enormousair:

vintageanchor:

“Culture is not just an ornament; it is the expression of a nation’s character, and at the same time it is a powerful instrument to mould character. The end of culture is right living.” — W. Somerset Maugham 

I find this idea both true and ominous. Culture can help teach us how to live well, but it can also narrow our minds and our lives. It does that when it becomes propaganda, when it causes us to uncritically accept an unnaturally constricted notion of what qualifies as a good life. To talk about right living (rightly defined) is the right conversation to be having, but it’s an inquiry fraught with danger. Any notion of “right living” all too easily morphs into a moralizing, totalitizing agenda. And culture can do damage just as easily as it does good.

enormousair:

vintageanchor:

“Culture is not just an ornament; it is the expression of a nation’s character, and at the same time it is a powerful instrument to mould character. The end of culture is right living.”
— W. Somerset Maugham

I find this idea both true and ominous. Culture can help teach us how to live well, but it can also narrow our minds and our lives. It does that when it becomes propaganda, when it causes us to uncritically accept an unnaturally constricted notion of what qualifies as a good life. To talk about right living (rightly defined) is the right conversation to be having, but it’s an inquiry fraught with danger. Any notion of “right living” all too easily morphs into a moralizing, totalitizing agenda. And culture can do damage just as easily as it does good.

(Source: vintageanchorbooks)