Panic Bewilderment

Panic At The Library

Brian Michael Murphy | Lapham's Quarterly | 24th August 2022

The creation of public libraries in the US occurred alongside the so-called "social hygiene movement", which aimed — among other things — to encourage spiritual purity via bodily cleanliness. Books that were shared with the "great unwashed" must thus be cleansed. Sterilisation via gas chamber for books became the norm in the early 20C, as fears over disease and pests ramped up (2,337 words)

In Praise Of Bewilderment

Alan Levinovitz | Hedgehog Review | 24th August 2022

To cultivate a more flexible mindset, it is necessary to abandon certainty for bewilderment. Seeking out questions that are "above our pay grade" is difficult but rewarding. "There is, I admit, an initial shock to the system, like when you jump into a frigid lake. But the shock doesn’t last. It quickly gives way to relief, even comfort." This is a worldview that better reflects reality, it is argued (1,746 words)

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