Dreams

January 10, 2007 at 10:35 pm (Quotes) (, , , , )

“I want to believe that what underlies all of this is something more intangible than The Human Manifesto: that the ideas within it are merely a psychotic’s way of explaining away the divisions that we seem addicted to. But then it occurs to me that the book many claim as the first novel, Daniel Defoe’s A Journal of the Plague Years, was written in the aftermath of a disease that swept the whole of Europe, and could have been blamed on the way we live together, cheek by jowl; and that our major forms of entertainment, film and television, both burst into true flower immediately after world wars. I begin to wonder if fictional landscapes and aspirational schemes became important as soon as we started to live together in towns and cities, and if this explains the birth of organized religions at about the same time. The more crowded our way of living, the more interdependent we are, and the more important our dreams have become — almost as if all of this is there to bond us together, to help us aspire to something missing, and so to edge us toward a humanity that is more than merely being human. … The closer we’re brought together, the more we seem to understand what we are.”

–Ward Hopkins
(Michael Marshall, The Straw Men)

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