Thoughts on { Destruction | Walter Benjamin / Kurt Vonnegut / Aldous Huxley / Léon Bloy / Arthur Schopenhauer / William Blake / André Gide

Paul Klee Berg Landschaft 1938

Paul Klee, Berg-Landschaft, 1938

“Man could not both know and succumb. Meantime huge smoking cities arose, innumerable. Green leaves shrank before the hot breath of furnaces. The fair face of Nature was deformed as with the ravages of some loathsome disease”

Edgar Allan Poe, The Colloquy of Monos and Una, 1841

“That is how the European tribes operate, she said, If they can’t control it, they destroy it.”

Colson Whitehead, The Underground Railroad, 2016

“Another flaw in the human character is that everybody wants to build and nobody wants to do maintenance.”

Kurt Vonnegut, Hocus Pocus, 1990

“The destructive character knows only one watchword: make room; only one activity: clearing away.”

Walter Benjamin (1892-1940), One Way Street And Other Writings, 1979

“Bourgeois are by nature people who hate and destroy heavens. When they see a beautiful site, they have no more pressing dream than to cut the trees, dry up the springs, build streets, shops and urinals. They call this ceasing a business opportunity.”

Léon Bloy, 1846-1917

“A love of nature keeps no factories busy.”

Aldous Huxley, Brave New World, 1932

“For if the choice were given to any individual between his own destruction and that of the world, I do not need to say where it would land in the great majority.”

Arthur Schopenhauer, The Two Fundamental Problems of Ethics, 1839

“All futurity seems teeming with endless destruction never to be repelled; Desperate remorse swallows the present in a quenchless rage.”

William Blake, 1757-1827

“One can always find hands for a work of destruction.”

André Gide, The Counterfeiters, 1925

“The crime is more important than the punishment.”

Clarice Lispector, 1920-1977

“Beware of the robber, the cavalier, and ghost stories.”

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, 1749-1832

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