“Reading is important because it makes you look down, an expression of shame. When the page is shifted to a vertical plane, it becomes an advertisement, decree, and/or image of a missing pet or child. We say that texts displayed vertically are addressed to the public, while in fact, by failing to teach us the humility a common life requires, they convene a narcissistic mass. When you window-shop, when you shatter a store window, you see your own image in the glass.”—Ben Lerner, Angle of Yaw
“We seldom realize, that our most private thoughts and emotions are not actually our own. For we think in terms of languages and images which we did not invent, but which were given to us by our society.”—Alan Wilson Watts
"The American presents a strange picture: a European with Negro behavior and an Indian soul. He shares the fate of all usurpers of foreign soil.
Certain Australian primitives assert that one cannot conquer foreign soil, because in it there dwell strange ancestor-spirits who reincarnate themselves in the newborn.
There is a great psycho-logical truth in this. The foreign land assimilates its conqueror…
Thus, in the American, there is a discrepancy between conscious and unconscious that is not found in the European, a tension between an extremely high conscious level of culture and an unconscious primi-tivity…
Alienation from the unconscious and from its historical conditions spells rootlessness. That is the danger that lies in wait for the conqueror of foreign lands, and for every individual who … loses touch with the dark, maternal, earthy ground of his being.”