Social Criticism Quotes

Quotes tagged as "social-criticism" Showing 1-30 of 57
Steven Pinker
“Much of what is today called "social criticism" consists of members of the upper classes denouncing the tastes of the lower classes (bawdy entertainment, fast food, plentiful consumer goods) while considering themselves egalitarians.”
Steven Pinker, The Blank Slate: The Modern Denial of Human Nature

James Howard Kunstler
“The United States is the wealthiest nation in the history of the world, yet its inhabitants are strikingly unhappy. Accordingly, we present to the rest of mankind, on a planet rife with suffering and tragedy, the spectacle of a clown civilization. Sustained on a clown diet rich in sugar and fat, we have developed a clown physiognomy. We dress like clowns. We move about a landscape filled with cartoon buildings in clownmobiles, absorbed in clownish activities. We fill our idle hours enjoying the canned antics of professional clowns... Death, when we acknowledge it, is just another pratfall on the boob tube. Bang! You're dead!”
James Howard Kunstler

“Ah, Sir, a novel is a mirror carried along a high road. At one moment it reflects to your vision the azure skies, at another the mire of the puddles at your feet. And the man who carries this mirror in his pack will be accused by you of being immoral! His mirror shews the mire, and you blame the mirror! Rather blame that high road upon which the puddle lies, still more the inspector of roads who allows the water to gather and the puddle to form.”
Stendhal, The Red and the Black

David McCullough
“Indeed, bribery, favoritism, and corruption in a great variety of forms were rampant not only in politics, but in all levels of society.”
David McCullough, 1776

Ben Aaronovitch
“Or as my dad always says: it only becomes a social problem when the working man joins in.”
Ben Aaronovitch, Lies Sleeping

Kakuzō Okakura
“Behold the complacent salesman retailing the Good and True.
One can even buy a so-called Religion, which is really but common
morality sanctified with flowers and music. Rob the Church of her
accessories and what remains behind? Yet the trusts thrive marvelously,
for the prices are absurdly cheap,--a prayer for a ticket to heaven,
a diploma for an honorable citizenship.Hide yourself under a bushel
quickly, for if your real usefulness were known to the world you would
soon be knocked down to the highest bidder by the public auctioneer.”
Kakuzo Okakura, The Book of Tea

Edward Bond
“I think drama has to push things to extremes so that we can understand what we are doing in our society.”
Edward Bond

David Hume
“A man who hides himself, confesses as evidently the superiority of his enemy, as another, who fairly delivers his arms.”
David Hume, A Treatise of Human Nature

Eda J. Vor
“But this is the power of storytelling, isn’t it? To make sense of the things we can’t figure out ourselves. We make up gods and monsters and origin stories and archetypes and tell each other it’s all explainable so we don’t have to feel the weight of the unknown. That’s the theory anyway. The practice is that we’re all so much better at seeing the faults of others, at watching them make their mistakes and judging from afar, our social telescopes so much more powerful than the microscopes we forget to use on ourselves.”
Eda J. Vor, Fully Functioning: a postpartum descent into obsessive fangirling

Mokokoma Mokhonoana
“Unfortunately, human progress is generally determined not by our spiritual, our emotional, and our intellectual development but by that of our technologies.”
Mokokoma Mokhonoana

Anand Giridharadas
“For every thought leader who offered advice on how to build a career in a merciless new economy, there were many less-heard critics aspiring to make the economy less merciless.”
Anand Giridharadas, Winners Take All: The Elite Charade of Changing the World

Steven Pinker
“By failing to take note of the gifts of modernity, social critics poison voters against responsible custodians and incremental reformers who can consolidate the tremendous progress we have enjoyed and strengthen the conditions that will bring us more.”
Steven Pinker, Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress

Mokokoma Mokhonoana
“The real function of some solutions is to create or perpetuate a problem.”
Mokokoma Mokhonoana

Mokokoma Mokhonoana
“A book can be read to you, not for you.”
Mokokoma Mokhonoana

