism

Wilhelm Reich
“The fascist dictator declares that the masses of people are biologically inferior and crave authority, that basically, they are slaves by nature. Hence, a totalitarian authoritarian regime is the only possible form of government for such people. It is significant that all dictators who today plunge the world into misery stem from the suppressed masses of people. They are intimately familiar with this sickness on the part of masses of people. What they lack is an insight into natural processes and development, the will to truth and research, so that they are never moved by a desire to want to change these facts.

On the other hand, the formal democratic leaders made the mistake of assuming that the masses of people were automatically capable of freedom and thereby precluded every possibility of establishing freedom and self-responsibility in masses of people as long as they were in power. They were engulfed in the catastrophe and will never reappear.

Our answer is scientific and rational. It is based on the fact that masses of people are indeed incapable of freedom, but it does not—as racial mysticism does—look upon this incapacity as absolute, innate, and eternal. It regards this incapacity as the result of former social conditions of life and, therefore, as changeable.
Wilhelm Reich, The Mass Psychology of Fascism

Wilhelm Reich
“More than economic dependency of the wife and children on the husband and father is needed to preserve the institution of the authoritarian family [and its support of the authoritarian state]. For the suppressed classes, this dependency is endurable only on condition that the consciousness of being a sexual being is suspended as completely as possible in women and in children. The wife must not figure as a sexual being, but solely as a child-bearer. Essentially, the idealization and deification of motherhood, which are so flagrantly at variance with the brutality with which the mothers of the toiling masses are actually treated, serve as means of preventing women from gaining a sexual consciousness, of preventing the imposed sexual repression from breaking through and of preventing sexual anxiety and sexual guilt-feelings from losing their hold. Sexually awakened women, affirmed and recognized as such, would mean the complete collapse of the authoritarian ideology. Conservative sexual reform has always made the mistake of merely making a slogan of "the right of woman to her own body," and not clearly and unmistakably regarding and defending woman as a sexual being, at least as much as it regards and defends her as a mother. Furthermore, conservative sexual reform based its sexual policies predominantly on the function of procreation, instead of undermining the reactionary view that equates sexuality and procreation.”
Wilhelm Reich, The Mass Psychology of Fascism

Wilhelm Reich
“As bitter as it may be, the fact remains: It is the irresponsibleness of masses of people that lies at the basis of fascism of all countries, nations, and races, etc. Fascism is the result of man's distortion over thousands of years. It could have developed in any country or nation. It is not a character trait that is confined specifically to the Germans or Italians. It is manifest in every single individual of the world. The Austrian saying "Da kann man halt nix machen" expresses this fact just as the American saying "Let George do it." That this situation was brought about by a social development which goes back thousands of years does not alter the fact itself. It is man himself who is responsible and not "historical developments." It was the shifting of the responsibility from living man to "historical developments" that caused the downfall of the socialist freedom movements. However, the events of the past twenty years demand the responsibility of the working masses of people.

If we take "freedom" to mean first and foremost the responsibility of each individual to shape personal, occupational, and social existence in a rational way, then it can be said that there is no greater fear than the fear of the creation of general freedom. Unless this basic problem is given complete priority and solved, there will never be a freedom capable of lasting more than one or two generations.”
Wilhelm Reich, The Mass Psychology of Fascism

Wilhelm Reich
Ungratified sexuality is readily transformed into rage. "Prison explosions" are outbreaks of sadism resulting from the absence of sexual gratification. Hence, when 33,000 workers leave their employment site all at once precisely in spring, there can be no doubt that the unsatisfying sex-economic conditions in the Soviet Union are the cause. By "sex-economic conditions" we mean more than just the possibility of a regulated and satisfying love life; over and above this we mean everything that is related to pleasure and the joy of life in one's work.”
Wilhelm Reich, The Mass Psychology of Fascism

