Formally Quotes (displaying: 1 - 30 of 205 quotes )
Who wouldn’t love this jargon we dress common sense in: "formal innovation is no longer transformative, having been co-opted by the forces of stabilization and post-industrial inertia," blah, blah. But this co-optation might actually be a good thing if it helped keep younger writers from being able to treat mere formal ingenuity as an end in itself. MTV-type co-optation could end up a great prophylactic against cleveritis—you know, the dreaded grad-school syndrome of like "Watch me use seventeen different points of view in this scene of a guy eating a Saltine." The real point of that shit is "Like me because I’m clever"—which of course is itself derived from commercial art’s axiom about audience-affection determining art’s value.
The closer they come to transcending technique and the memorization of lines--the closer to really beginning to act, in short--the more Chinese they begin to seem. Happy now approaches Miss Forsythe to pick her up in the restaurant with a wonderful formality, his back straight, head high, his hand-gestures even more precise and formal, but with a comic undertone that ironically comes closer to conveying the original American idea of the scene than when he was trying to be physically sloppy and "relaxed"--that is, imitating an American. I think that by some unplanned magic we may end up creating something not quite American or Chinese but a pure style springing from the heart of the play itself--the play as a nonnational event, that is, a human circumstance.
Wha?s precious about somebody like Bill Vollmann is that, even though ther?s a great deal of formal innovation in his fictions, it rarely seems to exist for just its own sake. I?s almost always deployed to make some point (Vollman?s the most editorial young novelist going right now, and h?s great at using formal ingenuity to make the editorializing a component of his narrative instead of an interruption) or to create an effect tha?s internal to the text. His narrato?s always weirdly effaced, the writing unself-conscious, despite all the "By-the-way-Dear-reader" intrusions. In a way i?s sad that Vollman?s integrity is so remarkable. Its remarkability means i?s rare
Contrary to what some folks would have us believe, it is not tragic, even if undesirable, for a person to leave a liberal arts education not having read major works from this canon. Their lives are not ending. And the exciting dimension of knowledge is that we can learn a work without formally studying it. If a student graduates without reading Shakespeare and then reads or studies this work later, it does not delegitimize whatever formal course of study that was completed.
All rational knowledge is either material, and concerns some objects, or formal, and is occupied only with the form of understanding and reason itself and with the universal rules of thinking, without regard to distinctions among objects. formal philosophy is called logic. Material philosophy, however, which has to do with definite object objects and the laws to which they are subject, is divided into two parts. This is because these laws are either laws of nature or laws of freedom. The science of the former is called physics, and that of the latter ethics. The former is also called theory of nature and the latter theory of morals.
Monogamy, in brief, kills passion -- and passion is the most dangerous of all the surviving enemies to what we call civilization, which is based upon order, decorum, restraint, formality, industry, regimentation. The civilized man -- the ideal civilized man -- is simply one who never sacrifices the common security to his private passions. He reaches perfection when he even ceases to love passionately -- when he reduces the most profound of all his instinctive experiences from the level of an ecstasy to the level of a mere device for replenishing the armies and workshops of the world, keeping clothes in repair, reducing the infant death-rate, providing enough tenants for every landlord, and making it possible for the Polizei to know where every citizen is at any hour of the day or night. Monogamy accomplishes this, not by producing satiety, but by destroying appetite. It makes passion formal and uninspiring, and so gradually kills it.
We all received invitations, made by hand from construction paper, with balloons containing our names in Magic Marker. Our amazement at being formally invited to a house we had only visited in our bathroom fantasies was so great that we had to compare one another's invitations before we believed it. It was thrilling to know that the Lisbon girls knew our names, that their delicate vocal cords had pronounced their syllables, and that they meant something in their lives. They had had to labor over proper spellings and to check our addresses in the phone book or by the metal numbers nailed to the trees.
What we call ‘normal’ is a product of repression, denial, splitting, projection, introjection and other forms of destructive action on experience. It is radically estranged from the structure of being. The more one sees this, the more senseless it is to continue with generalized descriptions of supposedly specifically schizoid, schizophrenic, hysterical ‘mechanisms.’ There are forms of alienation that are relatively strange to statistically ‘normal’ forms of alienation. The ‘normally’ alienated person, by reason of the fact that he acts more or less like everyone else, is taken to be sane. Other forms of alienation that are out of step with the prevailing state of alienation are those that are labeled by the ‘formal’ majority as bad or mad.