Steven Pinker
“The observation that conflict is part of the human condition, banal though it is, contradicts fashionable beliefs.”
Steven Pinker, How the Mind Works

Mokokoma Mokhonoana
“Technological progression can lead to or be a sign of cultural regression.”
Mokokoma Mokhonoana

Mokokoma Mokhonoana
“With some things we are trying to solve some of the problems that are caused by some of the things with which we are trying to solve some of the problems that are caused by some things.”
Mokokoma Mokhonoana

Nancy Mitford
“Sure enough, standing with their backs to the hall fire, were Aunt Sadie, Aunt Emily, and a small, fair, and apparently young man. My immediate impression was that he did not seem at all like a husband. He looked kind and gentle.”
Nancy Mitford, The Pursuit of Love

Ryszard Kapuściński
“After all, what is a dollar but paper? A bullet can save your life. Bullets make weapons more significant, and that makes you more significant.

A man's life - what is that worth? Another man exists only to the degree that he stands in your way. Life doesn't mean much, but it's better to take it from the enemy before he has time to deliver a blow.”
Ryszard Kapuściński, The Emperor

Ryszard Kapuściński
“Usually it is said that periodic droughts cause bad crops and therefore starvation. But it is the elites of starving countries that propagate this idea. It is a false idea. The unjust or mistaken allocation of funds and national property is the most frequent source of hunger. There was a lot of grain in Ethiopia, but it had first been hidden by the rich and then thrown on the market at a doubled price, inaccessible to peasants and the poor.”
Ryszard Kapuściński, The Emperor

Mokokoma Mokhonoana
“We are often, if not usually, greeted mainly, or even merely, as an attempt to stop us from looking at the person greeting us, at least for a bit.”
Mokokoma Mokhonoana

Mokokoma Mokhonoana
“Getting something or someone we want is often a guaranteed way to eventually stop us from wanting it, him, or her.”
Mokokoma Mokhonoana

Mokokoma Mokhonoana
“Our cars are turning into smartphones with wheels.”
Mokokoma Mokhonoana

Mokokoma Mokhonoana
“Because of poverty, many a man who is not into men sometimes finds, or once found, himself inside a man.”
Mokokoma Mokhonoana

Scott C. Holstad
“violence is so american
violence is pretty girls
guns ‘n danger
rape, murder, ‘n mayhem
above all
eats us up
us out
tells us lies
we willingly believe”
Scott C. Holstad, Places

Scott C. Holstad
“i'm still waiting for someone to kick in the groove wake us up get the juices flowing and you know the shit gets more stale a little more square every day and we're diggin our own grave jumpin in head first and still we cry out for leaders to take us away start the groove over but the tunes are the same doesn't really matter where you start.”
Scott C. Holstad

Scott C. Holstad
“I woke last night from a nightmare in which I saw a malignant society of pathological liars racked with insecurities, consumed by guilt, screaming for violence and I noticed I was sweating most profusely as I thanked the heavens above that it was only a dream before turning on the light to get a cigarette.”
Scott C. Holstad

Scott C. Holstad
“anyway i saw it coming from the rooftops. they said the second coming was heading our way tomorrow’s world today force fed to us in a tobacco-colored spoon keep us entertained – content - oppressed. we prayed, friend, and they brought it down.”
Scott C. Holstad, Big Head Press Broadside Poem Collection

Scott C. Holstad
“feeling the fear
in mass murder

83-year-old woman
shot thru eye

convenience clerk
nothing taken
it’s pointless
junked out killer on
killing for
art’s sake

THIS is my art
judge me
Scott C. Holstad, Big Head Press Broadside Poem Collection

K.W. Jeter
“[...]; soon the day would come, if not already arrived, in which the privilege of being in any way disconnected from the rest of Humanity would be reserved only for the wealthy, who can purchase with their riches the isolation and quiet denied to us mere rabble.”
K.W. Jeter, Grim Expectations

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