Pathology Quotes (displaying: 1 - 20 of 20 quotes )
The American revolution, the terms are these: not that I drive you out or that you drive me out, but that we come together and embrace and learn to live together. That is the only way that we can have achieved the American revolution. Now, if we can face this, it involves facing a great many things. It demands that white people face the fact that I, for example, or any black person they will ever meet or have ever met—I am not an exotic rarity. I am not a stranger. I am none of those things. On the contrary, for all you know, for all you know, I might be your uncle, your brother, your cousin, among other things. One of the things that has happened here—and the pathology of the Deep South proves it; so does the pathology of the North, which dictates to them that they move out and I move in—among other things which have to be excavated here is the fact that this long history is also the history of a love affair.
One writes of scars healed, a loose parallel to the pathology of the skin, but there is no such thing in the life of an individual. There are open wounds, shrunk sometimes to the size of a pin-prick but wounds still. The marks of suffering are more comparable to the loss of a finger, or of the sight of an eye. We may not miss them, either, for one minute in a year, but if we should there is nothing to be done about it.
I knew I had an ugly life. I knew I was lonely and I was scared. I thought something might be wrong with my father, wrong in the worst possible way. I believed he might contain a pathology of the mind--an emptiness--a knocking hollow where his soul should have been. But I also knew that one day, I would grow up. One day, I would be twenty, or thirty, or forty, even fifty and sixty and seventy and eighty and maybe even one hundred years old. And all those years were mine, they belonged to nobody but me. So even if I was unhappy now, it could all change tomorrow. Maybe I didn't even need to jump off the cliff to experience that kind of freedom. Maybe the fact that I knew such a freedom existed in the world meant that I could someday find it. Maybe, I thought, I don't need a father to be happy. Maybe, what you get from a father you can get somewhere else, from somebody else, later. Or maybe you can just work around what's missing, build the house of your life over the hole that is there and always will be.
In other words, if Dostoyevsky and Tolstoy showed more than their fair share of pathology it was due less to the requirements of their creative work than to the personal sufferings caused by the unhealthy conditions of a Russian society nearing collapse. If so many American poets and playwrights committed suicide or ended up addicted to drugs and alcohol it was not their creativity that did it but an artistic scene that promised much, gave few rewards and left nine out of ten artists neglected if not ignored.
Hobbes's analysis of the causes of violence, borne out by modern data on crime and war, shows that violence is not a primitive, irrational urge, nor is it a "pathology" except in the metaphorical sense of a condition that everyone would like to eliminate. Instead, it is a near-inevitable outcome of the dynamics of self-interested, rational social organisms.