Wilhelm Reich
“The German and Russian state apparatuses grew out of despotism. For this reason the subservient nature of the human character of masses of people in Germany and in Russia was exceptionally pronounced. Thus, in both cases, the revolution led to a new despotism with the certainty of irrational logic. In contrast to the German and Russia state apparatuses, the American state apparatus was formed by groups of people who had evaded European and Asian despotism by fleeing to a virgin territory free of immediate and effective traditions. Only in this way can it be understood that, until the time of this writing, a totalitarian state apparatus was not able to develop in America, whereas in Europe every overthrow of the government carried out under the slogan of freedom inevitably led to despotism. This holds true for Robespierre, as well as for Hitler, Mussolini, and Stalin. If we want to appraise the facts impartially, then we have to point out, whether we want to or not, and whether we like it or not, that Europe's dictators, who based their power on vast millions of people, always stemmed from the suppressed classes. I do not hesitate to assert that this fact, as tragic as it is, harbors more material for social research than the facts related to the despotism of a czar or of a Kaiser Wilhelm. By comparison, the latter facts are easily understood. The founders of the American Revolution had to build their democracy from scratch on foreign soil. The men who accomplished this task had all been rebels against English despotism. The Russian Revolutionaries, on the other had, were forced to take over an already existing and very rigid government apparatus. Whereas the Americans were able to start from scratch, the Russians, as much as they fought against it, had to drag along the old. This may also account for the fact that the Americans, the memory of their own flight from despotism still fresh in their minds, assumed an entirely different—more open and more accessible—attitude toward the new refugees of 1940, than Soviet Russia, which closed its doors to them. This may explain why the attempt to preserve the old democratic ideal and the effort to develop genuine self-administration was much more forceful in the United States than anywhere else. We do not overlook the many failures and retardations caused by tradition, but in any event a revival of genuine democratic efforts took place in America and not in Russia. It can only be hoped that American democracy will thoroughly realize, and this before it is too late, that fascism is not confined to any one nation or any one party; and it is to be hoped that it will succeed in overcoming the tendency toward dictatorial forms in the people themselves. Only time will tell whether the Americans will be able to resist the compulsion of irrationality or whether they will succumb to it.”
Wilhelm Reich, The Mass Psychology of Fascism

Wilhelm Reich
“Under the influence of politicians, masses of people tend to ascribe the responsibility for wars to those who wield power at any given time. In World War I it was the munitions industrialists; in World War II it was the psychopathic generals who were said to be guilty. This is passing the buck. The responsibility for wars falls solely upon the shoulders of these same masses of people, for they have all the necessary means to avert war in their own hands. In part by their apathy, in part by their passivity, and in part actively, these same masses of people make possible the catastrophes under which they themselves suffer more than anyone else. To stress this guilt on the part of masses of people, to hold them solely responsible, means to take them seriously. On the other hand, to commiserate masses of people as victims, means to treat them as small, helpless children. The former is the attitude held by the genuine freedom-fighters; the latter the attitude held by the power-thirsty politicians.”
Wilhelm Reich, The Mass Psychology of Fascism

Wilhelm Reich
“A young house painter who fails miserably in his choice of profession is capable, also for a period of twenty years, of having himself talked about the world over, without having accomplished a single, useful, objective, practical piece of work. In this case, also, it is a tremendous noise that one day quietly fades away into an "all to no avail." The world of work continues on its calm, quiet, vitally necessary course. Of the great tumult, nothing remains but a chapter in falsely oriented history books, which are only a burden to our children.”
Wilhelm Reich, The Mass Psychology of Fascism

Wilhelm Reich
“The patriarchal authoritarian sexual order that resulted from the revolutionary processes of latter-day matriarchy (economic independence of the chief's family from the maternal gens, a growing exchange of goods between the tribes, development of the means of production, etc.) becomes the primary basis of authoritarian ideology by depriving the women, children, and adolescents of their sexual freedom, making a commodity of sex and placing sexual interests in the service of economic subjugation. From now on, sexuality is indeed distorted; it becomes diabolical and demonic and has to be curbed. In terms of patriarchal demands, the innocent sensuousness of matriarchy appears as the lascivious unchaining of dark powers. The Dionysian becomes "sinful yearning," which patriarchal culture can conceive of only as something chaotic and "dirty." Surrounded by and imbued with human sexual structures that have become distorted and lascivious, patriarchal man is shackled for the first time in an ideology in which sexual and dirty, sexual and vulgar or demonic, became inseparable associations.”
Wilhelm Reich, The Mass Psychology of Fascism

