Perhaps, all these years, the historiographers had been unwilling to recognize history as a spiral, perhaps because a spiral was so difficult to describe. Easier to photograph the spiral from the top, easier to flatten the spring into a coil.
Well, then she had to be tolchoked proper with one of the weights for the scales, and then a fair tap with a crowbar they had for opening cases, and that brought out red like an old friend. So we had her down on the floor and a rip of her platties for fun and a gentle bit of the boot to stop her moaning.
Even trashy bestsellers show people changing. When a fictional work fails to show change, when it merely indicates that human character is set, stony, unregenerable, then you are out of the field of the novel and into that of the fable or the allegory.
It is for the reader to see in the book the nature of the motives of human actions and perhaps learn something too of the motives behind the social forces which judge those actions and which, I take it, we call a system of morality.
Why are we fighting? We're fighting because we're soldiers. That's simple enough, isn't it? For what cause are we fighting? Simple again. We're fighting to protect our country, and, in a wider sense, the whole of the English-Speaking Union. From whom? No concern of ours. Where? Wherever we're sent. Now, Foxe, I trust all this is perfectly clear.
I enjoy journalism; anybody does. You see the results immediately; you've got an immediate audience instead of having to wait for your audience as you do if you're writing a book, and you get a bit of money coming in, and you can see more clearly how you're paying the bills. But it's not a good position for the serious novelist to be in.
Destruction, best expressed in this age in which I write as terrorism, is truly there for its own sake, but the pretense of religion or secular patriotism converts the destructive into the speciously creative.
What's on them, I wonder. What would be up there on things like that?' I nudged him hard, saying: ‘Come, gloopy bastard as thou art. Think thou not on them. There'll be life like down here most likely, with some getting knifed and others doing the knifing.
Badness is of the self, the one, the you or me on our oddy knockies, and that self is made by old Bog or God and is his great pride and radosty. But the not-self cannot have the bad, meaning they of the government and the judges and the schools cannot allow the bad because they cannot allow the self.
And I sort of frowned about that, thinking. 'You felt ill this afternoon,' he said, 'because you're getting better. When we're healthy we respond to the presence of the hateful with fear and nausea. You're becoming healthy, that's all.
Self-interest, fear of physical pain, drove him to that grotesque act of self-abasement. Its insincerity was clearly to be seen. He ceases to be a wrongdoer. He ceases also to be a creature capable of moral choice.
Look, I don't see why bad artists - I mean artists who are obviously incompetent... - why they should be presented hypocritically as good artists just because they're supposed to be advancing the frontiers of freedom of expression or... ...demonstrating that there should be no limit on subject matter.