"Claustropolis or Cosmopolis? A society of enforced seclusion or a society of forcible control? Actually, the dilemma itself seems illusory, with the temporal compression of instantaneity and the ubiquity of the age of the information revolution." - Paul Virilio, The Original Accident (Cambridge, 2007), 68 (text compressed)
"Wind is a rush of air which changes its name as it changes place." - Mansur, aka John of Damascus, De Fide Orthodoxa II 8
This has a weirdly contemporary feel. "Of the future both the angels & demons are alike ignorant; yet they make predictions." - Mansur, aka John of Damascus, De Fide Orthodoxa II 4
"He fought not only for himself, but clearly for other powers as well which he did not know, but in which, without infringing the regulations of the authorities, he was permitted to believe." - Franz Kafka, The Castle, chapter 5
"My old teacher [Albrecht] Ritschl once said that I drafted even my philology articles like a Parisian novelist - absurdly gripping." - F. Nietzsche, "Why I Write Such Good Books", Ecce Homo: How to Become What You Are (1888)
Am I seeing things? 1595 engraving of Lucifer in an edition of Dante's Inferno; 1651 title page of Hobbes's Leviathan.
"It's amazing what those that can do anything can't do." - Victor Hugo, via Paul Virilio, The Original Accident (2007), 32
"You know better than me the unfortunate fate of this word 'normalization'. What is not normalization? I normalize, you normalize, and so on." Michel Foucault, Security, Territory, Population, Collège de France, 25 January 1978
I have an essay on Nietzsche, Socrates and Jesus – with a glance at Dostoevsky – on pages 8-9 of La Lettura (no. 451) in today's Corriere della Sera (19 July 2020). Translated by a brilliant young scholar, Matteo Stettler.
"That which we see today is the sign of the past." - Basil of Caesarea, Homilies on the Hexaemeron 7, 1