Tag Archives: Project Gutenberg

Reading List

Three classic books that are better than any of the movies: The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson (download) Frankenstein; Or, The Modern Prometheus by Mary Shelley (download) A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens (download) These three are all far more subtle than any movie interpretation I’ve seen.  The …

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We had still duties which we ought to perform…

In this excerpt from Frankenstein; Or, The Modern Prometheus by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, ©1818, young Victor Frankenstein mourns the death of his mother: She died calmly, and her countenance expressed affection even in death. I need not describe the feelings of those whose dearest ties are rent by that most irreparable evil, the void that …

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FWIW

“For what it’s worth:   it’s never too late or, in my case, too early, to be whoever you want to be. There’s no time limit, stop whenever you want. You can change or stay the same, there are no rules to this thing. We can make the best or the worst of it. I hope …

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Lens

“Of all forms of slavery there is none that is so harmful and degrading as that form of slavery which tempts one human being to hate another by reason of his race or color. One man cannot hold another man down in the ditch without remaining down in the ditch with him.”  ~Booker T. Washington …

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The Most Materialistic Age

In this excerpt from Winesburg, Ohio, published almost a century ago in 1919, Sherwood Anderson predicts the future with a depressing degree of accuracy: That is what Jesse hungered for and then also he hungered for something else. He had grown into maturity in America in the years after the Civil War and he, like …

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Me and Sherwood and Billy Pilgrim

From Malcom Cowley’s introduction to the Penguin Classic’s edition of Sherwood Anderson’s Windesburg Ohio, © 1919: One characteristic of the subconscious is a defective sense of time: in dreams the old man sees himself as a boy, and the events of thirty or forty years may be jumbled together. Time as a logical succession of …

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Not so vile as

“Self-love, my liege, is not so vile a sin as self-neglecting.” Dauphin, in William Shakespeare’s The Life of King Henry the Fifth, Act 2 Scene 3

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And Then I’d

“Why must people kneel down to pray? If I really wanted to pray I’ll tell you what I’d do. I’d go out into a great big field all alone or in the deep, deep woods and I’d look up into the sky– up– up– up– into that lovely blue sky that looks as if there …

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Make Britain Great Again!

Excerpt from Around the World in 80 Days by Jules Verne, ©1873: Hong Kong is an island which came into the possession of the English by the treaty of Nankin, after the war of 1842; and the colonizing genius of the English has created upon it an important city and excellent port…  Hong Kong seemed …

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Corruption With A Growl

Excerpted from Jacob Riis’ autobiography, The Making of an American, ©1901: You bring up the people slowly to a reform programme, particularly when it costs money. They will pay for corruption with a growl, but seem to think that virtue ought always to be had for nothing. It makes the politicians’ game easy. They steal …

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Let In the Light

Jacob Riis on faith: I had the feeling, and have it still, that if you are trying to do the things which are right, and which you were put here to do, you can and ought to leave ways and means to Him who drew the plans, after you have done your own level best …

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“Joyless children do not make good men.”

One of the causes Jacob Riis championed was building playgrounds for New York’s children: I wanted the sunlight in there, but so that it might shine on the children at play. That is a child’s right, and it is not to be cheated of it. And when it is cheated of it, it is not …

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