Roger Zelazny
“It would be an act of wisdom to depart immediately… but wisdom is itself the product of knowledge; and knowledge, unfortunately, is generally the product of foolish doings. So, to add to my own knowledge and to enhance my wisdom I shall remain another day, to see what occurs.”
Roger Zelazny, Creatures of Light and Darkness

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
“When our life crackles and sparks like a torch, we curse the necessity of spending eight hours uselessly in sleep. When we have been deprived of everything, when we have been deprived of hope, then bless you, fourteen hours of sleep!”
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago, 1918-1956: An Experiment in Literary Investigation, Books I-II

Wilhelm Reich
“A third emotional source of the defense forces is the sadistic conception of sexuality that the children of all patriarchal cultural circles acquire in early childhood. Since every inhibition of genital gratification intensifies the sadistic impulse, the entire sexual structure becomes sadistic. Since, moreover, genital claims are replaced by anal claims, the reactionary sexual slogan that a woman is degraded by sexual intercourse strikes a chord in the adolescent structure. In short, it is owing to the already existing perversity in the adolescent structure that the slogan can be effective. It is from his own personal experience that the adolescent has developed a sadistic conception of sexual intercourse. Thus, here too we find a confirmation of the fact that man's compulsive moralistic defense forces constitute the basis of political reaction's power.”
Wilhelm Reich, The Mass Psychology of Fascism

Hannah Arendt
“The success of totalitarian movements among the masses meant the end of two illusions of democratically ruled countries in general and of European nation-states and their party system in particular. The first was that each individual was in sympathy with one's own or somebody else's party. On the contrary, the movements showed that the politically neutral and indifferent masses could easily be the majority in a democratically ruled country, that therefore a democracy could function according to rules which are actively recognized by one a minority. The second democratic illusion exploded by the totalitarian movements was that these politically indifferent masses did not matter, that they were truly neutral and constituted no more than the inarticulate backward setting for the political life of the nation. Now they made apparent what no other organ of public opinion had ever been able to show, namely, that democratic government had rested as much on the silent approbation and tolerance of the indifferent and inarticulate sections of the people as on the articulate and visible institutions and organization of the country. Thus when the totalitarian movements invaded Parliament with their contempt for parliamentary government, they merely appeared inconsistent: actually, they succeeded in convincing the people at large that parliamentary majorities were spurious and did not necessarily correspond to the realities of the country, thereby undermining the self-respect and the confidence of governments which also believed in majority rule rather than in their constitutions.”
Hannah Arendt, The Origins of Totalitarianism

Wilhelm Reich
“Yet, it was precisely our failure to differentiate between work and politics, between reality and illusion; it was precisely our mistake of conceiving of politics as a rational human activity comparable to the sowing of seeds or the construction of buildings that was responsible for the fact that a painter who failed to make the grade was able to plunge the whole world into misery. And I have stressed again and again that the main purpose of this book—which, after all, was not written merely for the fun of it—was to demonstrate these catastrophic errors in human thinking and to eliminate irrationalism from politics. It is an essential part of our social tragedy that the farmer, the industrial worker, the physician, etc., do not influence social existence solely through their social activities, but also and even predominantly through their political ideologies. For political activity hinders objective and professional activity; it splits every profession into inimical ideologic groups; creates a dichotomy in the body of industrial workers; limits the activity of the medical profession and harms the patients. In short, it is precisely political activity that prevents the realization of that which it pretends to fight for: peace, work, security, international cooperation, free objective speech, freedom of religion, etc.”
Wilhelm Reich, The Mass Psychology of Fascism

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
“Even a strong man had no way left him to fight the prison machine, except perhaps suicide. But is suicide really resistance? Isn't it actually submission?”
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago, 1918-1956: An Experiment in Literary Investigation, Books I-II

