AMERICAN NERVOUSNESS: ITS CAUSES AND CONSEQUENCES (A supplement to “Nervous exhaustion: Neurasthenia”) – George Beard, 1881.

-Um glamouroso retrato da decadência ocidental, embora ingenuamente otimista quanto a ele e de um ultimado chauvinismo ianque!-

Nervousness is strictly deficiency or lack of nerve-force. This condition, together with all the symptoms of diseases that are evolved from it, has developed mainly within the 19th century, and is especially frequent and severe in the Northern and Eastern portions of the United States. Nervousness, in the sense here used, is to be distinguished rigidly and systematically from simple excess of emotion and from organic disease.”

The sign and type of functional nervous diseases that are evolved out of this general nerve sensitiveness is neurasthenia (nervous exhaustion), which is in close and constant relation with such functional nerve maladies as certain physical forms of hysteria, hay-fever [rinite alérgica], sick-headache, inebriety, and some phases of insanity; is, indeed, a branch whence at early or later stages of growth these diseases may take their origin.”

The greater prevalence of nervousness in America is a complex resultant of a number of influences, the chief of which are dryness of the air, extremes of heat and cold, civil and religious liberty, and the great mental activity made necessary and possible in a new and productive country under such climatic conditions.

A new crop of diseases has sprung up in America, of which Great Britain until lately knew nothing, or but little. A class of functional diseases of the nervous system, now beginning to be known everywhere in civilization, seem to have first taken root under an American sky, whence their seed is being distributed.

All this is modern, and originally American; and no age, no country, and no form of civilization, not Greece, nor Rome, nor Spain, nor the Netherlands, in the days of their glory, possessed such maladies.” Not in their glories, that is.

to solve it in all its interlacings, to unfold its marvellous phenomena and trace them back to their sources and forward to their future developments, is to solve the problem of sociology itself.” [!!!]

Among the signs of American nervousness specially worthy of attention are the following: The nervous diathesis [degenerescência genética, i.e., uma suposta maior vulnerabilidade a doenças dos nervos decorrente da debilidade dos progenitores]; susceptibility to stimulants and narcotics and various drugs, and consequent necessity of temperance¹ [e ainda chama essa abordagem de sociológica sem levar em conta o fator cultural?]; increase of the nervous diseases inebriety [alcoolismo ou uma ligeira variação deste – suscetibilidade exagerada –, que o autor diferenciará no segundo capítulo] and neurasthenia (nervous exhaustion), hay-fever, neuralgia [dor crônica nas terminações nervosas], nervous dyspepsia [indigestão], asthenopia [fadiga ocular e dores de cabeça derivadas] and allied diseases and symptoms [bem específico…]; early and rapid decay of teeth [já fez seu Amil Dental?]; premature baldness; sensitiveness to cold and heat; increase of diseases not exclusively nervous, as diabetes and certain forms of Bright’s disease of the kidneys and chronic catarrhs; unprecedented beauty of American women; frequency of trance and muscle-reading [a tênue linha entre a paranormalidade e simples efeitos de indução eletromagnética]; the strain of dentition, puberty, and change of life; American oratory, humor [haha!], speech, and language; change in type of disease during the past half-century, and the greater intensity of animal life on this continent. [???]

¹ Ah, obviamente Sêneca e Epicuro concordariam contigo!

longevity has increased, and in all ages brain-workers have, on the average, been long-lived, the very greatest geniuses being the longest-lived of all.” “the law of the relation of age to work, by which it is shown that original brain-work is done mostly in youth and early and middle life, the latter decades being reserved for work requiring simply experience and routine.” Pequena confusão entre decaimento fisiológico e e incorporação da experiência como forma de reduzir o esforço mental!

Poetas românticos não usavam a cabeça? Pois sua efemeridade é mais-que-popular…

in all our cyclopedias of medicine, the terms hysteria, somnambulism, ecstasy, catalepsy, mimicry of disease, spinal congestion, incipient ataxy, epilepsy, spasms and congestions, anemias and hyperemias, alcoholism, spinal irritation, spinal exhaustion, cerebral paresis, cerebral exhaustion and irritation, nervousness and imagination [!] are thrown together recklessly, confusedly, hopelessly as in a witches cauldron; and in all, and through all, one shall look vainly—save here and there, for an intelligent and differential description of neurasthenia, the most frequent, the most important, the most interesting nervous disease of our time, or of any time

still our medical graduates, after years spent in listening to lectures, must wait for their diploma before they are even ready to begin the study of this side of the nervous system. Meantime the literature of ataxia [desarranjo da coordenação motora], which is but an atom compared with the world of functional nervous diseases, has risen and is yet rising with infinite repetitions and revolutions to volumes and volumes.”

So far as I know, there has been no hostile criticism of this philosophy in Germany, but in England, even now, these views are not unanimously sustained.” Nazistas retesados.

1. NATURE AND DEFINITION OF NERVOUSNESS

Trance, with its numerous, interesting and intricate phenomena, a condition that has been known in all ages, and among almost all people, is not nervousness, albeit nervous people are sometimes subject to it. See my work on Trance [não muito interessado, mas obrigado assim mesmo!], in which this distinction between physiology and psychology is discussed more fully and variously illustrated.” “This interesting survival of the Middle Ages that we have right here with us today, is the most forcible single illustration that I know of, of the distinction between unbalanced mental organization and nervousness. These Jumpers are precious curiosities, relics or antiques that the 14th century has, as it were, dropped right into the middle of the 19th. The phenomena of the Jumpers are as interesting, scientifically, as any phenomena can be, but they aren’t contributions to American nervousness.

Brainlessness (excess of emotion over intellect) is, indeed, to nervousness, what idiocy is to insanity”

Nervousness is not passionateness. A person who easily gets excited or angry, is often called nervous. One of the signs, and in some cases, one of the first signs of real nervousness, is mental irritability, a disposition to become fretted over trifles; but in a majority of instances, passionate persons are healthy—their exhibitions of anger are the expression of normal emotions, and not in any sense evidences of disease, although they may be made worse by disease, either functional or organic. Nervousness is nervelessness—a lack of nerve-force.” “In medical science we are forced to retain terminology that is in the last degree unscientific, for the same reason that we retain our orthography, which in the English language is, as all know, very bad indeed.” <Febre da grama> realmente não é muito literal!

fear of lightning, or fear of responsibility, of open places or of closed places, fear of society, fear of being alone, fear of fears, fear of contamination, fear of everything, deficient mental control, lack of decision in trifling matters, hopelessness, deficient thirst and capacity for assimilating fluids, abnormalities of the secretions, salivation, tenderness of the spine, and of the whole body, sensitiveness to cold or hot water, sensitiveness to changes in the weather, coccyodynia, pains in the back, heaviness of the loins and limbs, shooting pains simulating those of ataxia, cold hands and feet, pain in the feet, localized peripheral numbness and hypersesthesia, tremulous and variable pulse and palpitation of the heart, special idiosyncrasies in regard to food, medicines, and external irritants, local spasms of muscles, difficulty of swallowing, convulsive movements, especially on going to sleep, cramps [cãibras ou cólicas], a feeling of profound exhaustion unaccompanied by positive pain, coming and going, ticklishness [hiperdelicadeza ou sensibilidade; em sentido mais estrito, facilidade para sentir comichão ou cócegas], vague pains and flying neuralgias, general or local itching, general and local chills and flashes of heat [calafrios e ondas de calor esporádicos], attacks of temporary paralysis, pain in the perineum, involuntary emissions, partial or complete impotence, irritability of the prostatic urethra, certain functional diseases of women [vague!], excessive gaping and yawning [bocejar exagerado], rapid decay and irregularities of the teeth, oxalates, urates, phosphates and spermatozoa in the urine, vertigo or dizziness, explosions in the brain at the back of the neck [?!], dribbling and incontinence of urine [incontinência urinária e seu reverso, alternados], frequent urination, choreic movements of different parts of the body, trembling of the muscles or portions of the muscles in different parts of the body, exhaustion after defecation and urination, dryness of the hair, falling away of the hair and beard, slow reaction of the skin, etc. Dr. Neisser, of Breslau, while translating my work on Nervous Exhaustion into German, wrote me that the list of symptoms was not exhaustive. This criticism is at once accepted, and was long ago anticipated. An absolutely exhaustive catalogue of the manifestations of the nervously exhausted state cannot be prepared, since every case differs somewhat from every other case.”

There are millionnaires of nerve-force—those who never know what it is to be tired out, or feel that their energies are expended, who can write, preach, or work with their hands many hours, without ever becoming fatigued, who do not know by personal experience what the term <exhaustion> means; and there are those—and their numbers are increasing daily—who, without being absolutely sick, without being, perhaps for a lifetime, ever confined to the bed a day with acute disorder, are yet very poor in nerve-force; their inheritance is small, and they have been able to increase it but slightly, if at all; and if from overtoil, or sorrow, or injury, they overdraw their little surplus, they may find that it will require months or perhaps years to make up the deficiency, if, indeed they ever accomplish the task. The man with a small income is really rich, as long as there is no overdraft on the account; so the nervous man may be really well and in fair working order as long as he does not draw on his limited store of nerve-force. But a slight mental disturbance, unwonted toil or exposure, anything out of and beyond his usual routine, even a sleepless night, may sweep away that narrow margin, and leave him in nervous bankruptcy, from which he finds it as hard to rise as from financial bankruptcy.”

