24 February 2012

Private freedom and its perversion through publicity

"Private judgement is still free in private and that freedom is the essence of freedom. ... We must extinguish the coarse glare of advertisement and publicity, not merely because the limelight is apt to be held in incompetent hands, but because of the psychological effect of such illumination upon those who receive it. ... [We] guess that ease and freedom, the power to change and the power to grow, can only be preserved by obscurity; and that if we wish to help the human mind to create, and to prevent it from scoring the same rut repeatedly, we must do what we can to shroud it in darkness." (Virginia Woolf Three Guineas pp. 842, 865f)

I have every reason to be mistrusting of the flattery of public attention. That way lies the danger of losing my self. And in this age when modernity has reached its pinnacle and consummation. the pressure to conform to the hegemonic worldview is overwhelming. Anyone putting it into question is 'obviously' not at the forefront of progress, is incomprehensible, is obscure...

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