Sunday, March 20, 2011

Life : Circle or Line?


Quotes from Jill Lepore's article Twilight in this week's  The New Yorker:

The history of aging  appears to follow this rule: the fewer old people there are, the more esteemed they will be. (p.32)

Darkness used always to follow day, too, but it doesn't any more: now we turn on the lights and day never ends. Fortune used to be a wheel that turned, and turned again, now it's a number in a ledger, a score. During the past few centuries, life,along with other things, stopped being a circle and became a line, as the historian John Demos argued. Narratives of progress changed that. If life is a line, it can be longer. When that happened, Gray argues, we forgot how to die: "The hope of life after death has been replaced by the faith that death can be defeated." Once Darwin said we were animals, we stopped being human. (pp. 32,32)

No comments: