Thursday, November 02, 2017

First Paragraph

The cell door slammed behind Rubashov.

- From Darkness at Noon by Arthur Koestler

2 Comments:

At 1:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I read this some years ago, and it seemed to show pretty clearly what most people think communism or socialism is going to get them: a better position in the hierarchy than they currently have. Rubashov was tormented more or less because he'd fallen from the Inner Party into useful idiot status, and his only remaining use was to confess. It didn't seem to matter much what the confession entailed, it was a showpiece, performance art if you will.

Darkness at Noon
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Darkness_at_Noon
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arthur_Koestler

A recently stumbled across observation on socialism:
Socialism debunked in two sentences.
1. All of the socialists could meet up, gather all of their wealth together and then divide it equally between themselves.
2. This has never happened.
http://stuff-that-irks-me.tumblr.com/post/166608443876

Recently I've been reading Viktor Frankl's Man's Search for Meaning, another tale of a prisoner but from quite a different perspective.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Man's_Search_for_Meaning
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Viktor_Frankl
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/4069.Man_s_Search_for_Meaning

Jim

 
At 6:46 AM, Blogger Michael Wade said...

Jim,

I love the story about the socialists.

Viktor Frankl's book is extraordinary.

Koestler's novel reminds me of Daniel Moynihan's definition of democratic socialism: "Mindless obedience." At the same time, the Communists did not demand mere obedience. Any dictatorship requires that. They demanded belief.

Michael

 

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