Americans. They came right out with things. Hitchens family lore related the tale of how once, when I was but a toddler, my parents were passing with me through an airport and ran into some Yanks. 'Real cute kid,' said these big and brash people without troubling to make a formal introduction. They insisted on photographing me and, before breaking off to resume their American lives, pressed into my dimpled fist a signed dollar bill in token of my cuteness. This story was often told (I expect that Yvonne and the Commander had been to an airport together perhaps three times in their lives) and always with a note of condescension. That was Americans for you: wanting to be friendly all right, but so loud, and inclined to flash the cash.
I Philo, educating yourself was something you had to do in spite if school, not because of it -- which is basically why so many of my high school peers are still there in Philo even now, selling one another insurance, drinking supermarket liquor, watching television, awaiting the formality of their first cardiac.
The alternate domination of one faction over another, sharpened by the spirit of revenge, natural to party dissension, which in different ages and countries has perpetrated the most horrid enormities, is itself a frightful despotism. But this leads at length to a more formal and permanent despotism. The disorders and miseries, which result, gradually incline the minds of men to seek security and repose in the absolute power of an individual; and sooner or later the chief of some prevailing faction, more able or more fortunate than his competitors, turns this disposition to the purposes of his own elevation, on the ruins of Public Liberty.
Let us begin this letter, this prelude to an encounter, formally, as a declaration, in the old-fashioned way: I love you. You do not know me (although you have seen me, smiled at me). I know you (although not so well as I would like. I want to be there when your eyes flutter open in the morning, and you see me, and you smile. Surely this would be paradise enough?). So I do declare myself to you now, with pen set to paper. I declare it again: I love you.
All my other current friends were "intellectuals"––Chad the Nietzschean anthropologist, Carlo Marx and his nutty surrealist low-voiced serious staring talk, Old Bull Lee and his critical anti-everything drawl––or else they were slinking criminals like Elmer Hassel, with that hip sneer; Jane Lee the same, sprawled on the Oriental cover of her couch, sniffing at the New Yorker. But Dean's intelligence was every bit as formal and shining and complete, without the tedious intellectualness. And his "criminality" was not something that sulked and sneered; it was a wild yea-saying overburst of American joy; it was Western, the west wind, an ode from the Plains, something new, long prophesied, long a-coming. Besides, all my New York friends were in the negative, nightmare position of putting down society and giving their tired bookish or political or psychoanalytical reasons, but Dean just raced in society, eager for bread and love; he didn't care one way or the other.
The desires of the heart are as crooked as corkscrews. Not to be born is the best for man. The second best is a formal order. The dance's pattern, dance while you can. Dance, dance, for the figure is easy. The tune is catching and will not stop. Dance till the stars come down from the rafters. Dance, dance, dance till you drop.
I am not a 'democrat' only because 'humility' and equality are spiritual principles corrupted by the attempt to mechanize and formalize them, with the result that we get not universal smallness and humility, but universal greatness and pride, till some Orc gets hold of a ring of power--and then we get and are getting slavery.
There’s no point in acting surprised about it. All the planning charts and demolition orders have been on display at your local planning department in Alpha Centauri for 50 of your Earth years, so you’ve had plenty of time to lodge any formal complaint and it’s far too late to start making a fuss about it now. … What do you mean you’ve never been to Alpha Centauri? Oh, for heaven’s sake, mankind, it’s only four light years away, you know. I’m sorry, but if you can’t be bothered to take an interest in local affairs, that’s your own lookout. Energize the demolition beams.
After great pain, a formal feeling comes — The Nerves sit ceremonious, like Tombs — The stiff Heart questions was it He, that bore, And Yesterday, or Centuries before? The Feet, mechanical, go round — Of Ground, or Air, or Ought — A Wooden way Regardless grown, A Quartz contentment, like a stone — This is the Hour of Lead — Remembered, if outlived, As Freezing persons, recollect the Snow — First — Chill — then Stupor — then the letting go —
Like it or not, it's the society we live in. Even the standard of right and wrong has been subdivided, made sophisticated. Within good, there's fashionable good and unfashionable good, and ditto for bad. Within fashionable good, there's formal and then there's casual; there's hip, there's cool, there's trendy, there's snobbish. Mix 'n' match.