Quotes

If there was a vast development of production there was also a huge destruction of values.

Between these high lights accumulated disaster, social catastrophe. The coal mines were manifestly doomed to closure at no very distant date, the vast amount of capital invested in oil was becoming unsaleable, millions of coal miners, steel workers upon the old lines, vast swarms of unskilled or under-skilled labourers in innumerable occupations, were being flung out of employment by the superior efficiency of the new machinery

The world in these days was not really governed at all, in the sense in which government came to be understood in subsequent years. Government was a treaty, not a design; it was forensic, conservative, disputatious, unseeing, unthinking, uncreative; throughout the world, except where the vestiges of absolutism still sheltered the court favourite and the trusted servant, it was in the hands of the predominant caste of lawyers, who had an enormous advantage in being the only trained caste. Their professional education and every circumstance in the manipulation of the fantastically naive electoral methods by which they clambered to power, conspired to keep them contemptuous of facts, conscientiously unimaginative, alert to claim and seize advantages and suspicious of every generosity.

For more than a century the French system exhausted its vitality in belligerent convulsions, and then the infection passed to the German-speaking peoples who were the heart and centre of Europe, and from them onward to the Slavs.

the ultimate aim of art, religion, philosophy, and science alike was to simplify.

A population map of the world in 1950 would have followed seashore and river course so closely in its darker shading as to give an impression that homo sapiens was an amphibious animal.

Man who is ceasing to be an agricultural animal becomes more and more a builder, a traveller, and a maker.

And the chemists' triumphs of synthesis, which could now give us an entirely artificial food, remain largely in abeyance because it is so much more pleasant and interesting to eat natural produce and to grow such things upon the soil. Each year adds to the variety of our fruits and the delightfulness of our flowers.

Membership of the government, it was decided, must be for life, save in the exceptional case of a recall; but the elections, which were held quinquenially, were arranged to add fifty members on each occasion. The method of proportional representation with one transferable vote was adopted, and the voter might also write upon his voting paper in a specially marked space, the name of any of his representatives that he wished to recall. A ruler was recallable by as many votes as the quota by which he had been elected, and the original members by as many votes in any constituency as the returning quotas in the first election.

In that age they seem to have been perpetually making laws when we should alter regulations.

This phase of history, which has been not inaptly termed the 'Efflorescence,' is still, to a large extent, with us. The majority of our population consists of artists, and the bulk of activity in the world lies no longer with necessities but with their elaboration, decoration, and refinement.

The earlier novelists tried to show 'life as it is,' the latter showed life as it changes.

'We have so many men working now,' said Fowler. 'I suppose at present there must be at least a thousand thinking hard, observing, experimenting, for one who did so in nineteen hundred.'

Here—I must show you it to-day, because it will interest you—we have our copy of the encyclopaedic index—every week sheets are taken out and replaced by fresh sheets with new results that are brought to us by the aeroplanes of the Research Department. It is an index of knowledge that grows continually, an index that becomes continually truer. There was never anything like it before.'

So long as you are alive you are just the moment, perhaps, but when you are dead then you are all your life from the first moment to the last....'

I suppose that nothing less than the violence of those bombs could have released it and made it a healthy world again.

everything seemed turning to evil in those last years of the old time. Everywhere there were obsolete organisations seizing upon all the new fine things that science was giving to the world, nationalities, all sorts of political bodies, the churches and sects, proprietorship, seizing upon those treat powers and limitless possibilities and turning them to evil uses. And they would not suffer open speech, they would not permit of education, they would let no one be educated to the needs of the new time....

'It was not only that the mass of people would not attend, would not understand, but that those who did understand lacked the power of real belief. They said the things, they saw the things, and the things meant nothing to them....

All this new region of London they are opening up now is plastered with advertisements of pills. Everybody must have been taking pills.

Everybody in those days, wise or foolish, believed that the division of the world under a multitude of governments was inevitable, and that it was going on for thousands of years more. It WAS inevitable until it was impossible. Any one who had denied that inevitability publicly would have been counted—oh! a SILLY fellow.

'You know, sir, I've a fancy—it is hard to prove such things—that civilisation was very near disaster when the atomic bombs came banging into it, that if there had been no Holsten and no induced radio-activity, the world would have—smashed—much as it did. Only instead of its being a smash that opened a way to better things, it might have been a smash without a recovery.

Mankind used up material—insanely. They had got through three-quarters of all the coal in the planet, they had used up most of the oil, they had swept away their forests, and they were running short of tin and copper. Their wheat areas were getting weary and populous, and many of the big towns had so lowered the water level of their available hills that they suffered a drought every summer. The whole system was rushing towards bankruptcy. And they were spending every year vaster and vaster amounts of power and energy upon military preparations, and continually expanding the debt of industry to capital.

And then we came, man came, and opened eyes that were a question and hands that were a demand and began a mind and memory that dies not when men die, but lives and increases for ever, an over-mind, a dominating will, a question and an aspiration that reaches to the stars....

'The key that opens the door,' said Karenin, 'is not the goal of the journey.'

'I do not care a rap about your future—as women. I do not care a rap about the future of men—as males. I want to destroy these peculiar futures. I care for your future as intelligences, as parts of and contribution to the universal mind of the race. Humanity is not only naturally over-specialised in these matters, but all its institutions, its customs, everything, exaggerate, intensify this difference. I want to unspecialise women. No new idea. Plato wanted exactly that. I do not want to go on as we go now, emphasising this natural difference; I do not deny it, but I want to reduce it and overcome it.'

'Karenin?' asked Rachel, 'do you mean that women are to become men?' 'Men and women have to become human beings.'

I want to abolish the woman whose support is jealousy and whose gift possession. I want to abolish the woman who can be won as a prize or locked up as a delicious treasure.

To think of yourselves as women is to think of yourselves in relation to men. You can't escape that consequence. You have to learn to think of yourselves—for our sakes and your own sakes—in relation to the sun and stars. You have to cease to be our adventure, Rachel, and come with us upon our adventures. ...' He waved his hand towards the dark sky above the mountain crests.

Shan't we presently take a tabloid or lie in some field of force that will enable us to do with an hour or so of slumber and rise refreshed again?'

'In a little while men who will know how to bear the strange gravitations, the altered pressures, the attenuated, unfamiliar gases and all the fearful strangenesses of space will be venturing out from this earth. This ball will be no longer enough for us; our spirit will reach out.... Cannot you see how that little argosy will go glittering up into the sky, twinkling and glittering smaller and smaller until the blue swallows it up. They may succeed out there; they may perish, but other men will follow them.... 'It is as if a great window opened,' said Karenin.

Vocabulary

chisel claw fierce beset glimmering beget veils hewed bargaining propitiating aped amidst untrammelled hitherto warlocks covetousness heeded unwittingly timber lids swirl begotten chaps altar dismay fretted umpires opiate festoons lattice stroller ecstatic bethought reckoned unruly purposive trickling stonily heedless wards schemer diffident paraphernalia lull scanty dread blunder dropped crimson uproar craned tarpaulin ricks interspersed tussocks of corn and poppy wretch feeble preposterously meadows anointed plough thence shattering compelled alstribution contention smouldering thwarted dwindled hinder cowered self-forgetfulness misfit toiled nodded jostling lurk litter gnawing scarred peevish glimpses belittled mists quivers husks selvage unwholesome uncongenial daguerreotype stoutly riddles Helenism obstinacy winnowing cower

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