A scrapbook of stuff I'm reading / looking at / listening to / thinking about...
Posts tagged "solitude"
Mar 22, 2013
Loneliness is solitude with a problem.
Mar 03, 2013
Literature is, in that way, a solitary act of being with your own conscience. And yet, reading is also a conversation — it’s a conversation over the ages. You are speaking to the brightest and the best without the cumbersomeness of their presence… We begin with the solitude of reading which leads to the necessity of leaking, as it were, the pleasure you have to friends and the people around you, which then leads us back again to going deeper into the work… Sometimes I think I would say that we should live with these things ourselves, and not in the public realm. But I can’t keep myself from conversation. I urge you to read in solitude, but I also want to pull you out of that solitude and create some sort of dialogue.
Dec 27, 2012
Aug 10, 2012
Silence is still my favorite sound. When I turn my aids off my thoughts become more clear and it’s absolutely peaceful. I hope that one day hearing people get the opportunity to experience utter silence.
May 21, 2012
The only solution [to social media addiction] is not one that most people want to face, which is to become lovers of solitude and silence… I love to spend time alone in my room, and in my ideal world the first hour of every day would be in bed, writing down thoughts, harvesting dreams, before anyone phones or you have any internet access. I write on paper, cause if you write on a laptop, it’s too tempting to go online. You look up a word and then an hour later you remember why you went on…
Mar 03, 2012
Stop the madness for group work. Just stop it.
Jan 15, 2012
Most inventors and engineers I’ve met are like me … they live in their heads. They’re almost like artists. In fact, the very best of them are artists. And artists work best alone …. I’m going to give you some advice that might be hard to take. That advice is: Work alone… Not on a committee. Not on a team.
Jan 06, 2012
The great contemporary terror is anonymity. If Lionel Trilling was right, if the property that grounded the self, in Romanticism, was sincerity, and in modernism it was authenticity, then in postmodernism it is visibility. So we live exclusively in relation to others, and what disappears from our lives is solitude.
Nov 10, 2011
Nov 10, 2009
» Quitting the Paint Factory by Mark Slouka
Great essay about the importance of idleness.
Idleness is not just a psychological necessity, requisite to the construction of a complete human being; it constitutes as well a kind of political space, a space as necessary to the workings of an actual democracy as, say, a free press. How does it do this? By allowing us time to figure out who we are, and what we believe; by allowing us time to consider what is unjust, and what we might do about it. By giving the inner life (in whose precincts we are most ourselves) its due. Which is precisely what makes idleness dangerous. All manner of things can grow out of that fallow soil. Not for nothing did our mothers grow suspicious when we had “too much time on our hands.” They knew we might be up to something. And not for nothing did we whisper to each other, when we were up to something, “Quick, look busy.”
The title of the essay alludes to Sherwood Anderson:
the writer Sherwood Anderson found himself, at the age of thirty-six, the chief owner and general manager of a paint factory in Elyria, Ohio. Having made something of a reputation for himself as a copywriter in a Chicago advertising agency, he’d moved up a rung. He was on his way, as they say, a businessman in the making, perhaps even a tycoon in embryo. There was only one problem: he couldn’t seem to shake the notion that the work he was doing (writing circulars extolling the virtues of his line of paints) was patently absurd, undignified; that it amounted to a kind of prison sentence. Lacking the rationalizing gene, incapable of numbing himself sufficiently to make the days and the years pass without pain, he suffered and flailed. Eventually he snapped.