The Grinding Shed: Hannah Arendt - The Grinding Shed

Jump to content

Page 1 of 1
  • You cannot start a new topic
  • You cannot reply to this topic

Hannah Arendt

#1 User is offline   Johann Icon

  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 303
  • Joined: 27-August 07
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Berlin

Posted 11 January 2019 - 08:57 AM

Attached File  Arendt-Hannah.jpg (46.93K)
Number of downloads: 1

https://en.wikipedia...i/Hannah_Arendt

I always wanted to read books of her but never got around to it until I found "Ursprünge und Elemente totaler Herrschaft" on the street.. with newspaper clippings about her tucked between the pages. It blew my mind, and since then I read a bunch of books by her, and though I would have to read all of them again several times to really understand and remember half of it, I can recommend pretty much anything that has her name on it, to put it very mildly. Can't put it other than mildly because there are no words for how much I adore this woman, and how grateful I am for even just what little I could glance of her writings.

Here's some quotes, timely as ever:

Hannah Arendt said:

If the totalitarian conqueror conducts himself everywhere as though he were at home, by the same token he must treat his own population as though he were a foreign conqueror.


Hannah Arendt said:

For the idea of humanity, when purged of all sentimentality, has the very serious consequence that in one form or another men must assume responsibility for all crimes committed by men and that all nations share the onus of evil committed by all others. Shame at being a human being is the purely individual and still non-political exp​ression of this insight.


Hannah Arendt said:

When all are guilty, no one is; confessions of collective guilt are the best possible safeguard against the discovery of culprits, and the very magnitude of the crime the best excuse for doing nothing.


Hannah Arendt said:

Caution in handling generally accepted opinions that claim to explain whole trends of history is especially important for the historian of modern times, because the last century has produced an abundance of ideologies that pretend to be keys to history but are actually nothing but desperate efforts to escape responsibility.


Hannah Arendt said:

Forgiveness is the key to action and freedom.


Hannah Arendt said:

The possible redemption from the predicament of irreversibility - of being unable to undo what one has done - is the faculty of forgiving. The remedy for unpredictability, for the chaotic uncertainty of the future, is contained in the faculty to make and keep promises. Both faculties depend upon plurality, on the presence and acting of others, for no man can forgive himself and no one can be bound by a promise made only to himself.


Hannah Arendt said:

There are many great authors of the past who have survived centuries of oblivion and neglect, but it is still an open question whether they will be able to survive an entertaining version of what they have to say.


Hannah Arendt said:

There are no dangerous thoughts; thinking itself is dangerous.


Hannah Arendt said:

The aim of totalitarian education has never been to instill convictions but to destroy the capacity to form any.


Hannah Arendt said:

Education is the point at which we decide whether we love the world enough to assume responsibility for it, and by the same token save it from that ruin which except for renewal, except for the coming of the new and the young, would be inevitable. And education, too, is where we decide whether we love our children enough not to expel them from our world and leave them to their own devices, nor to strike from their hands their chance of undertaking something new, something unforeseen by us, but to prepare them in advance for the task of renewing a common world.

This post has been edited by Johann: 11 January 2019 - 08:59 AM

0

#2 User is offline   Johann Icon

  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 303
  • Joined: 27-August 07
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Berlin

Posted 11 January 2019 - 09:00 AM

Hannah Arendt said:

As citizens, we must prevent wrongdoing because the world in which we all live, wrong-doer, wrong sufferer and spectator, is at stake.


Hannah Arendt said:

I'm more than ever of the opinion that a decent human existence is possible today only on the fringes of society, where one then runs the risk of starving or being stoned to death. In these circumstances, a sense of humor is a great help.


Hannah Arendt said:

Courage is indispensible because in politics not life but the world is at stake.


Hannah Arendt said:

Factuality itself depends for its continued existence upon the existence of the nontotalitarian world.


Hannah Arendt said:

The ideals of homo faber, the fabricator of the world, which are permanence, stability, and durability, have been sacrificed to abundance, the ideal of the animal laborans.


Hannah Arendt said:

Under the most diverse conditions and disparate circumstances, we watch the development of the same phenomena—homelessness on an unprecedented scale, rootlessness to an unprecedented depth.


Hannah Arendt said:

Never has our future been more unpredictable, never have we depended so much on political forces that cannot be trusted to follow the rules of common sense and self-interest—forces that look like sheer insanity, if judged by the standards of other centuries.


Hannah Arendt said:

It can be hidden only in complete silence and perfect passivity, but its disclosure can almost never be achieved as a willful purpose, as though one possessed and could dispose of this "who" in the same manner he has and can dispose of his qualities. On the contrary, it is more than likely that the "who," which appears so clearly and unmistakably to others, remains hidden from the person himself, like the daimon in Greek religion which accompanies each man throughout his life, always looking over his shoulder from behind and thus visible only to those he encounters. This revelatory quality of speech and action comes to the fore where people are with others and neither for (the doer of good works) nor against them (the criminal) that is, in sheer human togetherness. Although nobody knows whom he reveals when he discloses himself in deed or word, he must be willing to risk the disclosure.


Hannah Arendt said:

There are more than a few people, especially among the cultural élite, who still publicly regret the fact that Germany sent Einstein packing, without realizing that it was a much greater crime to kill little Hans Cohn from around the corner, even though he was no genius.


Hannah Arendt said:

If the ability to tell right from wrong should have anything to do with the ability to think, then we must be able to "demand" its exercise in every sane person no matter how erudite or ignorant.