Hannah Arendt
“Totalitarian propaganda perfects the techniques of mass propaganda, but it neither invents them nor originates their themes. These were prepared for them by fifty years of imperialism and disintegration of the nation-state, when the mob entered the scene of European politics. Like the earlier mob leaders, the spokesmen for totalitarian movements possessed an unerring instinct for anything that ordinary party propaganda or public opinion did not care or dare to touch. Everything hidden, everything passed over in silence, became of major significance, regardless of its own intrinsic importance. The mob really believed that truth was whatever respectable society had hypocritically passed over, or covered up with corruption.”
Hannah Arendt, The Origins of Totalitarianism

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
“From our experience of the past and our literature of the past we have derived a naïve faith in the power of a hunger strike. But the hunger strike is a purely moral weapon. It presupposes that the jailer has not entirely lost his conscience. Or that the jailer is afraid of public opinion. Only in such circumstances can it be effective.”
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago, 1918-1956: An Experiment in Literary Investigation, Books I-II

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
“But there is a limit, and beyond it one is no longer willing, one finds it too repulsive, to be a reasonable little rabbit. And that is the limit beyond which rabbits are enlightened by the common understanding that all rabbits are foredoomed to become only meat and pelts, and that at best, therefore, one can gain only postponement of death and not life in any case. That is when one wants to shout: "Curse you, hurry up and shoot!”
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago, 1918-1956: An Experiment in Literary Investigation, Books I-II

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
“So what is the answer? How can you stand your ground when you are weak and sensitive to pain, when people you love are still alive, when you are unprepared?
What do you need to make you stronger than the Interrogator and the whole trap?
From the moment you go to prison you must put your cozy past firmly behind you. At the very threshold, you must say to yourself: "My life is over, a little early to be sure, but there's nothing to be done about it. I shall never return to freedom. I am condemned to die—now or a little later. But later on, in truth, it will be even harder, and so the sooner the better. I no longer have any property whatsoever. For me those I love have died, and for them I have died. From today on, my body is useless and alien to me. Only my spirit and my conscience remain precious and important to me."
Confronted by such a prisoner, the Interrogation will tremble.
Only the man who has renounced everything can win that victory.”
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago, 1918-1956: An Experiment in Literary Investigation, Books I-II

Roger Zelazny
“Can life be counted upon to limit itself? No. It is the mindless striving of two to become infinity. Can death be counted upon to limit itself? Never. It is the equally mindless effort of zero to encompass infinity.”
Roger Zelazny, Creatures of Light and Darkness

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
“(Please forgive us, reader. We have once more gone astray with this rightist opportunism—this concept of "guilt," and of the guilty or innocent. It has, after all, been explained to us that the heart of the matter is not personal guilt, but social danger. One can imprison an innocent person if he is socially hostile. And one can release a guilty man if he is socially friendly. But lacking legal training, we can be forgiven, for the 1926 [Soviet Criminal] Code, according to which, my good fellow, we lived for twenty-five years and more, was itself criticized for an "impermissible bourgeois approach," for an "insufficiently class-conscious approach," and for some kind of "bourgeois weighting of punishment in relation to the gravity of what had been committed.")”
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago, 1918-1956: An Experiment in Literary Investigation, Books I-II

Roger Zelazny
“What difference does it make whether you slay him or Horus slays him? He will be just as dead either way."
Wakim pauses, apparently considering the matter, as if for the first time.
"This thing is my mission, not his." he says at length.
"He will be just as dead, either way," Vramin repeats.
"But not by my hand."
"True. But I fail to see the distinction."
"So do I, for that matter. But it is I who have been charged with the task."
"Perhaps Horus has also."
"But not by my master."
"Why should you have a master, Wakim? Why are you not your own man?"
Wakim rubs his forehead.
"I—do not—really know…. But I must do as I am told.”
Roger Zelazny, Creatures of Light and Darkness