Hence we see that neurasthenics who can pursue without any special difficulty the callings of their lives, even those callings requiring great and prolonged activity, amid perhaps very considerable excitement, as that of statesmanship, politics, business, commercial life, or in overworked professions, are prostrated at once when they are called upon to do something outside of their line, where their force must travel by paths that have never been opened and in which the obstructions are numerous and can only be overcome by greater energy than they can supply.” The purpose of treatment in cases of nervous exhaustion is of a two-fold character— to widen the margin of nerve-force, and to teach the patient how to keep from slipping over the edge.”

Our title is justified by this, that if once we understand the causes and consequences of American nervousness, the problems connected with the nervousness of other lands speedily solve themselves.” The philosophy of Germany has penetrated to all civilized nations; in all directions we are becoming Germanized. Similarly, the nervousness of America is extending over Europe, which, in certain countries, at least, is becoming rapidly Americanized. Just as it is impossible to treat of German thought without intelligent reference to the thought of other nationalities, ancient or modern, so is it impossible to solve the problem of American nervousness without taking into our estimate the nervousness of other lands and ages. [Acaba de contradizer o grifado em verde!]”

O REVERSO DA MEDALHA

Indeed, nervousness, in its extreme manifestations, seems to save one from these organic incurable diseases of the brain and of the cord; with some exceptions here and there, the neurasthenic does not go into or die of nervous disease.” They may become insane—some of them do; they may become bed-confined invalids; they may be forced, as they often are, to resign their occupations, but they do not, as rule, develop the structural maladies to which here refer.” nervousness is a physical not a mental state, and its phenomena do not come from emotional excess or excitability or from organic disease but from nervous debility and irritability.”

2. SIGNS OF AMERICAN NERVOUSNESS

No one dies of spinal irritation; no one dies of cerebral irritation; no one dies of hay-fever; rarely one dies of hysteria; no one dies of general neuralgia; no one dies of sick-headache; no one dies of nervous dyspepsia; quite rarely does one die of nervous exhaustion; and even when these conditions are the cause of death they are not noted as such in the tables of mortality” Nervousness of constitution is, indeed, an aid to longevity, and in various ways; it compels caution, makes imperative the avoidance of evil habits, and early warns us of the approach of peril.” Wickedness was solemnly assigned as the cause of the increase of nervous diseases, as though wickedness were a modern discovery.” nervous diathesis—an evolution of the nervous temperament.” “It includes those temperaments, commonly designated as nervous, in whom there exists a predisposition to neuralgia, dyspepsia, chorea, sick-headache, functional paralysis, hysteria, hypochondriasis, insanity, or other of the many symptoms of disease of the central or peripheral nervous system.”

A fine organization. The fine organization is distinguished from the coarse by fine, soft hair, delicate skin, nicely chiselled features [bem-cinzelada ou esculpida – somos belos!], small bones, tapering extremities [membros pontiagudos, i.e., que se afunilam nas mãos e nos pés, na canela e no antebraço!], and frequently by a muscular system comparatively small and feeble. It is frequently associated with superior intellect, and with a strong and active emotional nature.” “It is the organization of the civilized, refined, and educated, rather than of the barbarous and low-born and untrained”

The nervous diathesis appears, within certain limits, to protect the system against attacks of fever and inflammation.” Isso explicaria porque só tive febre uma vez desde a idade adulta.

The tuberculous diathesis frequently accompanies a fine organization; but fine organizations only in a certain proportion of cases have a tuberculous diathesis. The nervous diathesis is frequently not only not susceptible to tuberculosis, but apparently much less so than the average, and sometimes, indeed, seems to be antagonistic to it, for there are many nervous patients in whom no amount of exposure or hardship or imprudence seems to be able to develop phthisis [tísica]” Devo acrescentar alguma imunidade ao câncer?

Among Americans of the higher orders, those who live in-doors, drinking is becoming a lost art; among these classes drinking customs are now historic, must be searched for, read or talked about, like extinct or dying-away species.” There is, perhaps, no single fact in sociology more instructive and far reaching than this, and this is but a fraction of the general and sweeping fact that the heightened sensitiveness of Americans forces them to abstain entirely, or to use in incredible and amusing moderation, not only the stronger alcoholic liquors, whether pure or impure, but also the milder wines, ales, and beers, and even tea and coffee.”

I replied that there were very few nervous patients who were not injured by it, and very few who would not find it out without the aid of any physician. Our fathers could smoke, our mothers could smoke, but their children must oft-times be cautious; and chewing is very rapidly going out of custom, and will soon, like snuff-taking, become a historic curiosity; while cigars give way to cigarettes. From the cradle to the grave the Chinese empire smokes, and when a sick man in China has grown so weak that he no longer asks for his pipe, they give up hope, and expect him to die. Savage tribes without number drink most of the time when not sleeping or fighting, and without suffering alcoholism, or without ever becoming inebriates [!]” But 50 years ago opium produced sleep; now the same dose keeps us awake, like coffee or tea—susceptibility to this drug has been revolutionized.” Thus the united forces of climate and civilization are pressing us back from one stimulant to another, until, like babes, we find no safe retreat save in chocolate and milk and water.”

Reprove an Angola negro for being drunk and he will reply, <My mother is dead,> as though that were excuse enough. Even as recently as the beginning of the present century, the custom of drinking at funerals yet survived with our fathers. At the present time both culture and conscience are opposed to such habits.”

It is through the alcohol, and not the adulterations, that excessive drinking injures.” This functional malady of the nervous system which we call inebriety, as distinguished from the vice or habit of drunkenness, may be said to have been born in America, has here developed sooner and far more rapidly than elsewhere, and here also has received earlier and more successful attention from men of science.” For those individuals who inherit a tendency to inebriety, the only safe course is absolute abstinence, especially in early life; and in certain cases treatment of the nervous system, on the exhaustion of which the inebriety depends.”

AQUILO QUE NENHUMA REVISTA DE NUTRIÇÃO DIRÁ: “we so often find not only epileptics, but neurasthenics and nervous persons with other symptoms, are free and sometimes excessive eaters. They say their food does not give them strength, and it does not, for the same reason that the acid poured into the impure fluid of the battery does not give us electric force. There are those who all their lives are habitually small eaters and yet are great workers, and there are those who, though all their lives great eaters, are never strong; their food is either not digested or thoroughly assimilated, and so a much smaller fraction than should be is converted into nerve-force.”

In all the great cities of the East, among the brain-working classes of our large cities everywhere, pork, in all its varieties and preparations, has taken a subordinate place among the meats upon our tables, for the reason that the stomach of the brain-worker cannot digest it.”

Four and 5 meals a day is, or has been, the English and, notably, the German custom. Foreigners have greatly surpassed us in the taking of solid as well as liquid food.”

The eyes also are good barometers of our nervous civilization. The increase of asthenopia and short-sightedness [miopia], and, in general, of the functional disorders of the eye, are demonstrated facts and are most instructive. The great skill and great number of our oculists are constant proof and suggestions of the nervousness of our age. The savage can usually see well; myopia is a measure of civilization.” “near-sightedness increases in schools” Macnamara declares that he took every opportunity of examining the eyes of Southall aborigines of Bengal, for the purpose of discovering whether near-sightedness and diseases of like character existed among them, and he asserts that he never saw a young Southall whose eyes were not perfect.”

at the age of 20, 26% of Americans are near-sighted. In Russia, 42%, and in Germany, 62%.” A nação mais intelectual do mundo.

American dentists are the best in the world, because American teeth are the worst in the world.”

Irregularities of teeth, like their decay, are the product primarily of civilization, secondarily of climate. These are rarely found among the Indians or the Chinese; and, according to Dr. Kingsley, are rare even in idiots”

It is probable that negroes are troubled earlier than Indians. The popular impression that negroes always have good teeth is erroneous—the contrast between the whiteness of the teeth and the blackness of the face tending not a little to flatter them.”

Coarse races and peoples, and coarse individuals can go with teeth badly broken down without being aware of it from any pain; whereas, in a finely organized constitution, the very slightest decay in the teeth excites pain which renders filling or extracting imperative. The coarse races and coarse individuals are less disturbed by the bites of mosquitoes, by the presence of flies or of dirt on the body, than those in whom the nervous diathesis prevails”

It is said, for example, of the negroes of the South, that they rarely if ever sneeze.”

Special explanations without number have been offered for this long-observed phenomenon—the early and rapid decay of American teeth—such as the use of sweets, the use of acids, neglect of cleanliness, and the use of food that requires little mastication. But they who urge these special facts to account for the decay of teeth of our civilization would, by proper inquiry, learn that the savages and negroes, and semi-barbarians everywhere, in many cases use sweets far more than we, and never clean their mouths, and never suffer, except in old age.”

the only races that have poor teeth are those who clean them.” Quando o remédio vem mais tarde que a doença.

Among savages in all parts of the earth baldness is unusual, except in extreme age, and gray hairs come much later than with us. So common is baldness in our large cities that what was once a deformity and exception is now almost the rule, and an element of beauty.”

Increased sensitiveness to both heat and cold is a noteworthy sign of nervousness.”

