A case for nothing

Many have questioned the constant striving toward work and money, but few have laid those arguments in such elegant prose.

From a 2004 Harper’s essay:

“What we’re leaving behind today, at record pace, is what­ever belief we might once have had in the value of unstructured time: in the privilege of contemplating our lives before they are gone, in the importance of uninterrupted conversation, in the beauty of play. In the thing in itself – unmediated, leading nowhere. In the present moment.”

… which echoes a 1932 essay by Bertrand Russell:

“There was formerly a capacity for light-heartedness and play which has been to some extent inhibited by the cult of efficiency. The modern man thinks that everything ought to be done for the sake of something else, and never for its own sake.”

#goodwriting

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