Erich Fromm
“It becomes ever increasingly clear to many students of man and of the contemporary scene that the crucial difficulty with which we are confronted lies in the fact that the development of man's intellectual capacities has far outstripped the development of his emotions. Man's brain lives in the twentieth century; the heart of most men lives still in the Stone Age. The majority of men have not yet acquired the maturity to be independent, to be rational, to be objective. They need myths and idols to endure the fact that man is all by himself, that there is no authority which gives meaning to life except man himself. Man represses the irrational passions of destructiveness, hate, envy, revenge; he worships power, money, the sovereign state, the nation; while he pays lip service to the teachings of the great spiritual leaders of the human race, those of Buddha, the prophets, Socrates, Jesus, Mohammed—he has transformed these teachings into a jungle of superstition and idol-worship. How can mankind save itself from destroying itself by this discrepancy between intellectual-technical over-maturity and emotional backwardness?”
Erich Fromm, Escape from Freedom

Wilhelm Reich
“With the imposition of chastity, women become unchaste under the pressure of their sexual demands; the sexual brutality on the part of the male, and the corresponding conception on the part of the female that for her the sexual act is something disgraceful, takes the place of natural orgastic sensuousness. Extramarital sexual intercourse, to be sure, is not done away with anywhere. With the shifting of the valuation and the abolition of the institutions that previously protected and sanctioned it in a matriarchal society, it becomes involved in a conflict with official morality and is forced to lead a clandestine existence. The change in the social attitude toward sexual intercourse also effects a change in the inner experience of sexuality. The conflict that is now created between the natural and "sublime morality" disturbs the individual's ability to gratify his needs. The feeling of guilt now associated with sexuality cleaves the natural, orgastic course of sexual coalescence and produces a damming up of sexual energy, which later breaks out in various ways. Neuroses, sexual aberrations, and antisocial sexuality become permanent social phenomena. Childhood and adolescent sexuality, which were given a positive value in the original matriarchal work-democracy, fall prey to systematic suppression, which differs only in form. As time goes on, this sexuality, which is distorted, disturbed, brutalized, and prostituted, advocates the very ideology to which it owes its origin. Those who negate sexuality can now justifiably point to it as something brutal and dirty. That this dirty sexuality is not natural sexuality but merely patriarchal sexuality is simply overlooked. And the sexology of latter-day capitalistic patriarchy is no less affected by this evaluation than the vulgar views. This condemns it to complete sterility.”
Wilhelm Reich, The Mass Psychology of Fascism

Erich Fromm
“Or, to choose another example, we feel that freedom of speech is the last step in the march of victory of freedom. We forget that, although freedom of speech constitutes an important victory in the battle against old restraints, modern man is in a position where much of what "he" thinks and says are the things that everybody else thinks and says; that he has not acquired the ability to think originally—that is, for himself—which alone gives meaning to his claim that nobody can interfere with the expression of his thoughts. Again, we are proud that in his conduct of life man has become free from external authorities, which tell him what to do and what not to do. We neglect the role of the anonymous authorities like public opinion and "common sense," which are so powerful because of our profound readiness to conform to the expectations everybody has about ourselves and our equally profound fear of being different. In other words, we are fascinated by the growth of freedom from powers outside of ourselves and are blinded to the fact of inner restraints, compulsions, and fears, which tend to undermine the meaning of the victories freedom has won against its traditional enemies. We therefore are prone to think that the problem of freedom is exclusively that of gaining still more freedom of the kind we have gained in the course of modern history, and to believe that the defense of freedom against such powers that deny such freedom is all that is necessary. We forget that, although each of the liberties which have been won must be defended with utmost vigor, the problem of freedom is not only a quantitative one, but a qualitative one; that we not only have to preserve and increase the traditional freedom, but that we have to gain a new kind of freedom, one which enables us to realize our own individual self, to have faith in this self and in life.”
Erich Fromm, Escape from Freedom

Wilhelm Reich
Without the power to put them into practice, truths are of no use. They remain academic.
Power, no matter what kind of power it is, without a foundation in truth, is a dictatorship,
more or less and in one way or another, for it is always based on man's fear of the social responsibility and personal burden that "freedom" entails.
Dictatorial power and truth do not go together. They are mutually exclusive.
Wilhelm Reich, The Mass Psychology of Fascism

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