Cold bathing is not borne as well as formerly.” “Water treatment is as good for some forms of nervous disease as it ever was; but it must be adapted to the constitution of the patient, and adapted also to the peculiar needs of each case.”

The disease, state, or condition to which the term neurasthenia is applied is subdivisible, just as insanity is subdivided into general paresis or general paralysis of the insane, epileptic insanity, hysterical, climatic, and puerperal insanity; just as the disease or condition that we call trance is subdivided into clinical varieties, such as intellectual trance, induced trance, cataleptic trance, somnambulistic trance, emotional trance, ecstatic trance, etc.

That diabetes is largely if not mainly a nervous disease is becoming more and more the conviction of all medical thinkers, and that, like Bright’s disease, it has increased of late, can be proved by statistics that in this respect are in harmony with observation.”

A ERA DA RINITE E DAS ALERGIAS: “A single branch of our neurological tree, hay-fever, has in it the material for years of study; he who understands that, understands the whole problem. In the history of nervous disease I know not where to look for anything as extraordinary or instructive as the rise and growth of hay-fever in the USA.”

Catarrh of the nose and nasal pharyngeal states — so-called nasal and pharyngeal catarrh — is not a nervous disease, in the strict sense of the term, but there is often a nervous element in it; and in the marked and obstinate forms it is, like decay and irregularities of the teeth, one of the signs or one of the nerve-symptoms of impairment of nutrition and decrease of vital force which make us unable to resist change of climate and extremes of temperature.”

The phenomenal beauty of the American girl of the highest type, is a subject of the greatest interest both to the psychologist and the sociologist, since it has no precedent, in recorded history, at least; and it is very instructive in its relation to the character and the diseases of America.”

The same climatic peculiarities that make us nervous also make us handsome”

In no other country are the daughters pushed forward so rapidly, so early sent to school, so quickly admitted into society; the yoke of social observance (if it may be called such), must be borne by them much sooner than by their transatlantic sisters — long before marriage they have had much experience in conversation and in entertainment, and have served as queens in social life, and assumed many of the responsibilities and activities connected therewith. Their mental faculties in the middle range being thus drawn upon, constantly from childhood, they develop rapidly a cerebral activity both of an emotional and an intellectual nature, that speaks in the eyes and forms the countenance; thus, fineness of organization, the first element of beauty, is supplemented by expressiveness of features — which is its second element”

Handsome women are found here and there in Great Britain, and rarely in Germany; more frequently in France and in Austria, in Italy and Spain”

One cause, perhaps, of the almost universal homeliness of female faces among European works of art is the fact that the best of the masters never saw a handsome woman.” Esqueceu da relatividade histórica do tipo belo!

If Raphael had been wont to see everyday in Rome or Naples what he would now see everyday in New York, Baltimore, or Chicago, it would seem probable that, in his Sistine Madonna he would have preferred a face of, at least, moderate beauty, to the neurasthenic and anemic type that is there represented. [?]”

To the first and inevitable objection that will be made to all here said — namely, that beauty is a relative thing, the standard of which varies with age, race, and individual — the answer is found in the fact that the American type is today more adored in Europe than in America; that American girls are more in demand for foreign marriages than any other nationality; and that the professional beauties of London that stand highest are those who, in appearance and in character have come nearest the American type.” Isso se chama cultura hegemônica, e não um argumento de defesa – e um pouco de chauvinismo também…

The ruddiness or freshness, the health-suggesting and health-sustaining face of the English girl seem incomparable when partially veiled, or when a few rods away” HAHA. Uma obra não muito recomendável na parte estética… Beleza EXÓTICA!

The European woman steps with a firmer tread than the American, and with not so much lightness, pliancy, and grace. In a multitude, where both nations are represented, this difference is impressive.”

The grasp of the European woman is firmer and harder, as though on account of greater strength and firmness of muscle. In the touch of the hand of the American woman there is a nicety and tenderness that the English woman destroys by the force of the impact.”

3. CAUSES OF AMERICAN NERVOUSNESS

Punctuality is a greater thief of nervous force than is procrastination of time. We are under constant strain, mostly unconscious, often-times in sleeping as well as in waking hours, to get somewhere or do something at some definite moment.”

In Constantinople indolence is the ideal, as work is the ideal in London and New York”

There are those who prefer, or fancy they prefer, the sensations of movement and activity to the sensations of repose”

The telegraph is a cause of nervousness the potency of which is little understood. (…) prices fluctuated far less rapidly, and the fluctuations which now are transmitted instantaneously over the world were only known then by the slow communication of sailing vessels or steamships” “every cut in prices in wholesale lines in the smallest of any of the Western cities, becomes known in less than an hour all over the Union; thus competition is both diffused and intensified.”

Rhythmical, melodious, musical sounds are not only agreeable, but when not too long maintained are beneficial, and may be ranked among our therapeutical agencies.”

The experiments, inventions, and discoveries of Edison alone have made and are now making constant and exhausting draughts on the nervous forces of America and Europe, and have multiplied in very many ways, and made more complex and extensive, the tasks and agonies not only of practical men, but of professors and teachers and students everywhere” Um tanto utópico e nostálgico para um “médico pragmático”…

On the mercantile or practical side the promised discoveries and inventions of this one man have kept millions of capital and thousand of capitalists in suspense and distress on both sides of the sea.”

the commerce of the Greeks, of which classical histories talk so much, was more like play — like our summer yachting trips”

The gambler risks usually all that he has; while the stock buyer risks very much more than he has. The stock buyer usually has a certain commercial, social, and religious position, which is thrown into the risk, in all his ventures”

as the civilized man is constantly kept in check by the inhibitory power of the intellect, he appears to be far less emotional than the savage, who, as a rule, with some exceptions, acts out his feelings with comparatively little restraint.”

Love, even when gratified, is a costly emotion; when disappointed, as it is so often likely to be, it costs still more, drawing largely, in the growing years of both sexes, on the margin of nerve-force, and thus becomes the channel through which not a few are carried on to neurasthenia, hysteria, epilepsy, or insanity.”

A modern philosopher of the most liberal school states that he hates to hear one laugh aloud, regarding the habit, as he declares, a survival of barbarism.”

There are two institutions that are almost distinctively American — political elections and religious revivals”

My friend, presidents and politicians are chips and foam on the surface of the sea; they are not the sea; tossed up by the tide and left on the shore, but they are not the tide; fold your arms and go to bed, and most of the evils of this world will correct themselves, and, of those that remain, few will be modified by anything that you or I can do.”

The experiment attempted on this continent of making every man, every child, and every woman an expert in politics and theology is one of the costliest of experiments with living human beings, and has been drawing on our surplus energies with cruel extravagance for 100 years.” Agora, 250…

Protestantism, with the subdivision into sects which has sprung from it, is an element in the causation of the nervous diseases of our time. No Catholic country is very nervous, and partly for this—that in a Catholic nation the burden of religion is carried by the church.” Coitado do Brasil, trocando o certo pelo duvidoso assim…

The difference between Canadians and Americans is observed as soon as we cross the border, the Catholic church and a limited monarchy acting as antidotes to neurasthenia and allied affections. Protestant England has imitated Catholicism, in a measure, by concentrating the machinery of religion and taking away the burden from the people. It is stated —although it is supposed that this kind of statistics are unreliable— that in Italy insanity has been on the increase during these few years in which there has been civil and religious liberty in that country.”

The anxieties about the future, family, property, etc., are certainly so wearing on the negro, that some of them, without doubt, have expressed a wish to return to slavery.”

advances in science are not usually made by committees—indeed, are almost never made by them, least of all by government committees”

The people of this country have been pressed constantly with these 3 questions: How shall we keep from starving? Who is to be the next president? And where shall we go when we die? In a limited, narrow way, other nations have met these questions; at least two of them, that of starvation and that of the future life; but nowhere in ancient or modern civilization have these 3 questions been agitated so severely or brought up with such energy as here.”

Those who have acquired or have inherited wealth, are saved an important percentage of this forecasting and fore-worry”

The barbarian cares nothing for the great problems of life; seeks no solution — thinks of no solution of the mysteries of nature, and, after the manner of many reasoners in modern delusions, dismisses what he cannot at once comprehend as supernatural, and leaves it unsatisfactorily solved for himself, for others, and for all time”

Little account has been made of the fact that the old world is small geographically. The ancient Greeks knew only of Greece and the few outside barbarians who tried to destroy them. The discovery of America, like the invention of printing, prepared the way for modern nervousness; and, in connection with the telegraph, the railway, and the periodical press increased a hundred-fold the distresses of humanity.” The burning of Chicago—a city less than half a century old, on a continent whose existence was unknown a few centuries ago—becomes in a few hours the property of both hemispheres, and makes heavy drafts on the vitality not only of Boston and New York, but of London, Paris, and Vienna.”

Letter-writing is an index of nervousness; those nations who writes the most letters being the most nervous, and those who write scarcely at all, as the Turks and Russians, knowing nothing or but very little of it.”

The education of the Athenian boy consisted in play and games and songs, and repetitions of poems, and physical feats in the open air. His life was a long vacation, in which, as a rule, he rarely toiled as hard as the American lad in the intervals of his toil. (…) What they called work, gymnastics, competition games, and conversations on art and letters, is to us recreation.”