0

#3 User is offline   Johann Icon

  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 303
  • Joined: 27-August 07
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Berlin

Posted 11 January 2019 - 09:01 AM

Hannah Arendt said:

Now the police dreams that one look at the gigantic map on the office wall should suffice at any given moment to establish who is related to whom and in what degree of intimacy; and, theoretically, this dream is not unrealizable although its technical execution is bound to be somewhat difficult. If this map really did exist, not even memory would stand in the way of the totalitarian claim to domination; such a map might make it possible to obliterate people without any traces, as if they had never existed at all.


Hannah Arendt said:

Since no one is capable of forming his own opinion without the benefit of a multitude of opinions held by others, the rule of public opinion endangers even the opinion of those few who may have the strength not to share it. This is one of the reasons for the curiously sterile negativism of all opinions which oppose a popularly acclaimed tyranny. [...] public opinion, by virtue of its unanimity, provokes a unanimous opposition and thus kills true opinions everywhere.


Hannah Arendt said:

Hobbes was the true, though never fully recognized, philosopher of the bourgeoisie because he realized that acquisition of wealth conceived as a never-ending process can be guaranteed only by the seizure of political power, for the accumulating process must sooner or later force open all existing territorial limits. He foresaw that a society which had entered the path of never-ending acquisition had to engineer a dynamic political organization capable of a corresponding never-ending process of power generation. He even, through sheer force of imagination, was able to outline the main psychological traits of the new type of man who would fit into such a society and its tyrannical body politic. He foresaw the necessary idolatry of power itself by this new human type, that he would be flattered at being called a power-thirsty animal, although actually society would force him to surrender all his natural forces, his virtues and his vices, and would make him the poor meek little fellow who has not even the right to rise against tyranny, and who, far from striving for power, submits to any existing government and does not stir even when his best friend falls an innocent victim to an incomprehensible raison d'etat.


Hannah Arendt said:

Humans, in so far as they are more than a completion of functions able to react, whose lowest and therefore most central are the purely animal like reactions, are simply superfluous for totalitarian systems. Their goal is not to erect a despotic regime over humans, but a system by which humans are made superfluous. Total power can only be achieved and guaranteed when nothing else matters except the absolutely controllable willingness to react, marionettes robbed of all spontaneity. Humans, precisely because they are so powerful, can only be completely controlled when they have become examples of the animal like species human.


Hannah Arendt said:

We don't know a perfected totalitarian power structure, because it would require the control of the whole planet. But we know enough about the the still preliminary experiments of total organization to realize that the very well possible perfection of this apparatus would get rid of human agency in the sense as we know it. To act would turn out to be superfluous for people living together, when all people have become an example of their species, when all doing has become an acceleration of the movement mechanism of history or nature following a set pattern, and all deeds have become the execution of death sentences which history and nature have given anyway.


Hannah Arendt said:

The frightening coincidence of the modern population explosion with the discovery of technical devices that, through automation, will make large sections of the population 'superfluous' even in terms of labor, and that, through nuclear energy, make it possible to deal with this twofold threat by the use of instruments beside which Hitler's gassing installations look like an evil child's fumbling toys, should be enough to make us tremble.


Hannah Arendt said:

From a philosophical viewpoint, the danger inherent in the new reality of mankind seems to be that this unity, based on the technical means of communication and violence, destroys all national traditions and buries the authentic origins of all human existence. This destructive process can even be considered a necessary prerequisite for ultimate understanding between men of all cultures, civilizations, races, and nations. Its result would be a shallowness that would transform man, as we have known him in five thousand years of recorded history, beyond recognition. It would be more than mere superficiality; it would be as though the whole dimension of depth, without which human thought, even on the mere level of technical invention, could not exist, would simply disappear. This leveling down would be much more radical than the leveling to the lowest common denominator; it would ultimately arrive at a denominator of which we have hardly any notion today.

As long as one conceives of truth as separate and distinct from its exp​ression, as something which by itself is uncommunicative and neither communicates itself to reason nor appeals to "existential" experience, it is almost impossible not to believe that this destructive process will inevitably be triggered off by the sheer automatism of technology which made the world one and, in a sense, united mankind. It looks as though the historical pasts of the-nations, in their utter diversity and disparity, in their confusing variety and bewildering strangeness for each other, are nothing but obstacles on the road to a horridly shallow unity. This, of course, is a delusion; if the dimension of depth out of which modern science and technology have developed ever were destroyed, the probability is that the new unity of mankind could not even technically survive. Everything then seems to depend upon the possibility of bringing the national pasts, in their original disparateness, into communication with each other as the only way to catch up with the global system of communication which covers the surface of the earth.

0

#4 User is offline   Alexander Icon

  • Group: Admin
  • Posts: 3,075
  • Joined: 13-June 02
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Your girlfriend's thoughts
  • Your fuckin' daddy

Posted 11 January 2019 - 10:30 PM

How have I never heard of this person before now? Thanks for sharing Johann.
It's not the houses, it's the spaces between the houses.
akpcep.com - Everything | alexanderking.co - Me
0

#5 User is offline   Johann Icon

  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 303
  • Joined: 27-August 07
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Berlin

Posted 12 January 2019 - 01:03 PM

You're most welcome :smiling:

Here's a talk about her and her work which I liked lots:

Hannah Arendt on thinking and the political

Attached File(s)


This post has been edited by Johann: 12 January 2019 - 01:04 PM

0

Page 1 of 1
  • You cannot start a new topic
  • You cannot reply to this topic

2 User(s) are reading this topic
0 members, 2 guests, 0 anonymous users