Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Marquis de Condorcet

The Marquis de Condorcet whom I quoted in my last post also wrote a pamphlet on the equality of women in about 1787. He is a key figure in the Enlightenment and seems to be almost completely forgotten. Here I am 72 years old, a freethinker, formerly active in women's rights and I never heard of him. But now every time Eliot says "it's human nature" when I get upset about another shortcoming of the human race I come back with the Condorcet quote "social evils are the result of ignorance and error rather than the inevitable consequence of human nature."
Does ignorance and error cover greed and pride and the thirst for power and whatever other "deadly sins" are hanging around. Why do enlightened sentient beings end up in prison or assasinated? Why is progress associated with growth and when did acquiring "wealth" become the end all?
If I think about Haiti or politics my grip on sanity starts to weaken .
So I think I'll become a one woman campaign to get Condorcet recognized and taught in woman studies classes and read all of Kurt Vonnegut. I have no idea how to to the first thing but I do know how to rserve books at the Phoenix library. However, I had a fortune cookie in a Chinese buffet yesterday that said I would have a pleasant trip to a faraway place. Does that mean I'm going to Alaska or the Thanisphere (refer to short story by Vonnegut in Bagombo Nuff Box).
And so it goes.


  1. Spreading Condorcet's fame seems to me like a worthy cause. Go for it!
    I must admit to never having read Vonnegut. I'll have to remedy that.

  2. I could never read Vonnegut, though heaven knows I did try.
    The Marquis sounds like a cause worth pursuing.
    I've had to stay away from politics as I was constantly in a state of helpless rage.
    I need to tend to my own backyard. Haiti is beyond belief and most assistance is being run by catastrophically inept morons.