Up to a certain point work develops capacity for work; through endurance is evolved the power of greater endurance; force becomes the parent of force. But here, as in all animate nature, there are limitations of development which cannot be passed. The capacity of the nervous system for sustained work and worry has not increased in proportion to the demands for work and worry that are made upon it.”

GREEN COMMENT LAND: “Continuous and uniform cold as in Greenland, like continuous and uniform heat as on the Amazon, produces enervation and languor; but repeated alternations of the cold of Greenland and the heat of the Amazon produce energy, restlessness, and nervousness.”

The element of dryness of the air, peculiar of our climate as distinguished from that of Europe, both in Great Britain and on the Continent, is of the highest scientific and practical interest.” “On the nervous system this unusual dryness and thinness of the air have a many-sided influence; such as increase of headaches, neuralgias, and diminished capacity for sustaining cerebral toil.” The organs, pianos, and violins of America are superior to those made in Europe at the present time. This superiority is the result, not so much of greater skill, ingenuity, or experience, but—so far as I can learn, from conversing with experts in this line—from the greater dryness of the air, which causes the wood to season better than in the moist atmosphere of Europe.”

Moisture conducts electricity, and an atmosphere well charged with moisture, other conditions being the same, will tend to keep the electricity in a state of equilibrium, since it allows free and ready conduction at all times and in all directions.” In regions where the atmosphere is excessively dry, as in the Rocky Mountains, human beings—indeed all animals, become constantly acting lightning-rods, liable at any moment to be made a convenient pathway through which electricity going to or from the earth seeks an equilibrium.”

in the East our neuralgic and rheumatic patients, just before thunder-storms, are suddenly attacked by exquisite pains that at once disappear with the fair weather. There are those so sensitive that for 100 miles, and for a full day in advance, as Dr. Mitchell has shown, they can predict the approach of a storm.”

Dryness of the air, whether external or internal, likewise excites nervousness by heightening the rapidity of the processes of waste and repair in the organism, so that we live faster than in a moist atmosphere.”

one of the Manchester mill owners asserted that, during a season of dry weather, there was, in weaving alone, a loss of 5%, in quantity, and another loss of 5%, in quality; in spinning, also, an equal loss is claimed. To maintain moisture in mills, sundry devices have been tried, which have met, I believe, with partial success in practice.”

Even in our perfect Octobers, on days that are pictures of beauty and ideals of climate — just warm enough to be agreeable and stimulating enough not to be depressing, we yet remain in the house far more than Europeans are wont to do even in rainy or ugly seasons.” So what, Mr. Productive Media?

The English know nothing of summer, as we know of it — they have no days when it is dangerous, and scarcely any days when it is painful to walk or ride in the direct rays of the sun; and in winter, spring, and fall there are few hours when one cannot by proper clothing keep warm while moderately exercising.”

The Kuro Siwo stream of the Pacific, with its circuit of 18,000 miles, carries the warm water of the tropics towards the poles, and regulates in a manner the climate of Japan. Mr. Croll estimates that if the Gulf Stream were to stop, the annual temperature of London would fall 30 degrees [Farenheit], and England would become as cold as Nova Zembla. It is the influence of the Gulf Stream that causes London, that is 11° farther north than New York, to have an annual mean temperature but 2° lower.”

According to Miss Isabella Bird, who has recently published a work entitled Unbeaten Tracks in Japan, which is not only the very best work ever written on Japan, but one of the most remarkable works of travel ever written by man or woman, it seems that the Japanese suffer both from extremes of heat and cold, from deep snows and ice, and from the many weeks of sultriness such as oppress us in the US. The atmosphere of Japan is though far more moist than that of America, in that respect resembling some of the British Isles”

Our Meteorological Bureau has justified its existence and labors by demonstrating and popularizing the fact that our waves of extreme heat and of extreme cold and severe climatic perturbations of various kinds are born in or pass from the Pacific through these mountains and travel eastward, and hence their paths can be followed and their coming can be predicted with a measure of certainty.”

in the latter part of the winter and early spring—or what passes for spring, which is really a part of winter, and sometimes its worse part—there is more suffering from cold, more liability to disease, by taking cold, and more debility from long confinement in dry and overheated air than in early and mid-winter”

the strong races, like the Hebrews and Anglo-Saxons, succeed in nearly all climates, and are dominant wherever they go; but in unlimited or very extended time, race is a result of climate and environment.”

Savages may go to the most furious excesses without developing any nervous disease; they may gorge themselves, or they may go without eating for a week, they may rest in camp or they may go upon laborious campaigns, and yet never have nervous dyspepsia, sick-headache, hay-fever, or neuralgia.”

No people in the world are so careful of their diet, the quality and quantity of their food, and in regard to their habits of drinking, as the very class of Americans who suffer most from these neuroses.”

Alcohol only produces inebriety when it acts on a nervous system previously made sensitive. Alcoholism and inebriety are the products not of alcohol, but of alcohol plus a certain grade of nerve degeneration.”

But bad air, that is, air simply made impure by the presence of human beings, without any special contagion, seems powerless to produce disease of any kind, unless the system be prepared for it. Not only bad air, but bad air and filth combined, the Chinese of the lower orders endure both in this country and their own, and are not demonstrably harmed thereby (…) but impure air, plus a constitution drawn upon and weakened by civilization, is an exciting cause of nervous disease of immense force.”

The philosophy of the causation of American nervousness may be expressed in algebraic formula as follows: civilization in general + American civilization in particular (young and rapidly growing nation, with civil, religious, and social liberty) + exhausting climate (extremes of heat and cold, and dryness) + the nervous diathesis (itself a result of previously named factors) + overwork or overworry, or excessive indulgence of appetites or passions = an attack of neurasthenia or nervous exhaustion.”

Dr. Habsch, the chief oculist in Constantinople, says that the effect of tobacco upon the eyes is very problematical; that everybody smokes from morning to night, the men a great deal, the women a little less than the men, and the children smoke from the age of 7 and 8 years. He states that the number of cases of amaurosis [cegueira] is very limited. If expert oculists would examine the eyes of the Chinese, who smoke quite as much as the Turks, if not more, and smoke opium as well as tobacco, they would unquestionably confirm the conclusion of Dr. Habsch among the Turks. Dr. Habsch believes that in persons with a very delicate skin and conjunctiva [membrana mucosa que liga as pálpabras com o tecido ocular propriamente dito] among the Turks, smoking frequently causes chronic irritation, local congestion, profuse lachrymation, blepharitis ciliaris [inflamação dos cílios], and more or less intense redness of the eyelids. (cf. Dr. Webster on Amblyopia [Perda de visão] from the Use of Tobacco) [livro inexistente na web]”

The Hollanders, according to a most expert traveller, Edmondo De Amicis, are the greatest smokers of Europe; on entering a house, with the first greeting you are offered a cigar, and when you leave another is handed to you; many retire with a pipe in their mouth, re-light it if they awake during the night; they measure distances by smoke – to such a place by not so many miles but by so many pipes.” “Says one Hollander, smoke is our second breath; says another, the cigar is the 6th finger of the hand.”

Opium eating in China does not work in the way that the same habit does in the white races.” “when it is said of a Chinaman that he smokes opium, it is meant that he smokes to excess and has a morbid craving for it, just as with us the expression a man drinks means that he drinks too much”

It is clear that the habit of taking opium does not necessarily impair fertility, since large families are known among those who use opium, even to excess.”

Among my nervous patients I find very many who cannot digest vegetables, but must use them with much caution; but all China lives on vegetables, and indigestion is not a national disease. Many of the Chinese live in undrained grounds, in conditions favorable to ague and various fevers, but they do not suffer from these diseases, nor from diseases of the lungs and bronchial tubes, to the same extent as foreign residents there who do not use opium.”

I have been twice favored with the chance to study Africa in America. On the sea islands of the South, between Charleston and Savannah, there are thousands of negroes, once slaves, most of whom were born on those islands, who there will die, and who at no time have been brought into relation with our civilization, except so far as it is exhibited in a very few white inhabitants in the vicinity. Intellectually, they can be not very much in advance of their African ancestors; in looks and manners they remind me of the Zulus now exhibiting in America; for although since emancipation they have been taught by philanthropists, part of the time under governmental supervision, some of the elements of common school teaching, yet none of them have made, or are soon likely to make, any very important progress beyond those elements, and few, if any of them, even care to exercise the art of reading after it is taught them. Here, then, is a bit of barbarism at our door-steps; here, with our own eyes, and with the aid of those who live near them and employ them, I have sought for the facts of comparative neurology. There is almost no insanity among these negroes; there is no functional nervous disease or symptoms among them of any name or phase; to suggest spinal irritation, or hysteria of the physical form, or hay-fever, or nervous dyspepsia among these people is but to joke.” These primitive people can go, when required, for weeks and months sleeping but 1 or 2 hours out of the 24; they can labor for all day, or for 2 days, eating nothing or but little; hog and hominy and lish, all the year round, they can eat without getting dyspepsia; indulgence of passions several-fold greater, at least, than is the habit of the whites, either there or here, never injures them either permanently or temporarily; if you would find a virgin among them, it is said you must go to the cradle; alcohol, when they can get it, they drink with freedom, and become intoxicated like the whites, but rarely, indeed, manifest the symptoms of delirium-tremens, and never of chronic alcoholism”

These blacks cannot summon as much energy for a moment in an emergency as the whites, since they have less control over their energies, but in holding-on power, in sustained, continuous, unbroken muscular endurance, for hours and days, they surpass the whites.”

