Monday, November 04, 2013

The Connection

"You said that we owe literature almost everything we are and what we have been. If books disappear, history will disappear, and human beings will also disappear. I am sure you are right. Books are not only the arbitrary sum of our dreams, and our memory. They also give us the model of self-transcendence. Some people think of reading only as a kind of escape: an escape from the "real" everyday world to an imaginary world, the world of books. Books are much more. They are a way of being fully human." 

 Susan Sontag
 "A Letter to Borges"
quoted by Jonathan Cott in his new book, Susan Sontag: The Complete Rolling Stone Interview (Yale.)

 photo from Truffaut's film version of Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451

They connect us to the past, to the many dimensions of our past, and to the future, by which the past is given meaning beyond itself.  They connect the unknown, the hidden and even furtive parts of ourselves to the many dimensions of our world, and of the universe, in the present.  They make connections, which is the very life of the mind...  Some ways of being more fully human.