Wednesday, October 11, 2006

In the ideal logotopia, every person would possess their own library, and add at least weekly, if not daily, to it. The walls of each home would seem made of books--wherever one looked, one would see only spines; because every real book (as opposed to dictionaries, almanacs, and other compilations) is a mind, an imagination, a consciousness. Together, they comprise a civilization, or even several. However, utopias have the bad habit of hiding in their hearts those schemes for success, those requirements of power, rules concerning conduct, which someone will one day have to carry forward, employ, and enforce in order to achieve them, and, afterward, to maintain the continued purity of their Being. Books have taught me what true dominion, what right rule is: It is like the freely given assent and labor of the reader who will dream the dreams of the deserving page and expect no more fee than the reward of its words.

--William H. Gass, A Temple of Texts

2 comments:

Stefanie said...

Great passage! I have been eyeing that book for weeks now wondering if I should read it. Are you enjoying it?

sfp said...

I've skipped around in it, looking for quotes and opinions on various books, but I think I'm going to return it to the library and postpone a more comprehensive read until later. I think you'd enjoy it, though. This was my first exposure to Gass and I definitely want more.