The West is where the East was a quarter of a century ago—passing more rapidly, as it would appear, through the same successive stages of development.”

4. LONGEVITY OF BRAIN-WORKERS AND THE RELATION OF AGE TO WORK

Without civilization there can be no nervousness; there is no race, no climate, no environment that can make nervousness and nervous disease possible and common save when reenforced by brain-work and worry and in-door life. This is the dark and, so far as it goes, truthful side of our theme; the brighter side is to be drawn in the present chapter.

Thomas Hughes, in his Life of Alfred the Great, makes a statement that <the world’s hardest workers and noblest benefactors have rarely been long-lived>. That any intelligent writer of the present day should make a statement so untrue shows how hard it is to destroy an old superstition.

The remark is based on the belief which has been held for centuries that the mind can be used only at the injurious expense of the body. This belief has been something more than a mere popular prejudice; it has been a professional dogma, and has inspired nearly all the writers on hygiene since medicine has been a science; and intellectual and promising youth have thereby been dissuaded from entering brain-working professions; and thus, much of the choicest genius has been lost to civilization; students in college have abandoned plans of life to which their tastes inclined, and gone to the farm or workshop; authors, scientists, and investigators in the several professions have thrown away the accumulated experience of the better half of life, and retired to pursuits as uncongenial as they were profitless. The delusion has, therefore, in 2 ways, wrought evil, specifically by depriving the world of the services of some of its best endowed natures, and generally by fostering a habit of accepting statement for demonstration.

Between 1864 and 1866 I obtained statistics on the general subject of the relation of occupation to health and longevity that convinced me of the error of the accepted teachings in regard to the effect of mental labor.”

The views I then advocated, and which I enforced by statistical evidence were:

1st. That the brain-working classes—clergymen, lawyers, physicians, merchants, scientists, and men of letters, lived much longer than the muscle-working classes.

2nd. That those who followed occupations that called both muscle and brain into exercise, were longer-lived than those who lived in occupations that were purely manual.

3rd. That the greatest and hardest brain-workers of history have lived longer on the average than brain-workers of ordinary ability and industry.

4th. That clergymen were longer-lived than any other great class of brain-workers. [QUE PRAGA!]

5th. That longevity increased very greatly with the advance of civilization; and that this increase was too marked to be explained merely by improved sanitary knowledge.

6th. That although nervous diseases increased with the increase of culture, and although the unequal and excessive excitements and anxieties attendant on mental occupations of a high civilization were so far both prejudicial to health and longevity, yet these incidental evils were more than counter-balanced by the fact that fatal inflammatory diseases have diminished in frequency and violence in proportion as nervous diseases have increased; an also that brain-work is, per se, healthful and conducive to longevity.”

the greater majority of those who die in any one of the three great professions — law, theology, and medicine — have, all their lives, from 21 upwards, followed that profession in which they died.”

I have ascertained the longevity of 500 of the greatest men in history. The list I prepared includes a large proportion of the most eminent names in all the departments of thought and activity. (…) the average age of those I have mentioned, I found to be 64.2. (…) the greatest men of the world have lived longer on the average than men of ordinary ability in the different occupations by 14 years” The value of this comparison is enforced by the consideration that longevity has increased with the progress of civilization, while the list I prepared represents every age of recorded history.” “I am sure that any chronology comprising from 100 to 500 of the most eminent personages in history, at any cycle, will furnish an average longevity of from 64 to 70 years. Madden, in his very interesting work The Infirmities of Genius, gives a list of 240 illustrious names, with their ages at death.”

IV comparative longevity of brain-workers

The full explanation of the superior longevity of the brain-working classes would require a treatise on the science of sociology, and particularly of the relation of civilization to health. The leading factors, accounting for the long life of those who live by brain-labor, are:

(…)

In the successful brain-worker worry is transferred into work; in the muscle-worker work too often degrades into worry.” “To the happy brain-worker life is a long vacation; while the muscle-worker often finds no joy in his daily toil, and very little in the intervals.”

Longevity is the daughter of comfort. Of the many elements that make up happiness, mental organization, physical health, fancy, friends, and money—the last is, for the average man, greater than any other, except the first.”

for a large number, sleep is a luxury of which they never have sufficient for real recuperation”

The nervous temperament, which usually predominates in brain-workers, is antagonistic to fatal, acute, inflammatory disease, and favorable to long life.”

Nervous people, if not too feeble, may die everyday. They do not die; they talk of death, and each day expect it, and yet they live. Many of the most annoying nervous diseases, especially of the functional, and some even of the structural varieties, do not rapidly destroy life, and are, indeed, consistent with great longevity.”

the nervous man can expose himself to malaria, to cold and dampness, with less danger of disease, and with less danger of death if he should contract disease, than his tough and hardy brother.”

In the conflict with fevers and inflammations, strength is often weakness, and weakness becomes strength—we are saved through debility.”

Still further, my studies have shown that, of distinctively nervous diseases, those which have the worst pathology and are the most hopeless, such as locomotor ataxia, progressive muscular atrophy, apoplexy with hemiplegia, and so on, are more common and more severe, and more fatal among the comparatively vigorous and strong, than among the most delicate and finely organized. Cancer, even, goes hardest with the hardy, and is most relievable in the nervous.”

Women, with all their nervousness—and in civilized lands, women are more nervous, immeasurably, than men, and suffer more from general and special nervous diseases—yet live quite as long as men, if not somewhat longer; their greater nervousness and far greater liability to functional diseases of the nervous system being compensated for by their smaller liability to certain acute and inflammatory disorders, and various organic nervous diseases, likewise, such as the general paralysis of insanity.”

Brain-workers can adapt their labor to their moods and hours and periods of greatest capacity for labor better than muscle-workers. In nearly all intellectual employments there is large liberty; literary and professional men especially, are so far masters of their time that they can select the hours and days for their most exacting and important work; and when from any cause indisposed to hard thinking, can rest and recreate, or limit themselves to mechanical details.”

Forced labor, against the grain of one’s nature, is always as expensive as it is unsatisfactory”

Even coarser natures have their moods, and the choicest spirits are governed by them; and they who worship their moods do most wisely; and those who are able to do so are the fortunate ones of the earth.”

Again, brain-workers do their best work between the ages of 25-45; before that period they are preparing to work; after that period, work, however extensive it may be, becomes largely accumulation and routine.” “It is as hard to lay a stone wall after one has been laying it 50 years as during the first year. The range of muscular growth and development is narrow, compared with the range of mental growth; the day-laborer soon reaches the maximum of his strength. The literary or scientific worker goes on from strength to strength, until what at 25 was impossible, and at 30 difficult, at 35 becomes easy, and at 40 a past-time.”

The number of illustrious names of history is by no means so great as is currently believed; for, as the visible stars of the firmament, which at a glance appear infinite in number, on careful estimate are reduced to a few thousands, so the galaxy of genius, which appears interminable on a comprehensive estimate, presents but few lights of immortal fame. Mr. Galton, in his Hereditary Genius, states that there have not been more than 400 great men in history.”

obscurity is no sure evidence of demerit, but only a probability of such”

Only in rare instances is special or general talent so allied with influence, or favor, or fortune, or energy that commands circumstances, that it can develop its full functions; <things are in the saddle and ride mankind>, environment commands the environed.”

The stars we see in the sky are but mites compared with the infinite orbs that shall never be seen; but no star is a delusion—each one means a world, the light of which very well corresponds to its size and distance from the earth and sun.” “Routine and imitation work can no more confer the fame that comes from work that is original and creative than the moon can take the place of the sun.”

It is this confounding of force with the results of force, of fame with the work by which fame is attained that causes philosophers to dispute, deny, or doubt, or to puzzle over the law of the relation of age to work, as here announced.

When the lightning flashes along the sky, we expect a discharge will soon follow, since light travels faster than sound; so some kinds of fame are more rapidly diffused than others, and are more nearly contemporaneous with their origin; but as a law, there is an interval — varying from years to hundreds of years — between the doing of any original work and the appreciation of that work by any considerable number of mankind that we call fame.

The great men that we know are old men; but they did the work that has made them great when they were young; in loneliness, in poverty, often, as well as under discouragement, and in neglected or despised youth has been achieved all that has advanced, all that is likely to advance mankind.”

In the man of genius, the idea starts where, in the man of routine, it leaves off.”

Original work—that done by geniuses who have thereby attained immortal fame, is the only kind of work that can be used as the measure of cerebral force in all our search for this law of the relation of work to the time of life at which work is done for the two-fold reason—first, that it is the highest and best measure of cerebral force; and, secondly, because it is the only kind of work that gives earthly immortality.”

