esteven: (Default)
[personal profile] esteven posting in [community profile] where_away
With the revolution in France gone to pure loss I was already chilled beyond expression. And now, with what I saw in '98, on both sides, the wicked folly and the wicked brute cruelty, I have had such a sickening of men in masses, and of causes, that I would not cross this room to reform parliament or prevent the union or to bring about the millennium. I speak only for myself, mind - it is my own truth alone - but man as part of a movement or a crowd is indifferent to me. He is inhuman. And I have nothing to do with nations, or nationalism. The only feelings I have -for what they are - are for men as individuals; my loyalties, such as they may be, are to private persons alone.'
'Patriotism will not do?'
'My dear creature, I have done with all debate. But you know as well as I, patriotism is a word; and one that generally comes to mean either my country, right or wrong, which is infamous, or my country is always right, which is imbecile.'

(chapter five)

Date: 2012-08-11 06:51 pm (UTC)
sid: (m&c Stephen cello)
From: [personal profile] sid
I like his definition of "patriotism" there at the end. That has been the way it works here in America at times, sadly.

Date: 2012-08-11 08:41 pm (UTC)
feroxargentea: (Default)
From: [personal profile] feroxargentea
The reaction, in post-war/post-imperial countries, can be such a horror of jingoism that it becomes "my country can never be right"
*shrugs* Probably better than Stephen's infamy/imbecility, still.