Men do not long remember, nor do they earnestly reverence those who have done only what everybody can do. We never look up, unless the object at which we look is higher than ourselves; the forces that control the rise and fall of reputation are as inevitable and as remorseless as heat, light, and gravity; if a great man looms up from afar, it is because he is taller than the average man; else, he would pass below the horizon as we receded from him; factitious fame is as impossible as factitious heat, light, or gravity; if there be force, there must have been, somewhere, and at some time, a source whence that force was evolved.”

the strength of a man is his strength at his strongest point—what he can do in any one direction, at his very best. However weak and even puerile, immature, and non-expert one may be in all other directions except one, be gains an immortality of fame if, in that one direction he develops a phenomenal power; weaknesses and wickednesses, serious immoralities and waywardnesses are soon forgotten by the world, which is, indeed, blinded to all these defects in the face of the strong illumination of genius. Judged by their defects, the non-expert side of their character, moral or intellectual, men like Burns,¹ Shakespeare, Socrates, Cicero, Caesar, Napoleon, Beethoven, Mozart, Byron, Dickens, etc., are but as babes or lunatics, and far, very far below the standard of their fellows.”

¹ Poeta escocês, 1759-96.

SOBRE A PRECOCIDADE E “GASTO DA ENERGIA MENTAL”: “Men to whom these truths are repelling put their eyes on those in high positions and in the decline of life, like Disraeli or Gladstone, forgetting that we have no proof that either of these men have ever originated a new thought during the past 25 years, and that in all their contributions to letters during that time there is nothing to survive, or worthy to survive, their authors.

They point to Darwin, the occupation of whose old age has been to gather into form the thoughts and labors of his manhood and youth, and whose only immortal book was the product of his silver and golden decade.”

IV the relation of age to original work

The lives of some great men are not sufficiently defined to differentiate the period, much less the decade or the year of their greatest productive force. Such lives are either rejected, or only the time of death and the time of first becoming famous are noted; very many authors have never told the world when they thought-out or even wrote their masterpieces, and the season of publication is the only date that we can employ. These classes of facts, it will be seen, tell in favor of old rather than of young men, and will make the year of maximum production later rather than earlier, and cannot, therefore, be objected to by those who may doubt my conclusions.”

For those who have died young, and have worked in original lines up to the year of their death, the date of death has sometimes been regarded as sufficient. Great difficulty has been found in proving the dates of the labors of the great names of antiquity, and, therefore, many of them are necessarily excluded from consideration, but in an extended comparison between ancient and modern brain-workers, so far as history makes possible, there was but little or no difference.”

This second or supplementary list was analyzed in the same way as the primary list, and it was found that the law was true of these, as of those of greater distinction. The conclusion is just, scientific, and inevitable, that if we should go down through all the grades of cerebral force, we should find this law prevailing among medium and inferior natures, that the obscure, the dull, and the unaspiring accomplished the little they did in the direction of relatively original work in the brazen and golden decades.” Tenho 8 anos pela frente.

These researches were originally made as far back as 1870, and were first made public in lectures delivered by me before the Long Island Historical Society. The titles of the lectures were, Young Men in History, and the Decline of Moral Principle in Old Age.”

Finally, it should be remarked that the list has been prepared with absolute impartiality, and no name and no date has been included or omitted to prove any theory. The men who have done original or important work in advanced age, such as Dryden,¹ Radetzky,² Moltke,³ Thiers,4 De Foe,5 have all been noted, and are embraced in the average.”

¹ Poeta inglês, 1631-1700.

² Marechal, militar estrategista alemão que combateu inclusive Napoleão, vivendo ativo até uma idade avançada (1766-1858).

³ Provavelmente o Conde Adam Moltke (1710-1792), diplomata dinamarquês. Seu filho foi primeiro-ministro.

4 Marie Adolph –, político e escritor francês, 1797-1877, foi presidente eleito na França após a queda dos Bourbon.

5 Daniel Defoe viveu 71 anos e também foi ensaísta e publicou obras de não-ficção, além de seu maior sucesso.

The golden decade alone represents nearly 1/3 of the original work of the world. (…) The year of maximum productiveness is 39.”

All the athletes with whom I have conversed on this subject, the guides and lumbermen in the woods — those who have always lived solely by muscle — agree substantially to this: that their staying power is better between the ages of 35 and 45, than either before or after. To get the best soldiers, we must rob neither the cradle nor the grave; but select from those decades when the best brain-work of the world is done.”

Original work requires enthusiasm; routine work, experience.” “Unconsciously the people recognize this distinction between the work that demands enthusiasm and that which demands experience, for they prefer old doctors and lawyers, while in the clerical profession, where success depends on the ability to constantly originate and express thought, young men are the more popular, and old men, even of great ability, passed by. In the editorial profession original work is demanded, and most of the editorials of our daily press are written by young men. In the life of every old man there comes a point, sooner or later, when experience ceases to have any educating power; and when, in the language of Wall St., he becomes a bear; in the language of politics, a Bourbon.”

some of the greatest poets, painters, and sculptors, such as Dryden, Richardson, Cowper, Young, De Foe, Titian, Christopher Wren, and Michael Angelo, have done a part of their very best work in advanced life. The imagery both of Bacon and of Burke seemed to increase in richness as they grew older.

In the realm of reason, philosophic thought, invention and discovery, the exceptions are very rare. Nearly all the great systems of theology, metaphysics, and philosophy are the result of work done between 20 and 50.”

Michael Angelo and Sir Christopher Wren could wait for a quarter or even half a century before expressing their thoughts in St. Peter’s or St. Paul’s; but the time of the conception of those thoughts — long delayed in their artistic expression — was the time when their cerebral force touched its highest mark.

In the old age of literary artists, as Carlyle, Dickens, George Elliot, or Tennyson, the form may be most excellent; but from the purely scientific side the work though it may be good, is old; a repetition often-times, in a new form, of what they have said many times before.”

The philosophy of Bacon can never be written but once; to re-write it, to present it a 2nd time, in a different dress, would indicate weakness, would seem almost grotesque; but to statuary and painting we return again and again; we allow the artist to re-portray his thought, no matter how many times; we visit in succession a hundred cathedrals, all very much alike; and a delicious melody grows more pleasing with repetition; whence it is that in poetry — the queen of the arts — old age has wrought little, or not at all, since the essence of poetry is creative thought, and old age is unable to think; whence, also, in acting — the oldest of all the arts, the servant of all — the best experts are often at their best, or not far below their best, save for the acquisition of new characters, in the iron and wooden decades.”

Similarly with the art of writing—the style, the dress, the use of words, the art of expressing thoughts, and not of thinking. Men who have done their best thinking before 40 have done their best writing after that period.” it is thought, and not the language of thought, that best tests the creative faculties.”

The conversation of old men of ability, before they have passed into the stage of imbecility, is usually richer and more instructive than the conversation of the young; for in conversation we simply distribute the treasures of memory, as a store hoarded during long years of thought and experience. He who thinks as he converses is a poor companion, as he who must earn his money before he spends any is a poor man. When an aged millionnaire makes a liberal donation it costs him nothing; he but gives out of abundance that has resulted by natural accumulation from the labors of his youth and middle life.”

An amount of work not inconsiderable is done before 25 and a vast amount is done after 40; but at neither period is it usually of the original or creative sort that best measures the mental forces.” “In early youth we follow others; in old age we follow ourselves.”

The same law applies to animals. Horses live to be about 25, and are at their best from 8 to 14” “Dogs live 9 or 10 years, and are fittest for the hunt between 2 and 6.”

Children born of parents one or both of whom are between 25 and 40, are, on the average, stronger and smarter than those born of parents one or both of whom are very much younger or older than this.” “we are most productive when we are most reproductive [18-26??].”

In an interesting paper entitled When Women Grow Old, Mrs. Blake has brought facts to show that the fascinating power of the sex is often-times retained much longer than is generally assumed.

She tells us of Aspasia, who, between the ages of 30 and 50 was the strongest intellectual force in Athens; of Cleopatra, whose golden decade for power and beauty was between 30 and 40; of Livia, who was not far from 30 when she gained the heart of Octavius; of Anne of Austria, who at 38 was thought to be the most beautiful queen in Europe; of Catherine II of Russia, who, even at the silver decade was both beautiful and imposing; of Mademoiselle Mars, the actress, whose beauty increased with years, and culminated between 30 and 45; of Madame Recamier, who, between 25 and 40, and even later, was the reigning beauty in Europe; of Ninon de I’Enclos, whose own son — brought up without knowledge of his parentage — fell passionately in love with her when she was at the age of 37, and who even on her 60th birthday received an adorer young enough to be her grandson.

The voice of our great prima donnas is at its very best between 27 and 35; but still some retains, in a degree, its strength and sweetness even in the silver decade. The voice is an index of the body in all its functions, but the decay of other functions is not so readily noted.”

As a lad of 16, Lord Bacon began to think independently on great matters; at 44, published his great work on The Advancement of Learning; at 36, published 12 of his Essays; and at 60 collected the thoughts of his life in his Organum. His old age was devoted to scientific investigation.

At the age of 29, Descartes began to map out his system of philosophy, and at 41 began its publication, and at 54 he died.

Schelling, as a boy, studied philosophy, and at 24 was a brilliant and independent lecturer, and at 27 had published many important works; at 28 was professor of philosophy and arts, and wrote his best works before 50.

Dryden, one of the exceptions to the average, did his best work when comparatively old; his Absalom was written at 50, and his Alexander’s Feast when he was nearly 70.

Dean Swift wrote his Tale of a Tub at 35, and his Gulliver’s Travels at 59.”

Charles Dickens wrote Pickwick at 25, Oliver Twist and Nicholas Nickleby before 27, Christmas Chimes at 31, David Copperfield at 38, and Dombey and Son at 35. Thus we see that nearly all his greatest works were written before he was 40; and it is amazing how little all the writings of the last 20 years of his life took hold of the popular heart, in comparison with Pickwick and David Copperfield, and how little effect the most enormous advertising and the cumulative power of a great reputation really have to give a permanent popularity to writings that do not deserve it. If Dickens had died at 40 his claim to immortality would have been as great as now, and the world of letters would have been little, if any, the loser. The excessive methodical activity of his mature and advanced life could turn off works with fair rapidity; but all his vast experience and all his earnest striving failed utterly to reach the standard of his reckless boyhood. His later works were more perfect, perhaps, judged by some canons, but the genius of Pickwick was not in them.”

Edison with his 300 patents, is not the only young inventor. All inventors are young. Colt was a boy of 21 when he invented the famous weapon that bears his name; and Goodyear began his experiments in rubber while a young man of 24, and made his first success at 38, and at 43 had brought his discovery to approximate perfection.”

The name of Bichat is one of the greatest in science, and he died at 32.”

Handel at 19 was director of the opera at Hamburg; at 20 composed his first opera; at 35 was appointed manager of the Royal Theatre at London; at 25 composed Messiah and Jephtha, and in old age and blindness his intellect was clear and his power of performance remarkable.”

Luther early displayed eloquence, and at 20 began to study Aristotle;¹ at 29 was doctor of divinity, and when he would refuse it, it was said to him that <he must suffer himself to be dignified, for that God intended to bring about great things in the church by his name>; at 34 he opposed the Indulgencies, and set up his 95 propositions; at 37 he publicly burned the Pope’s bull; at 47 he had completed his great task.”

¹ Realmente é impossível derivar prazer de ler Aristóteles antes dessa idade, senão uma ainda mais avançada!

Von Moltke between 65 and 70 directed the operation of the great war of Prussia against Austria and France. But that war was but a conclusion and consummation of military study and organization that had been going on for a quarter of a century.”

Jenner at 21 began his investigation into the difference between cow-pox and small-pox. His attention was called to the subject by the remark of a country girl, who said in his hearing that she could not have the small-pox, because she had had the cow-pox.” Varíola e varíola bovina. Bom… realmente existem ovos de Colombo!

old men, like nations, can show their treasures of art long after they have begun to die; this, indeed, is one of the sweetest and most refreshing compensations for age”

A contemporary deader in science (Huxley) has asserted that it would be well if all men of science could be strangled at the age of 60, since after that age their disposition — with possible exceptions here and there — is to become reactionary and obstructionists”

Se um homem não é belo aos 20, forte aos 30, experiente aos 40 e rico aos 50, ele jamais será belo, forte, experiente ou rico neste mundo.” Lutero

Só começamos a contar nossos anos quando já não há nada mais a ser contado” Emerson

Procrastinamos nossos trabalhos literários até termos experiência e habilidade o bastante, até um dia descobrirmos que nosso talento literário era uma efervescência juvenil que finalmente perdemos.” E.

Quem em nada tem razão aos 30, nunca terá.”

Revoluções não são feitas por homens de óculos, assim como sussurros contendo verdades novas nunca são ouvidos por quem já entrou na idade da surdez” Oliver Holmes

Como pode ser que “o povo da minha rua” seja, para tantos indivíduos, a gente mais burra de toda a Terra? E, pior ainda, que todos que o dizem pareçam estar com a razão?!

Dizem que os jovens são os únicos que não escutam a voz da razão na discussão sobre a verdadeira idade da razão ser a juventude, e não a velhice. Ou eles estão errados ou eles estão errados.

It is not in ambitious human nature to be content with what we have been enabled to achieve up to the age of 40. (…) Happiness may augment with years, because of better external conditions; and yet the highest happiness is obtained through work itself more than through the reward of work”

a wise man declared that he would like to be forever 35, and another, on being asked his age, replied that it was of little account provided that it was anywhere between 25 and 40.”

$$$: “Capacity for original work age does not have, but in compensation it has almost everything else. The querulousness of age, the irritability, the avarice are the resultants partly of habit and partly of organic and functional changes in the brain. Increasing avarice is at once the tragedy and the comedy of age; as we near the end of our voyage we become more chary of our provisions, as though the ocean and not the harbor were before us.” “our intellectual ruin very often dates from the hour when we begin to save money.” A do meu pai começou quando criança.

PORQUE SIM, PORQUE EU MANDEI – POR QUE VOCÊ É ASSIM? NÃO RESPEITA SEU PAI, NÃO? POR QUE NÃO FAZ UM DOUTORADO? POR QUE NÃO COMPRA UM CARRO? “Moral courage is rare in old age; sensitiveness to criticism and fear of opposition take the place, in the iron and wooden decades, of delight in criticism and love of opposition of the brazen and golden decades” Nostalgic UnB times…

fame like wealth makes us cautious, conservative, cowardly, since it implies the possibility of loss.”

when the intellect declines the man is obliged to be virtuous. Physical health is also needed for indulgence in many of the vices”

The decline of the moral faculties in old age may be illustrated by studying the lives of the following historic characters: Demosthenes, Cicero, Sylla, Charles V, Louis XIV, Frederic of Prussia, Napoleon (prematurely old), Voltaire, Jeffries, Dr. Johnson, Cromwell, Burke, Sheridan, Pope, Newton, Ruskin, Carlyle, Dean Swift, Chateaubriand, Rousseau, Milton, Bacon, Earl Pussell, Marlborough and Daniel Webster. In some of these cases the decline was purely physiological, in others pathological; in the majority it was a combination of both.

Very few decline in all the moral faculties. One becomes peevish, another avaricious, another misanthropic, another mean and tyrannical, another exacting and ugly, another sensual, another cold and cruelly conservative, another excessively vain and ambitious, others simply lose their moral enthusiasm and their capacity for resisting disappointment and temptation.”

There are men who in extreme age preserve their teeth sound, their hair unchanged, their complexion fresh, their appetite sharp and digestion strong and sure, and their repose sweet and refreshing, and who can walk and work to a degree that makes their children and grandchildren feel very humble; but these observed exceptions in no way invalidate the general law, which no one will dispute, that the physical powers reach their maximum between 20 and 40, and that the average man at 70 is less muscular and less capable of endurance than the average man at 40.”

For age hath opportunity no less

Than youth itself, though in another dress;

And as the evening twilight fades away,

The sky is filled with stars invisible by day.”

Longfellow

To age is granted in increasing richness the treasures of memory and the delights of recognition which most usually come from those who, at the time of the deeds whose value they recognize, were infants or unborn; only those who bury their contemporaries, can obtain, during their own lifetime, the supremacy of fame.”

POR QUE CRIANÇAS PRODÍGIO SÃO A MAIOR FALSIFICAÇÃO POSSÍVEL: “Mrs. Carlyle, when congratulated on the honors given to her husband on the delivery of his Edinburgh address, replied with a certain disdain, as though he should have been honored before; but only by a reversal of the laws of the evolution of fame shall the manifestation of genius and the recognition of genius be simultaneous.”

The high praise of contemporaries is almost insulting, since it implies that he whom they honor is but little better than themselves. Permanent fame, even in this rapid age [!!], is a plant of slow growth—first the blade; then, after a time, the ear; then, after many, many years, the full corn in the ear”

MEU COPYDESK E EU DE 2015 PARA CÁ SENTIMO-NOS ASSIM: “while the higher power of creating is disappearing, the lower, but for many the more needful, and with contemporaries more quickly appreciated, power of imitation, repetition, and routine, is increasing; we can work without working, and enjoy without striving”

O TRABALHO MATA AOS POUCOS: “An investigation made more recently by a Berlin physician into the facts and data relating to human longevity shows the average age of clergymen to be 65; of merchants, 63; clerks and farmers, 61; military men, 59; lawyers, 58; artists, 57; and medical men, 56 [!]. Statistics are given showing that medical men in England stand high in the scale of longevity. Thus, the united ages of 28 physicians who died there last year, amount to 2,354 years, giving an average of more the 84 years to each [!]. The youngest of the number was 80; the oldest, 93; 2 others were 92 and 89, respectively; 3 were 87, and 4 were 86 each; and there were also more than 50 who averaged from 74 to 75 years.”

That precocity predicts short life, and is therefore a symptom greatly to be feared by parents, has, I believe, never been questioned. (…) plants that are soon to bloom are soon to fade”

APOSTO MINHA VIDA QUE MORREREI ANTES DE A.: “It is probable that, of two individuals with precisely similar organizations and under similar circumstances, the one that develops earlier will be the first to die.”

MINHA ‘GENÉTICA’ NÃO AJUDA: “millionnaires in intellect as well as in money, who can afford to expend enormous means without becoming impoverished.”

Investigating the records of the past two centuries, Winterburn finds 213 recorded cases of acknowledged musical prodigies. None of them died before their 15th year, some attained the age of 103 — and the average duration of life was 58 — showing that, with all their abnormal precocity, they exceed the ordinary longevity by about 6%.”

an almost irresistible impulse to the art in which they are destined to excel manifests itself in future virtuosi— in poets, painters, etc., from their earliest youth.” Wieland

Uma idéia de filme bem ruim: O ESCRITOR NOVATO DE 40 ANOS!

A infância revela o homem, como a manhã revela o dia.” Milton

Madden – Infirmities of Genius (downloads)

MEMENTO À “PROFESSORA SORRISO”: “The stupidity attributed to men of genius may be really the stupidity of their parents, guardians, and biographers.”

Music and drawing appeal to the senses, attract attention, and are therefore appreciated, or at least observed by the most stupid parents, and noted even in the most superficial biographies. Philosophic and scientific thought, on the contrary, does not at once, perhaps may never, reveal itself to the senses—it is locked up in the cerebral cells; in the brain of that dull, pale youth, who is kicked for his stupidity and laughed at for his absent-mindedness, grand thoughts may be silently growing”

Newton, according to his own account, was very inattentive to his studies and low in his class, but a great adept at kite-flying, with paper lanterns attached to them, to terrify the country people, of a dark night, with the appearance of comets; and when sent to market with the produce of his mother’s farm, was apt to neglect his business, and to ruminate at an inn, over the laws of Kepler.”

This belief is strengthened by the consideration that many, perhaps the majority, of the greatest thinkers of the world seemed dull, inane, and stupid to their neighbors, not only in childhood but through their whole lives.”

It is probable, however, that nearly all cases of apparent stupidity in young geniuses are to be explained by the want of circumstances favorable to the display of their peculiar powers, or to a lack of appreciation or discernment on the part of their friends.”

As compared with the world, the most liberal curriculum is narrow; to one avenue of distinction that college opens, the world opens ten.”

GREAT precocity, like GREAT genius, is rare.”

O GÊNIO & O GENIOSO: “There is in some children a petty and morbid smartness that is sometimes mistaken for precocity, but which in truth does not deserve that distinction.”

A DOENÇA DE STEWIE: “Petty smartness is often-times a morbid symptom; it comes from a diseased brain, or from a brain in which a grave predisposition to disease exists; such children may die young, whether they do or do not early exhibit unusual quickness.”

A AMEBA SUPREMACISTA: “M.D. Delaunay has addressed to the Societé de Biologie a communication in which he takes the ground that precocity indicates biological inferiority. To prove this he states that the lower species develop more rapidly than those of a higher order; man is the slowest of all in developing and reaching maturity, and the lower orders are more precocious than the higher. As proof of this he speaks of the children of the Esquimaux, negroes, Cochin Chinese, Japanese, Arabs, etc. (…) He also states that women are more precocious than men”

THE RECURRING THEME: “The highest genius, as here and elsewhere seen, never repeats itself; very great men never have very great children; and in biological analysis, geniuses who are very precocious may be looked upon as the last of their race or of their branch—from them degeneracy is developed; and this precocity, despite their genius, may be regarded as the forerunner of that degeneracy.”

Leibniz, at 12 understood Latin authors well, and wrote a remarkable production; Gassendi, <the little doctor>, preached at 4; and at 10 wrote an important discourse; Goethe, before 10, wrote in several languages; Meyerbeer, at 5, played remarkably well on the piano; Niebuhr, at 7, was a prodigy, and at 12 had mastered 18 languages [QUÊ?!]; Michael Angelo at 19 had attained a very high reputation; at 20 Calvin was a fully-fledged reformer, and at 24 published great works on theology that have changed the destiny of the world; Jonathan Edwards, at 10, wrote a paper refuting the materiality of the soul, and at 12 was so amazingly precocious that it was predicted of him that he would become another Aristotle; at 20 Melanchthon was so learned that Erasmus exclaimed: <My God! What expectations does not Philip Melanchthon create!>.”

In order that a great man shall appear, a double line of more or less vigorous fathers and mothers must fight through the battles for existence and come out triumphant. However feeble the genius may be, his parents or grandparents are usually strong; or if not especially strong, are long-lived. Great men may have nervous if not insane relatives; but the nervous temperament holds to life longer than any other temperament. (…) in him, indeed, the branch of the race to which he belongs may reach its consummation, but the stock out of which he is evolved must be vigorous, and usually contains latent if not active genius.”

The cerebral and muscular forces are often correlated; the brain is a part of the body. This view, though hostile to the popular faith, is yet sound and supportable; a large and powerful brain in a small and feeble body is a monstrosity.”

a hundred great geniuses, chosen by chance, will be larger than a hundred dunces anywhere — will be broader, taller, and more weighty.”

In any band of workmen on a railway, you shall pick out the <boss> by his size alone: and be right 4 times out of 5.”

In certain of the arts extraordinary gifts may lift their possessor into fame with but little effort of his own, but the choicest seats in the temples of art are given only to those who have earned them by the excellence that comes from consecutive effort, which everywhere test the vital power of the man.”

One does not need to practice medicine long to learn that men die that might just as well live if they had resolved to live and that many who are invalids could become strong if they had the native or acquired will to vow that they would do so. Those who have no other quality favorable to life, whose bodily organs are nearly all diseased, to whom each day is a day of pain, who are beset by life-shortening influences, yet do live by the determination to live alone.”

the pluck of the Anglo-Saxon is shown as much on the sick-bed as in Wall Street or on the battlefield.” “When the negro feels the hand of disease pressing upon him, however gently, all his spirit leaves him.”

INNER VOW: “they live, for the same reason that they become famous; they obtain fame because they will not be obscure; they live because they will not die.”

it is the essence of genius to be automatic and spontaneous. Many a huckster or corner tradesman expends each day more force in work or fretting than a Stewart or a Vanderbilt.”

As small print most tires the eyes, so do little affairs the most disturb us” “the nearer our cares come to us the greater the friction; it is easier to govern an empire than to train a family.”

Great genius is usually industrious, for it is its nature to be active; but its movements are easy, frictionless, melodious. There are probably many school-boys who have exhausted themselves more over a prize composition than Shakespeare over Hamlet, or Milton over the noblest passages in Paradise Lost.”

So much has been said of the pernicious effects of mental labor, of the ill-health of brain-workers of all classes, and especially of clergymen, that very few were prepared to accept the statement that the clergy of this country and of England lived longer than any other class, except farmers; and very naturally a lurking fallacy was suspected. Other observers, who have since given special attention to the subject, have more than confirmed this conclusion, and have shown that clergymen are longer lived than farmers.” “A list of 10,000 is sufficient and more than sufficient for a generalization; for the second 5,000 did nothing more than confirm the result obtained by the first. It is fair and necessary to infer that if the list were extended to 10,000, 20,000, or even 100,000, the average would be found about the same.” “In their manifold duties their whole nature is exercised — not only brain and muscle in general, but all, or nearly all, the faculties of the brain — the religious, moral, and emotional nature, as well as the reason. Public speaking, when not carried to the extreme of exhaustion, is the best form of gymnastics that is known; it exercises every inch of a man, from the highest regions of the brain to the smallest muscle.” “The average income of the clergymen of the leading denominations of this country in active service as pastors of churches (including salary, house rent, wedding fees, donations, etc.), is between $800 and $1000, which is probably not very much smaller than the net income of all other professional classes. Furthermore, the income of clergymen in active service is collected and paid with greater certainty and regularity, and less labor of collection on their part, than the income of any other class except, perhaps, government officials; then, again, their earnings, whether small or great, come at once, as soon as they enter their profession, and is not, as with other callings, built up by slow growth.” “Merchants now make, always have made, and probably always will make, most of the money of the world; but business is attended with so much risk and uncertainty, and consequent anxiety, that merchants die sooner than clergymen, and several years sooner than physicians and lawyers.” “During the past 15 years, there has been a tendency, which is now rapidly increasing, for the best endowed and best cultured minds of our colleges to enter other professions, and the ministry has been losing, while medicine, business, and science have been gaining.”

There are those who come into life thus weighted down, not by disease, not by transmitted poison in the blood, but by the tendency to disease, by a sensitiveness to evil and enfeebling forces that seems to make almost every external influence a means of torture; as soon as they are born, debility puts its terrible bond upon them, and will not let them go, but plays the tyrant with them until they die. Such persons in infancy are often on the point of dying, though they may not die; in childhood numberless physical ills attack them and hold them down, and, though not confining them to home, yet deprive them, perhaps, of many childish delights; in early maturity an army of abnormal nervous sensations is waiting for them, the gauntlet of which they must run if they can; and throughout life every function seems to be an enemy.

The compensations of this type of organization are quite important and suggestive, and are most consolatory to sufferers. Among these compensations, this perhaps is worthy of first mention — that this very fineness of temperament, which is the source of nervousness, is also the source of exquisite pleasure. Highly sensitive natures respond to good as well as evil factors in their environment, salutary as well as pernicious stimuli are ever operating upon them, and their capacity for receiving, for retaining, and for multiplying the pleasures derived from external stimuli is proportionally greater than that of cold and stolid organizations: if they are plunged into a deeper hell, they also rise to a brighter heaven (…) art, literature, travel, social life, and solitude, pour out on them their selected treasures; they live not one life but many lives, and all joy is for them variously multiplied. To such temperaments the bare consciousness of living, when life is not attended by excessive exhaustion or by pain, or when one’s capacity for mental or muscular toil is not too closely tethered, is often-times a supreme felicity. The true psychology of happiness is gratification of faculties, and when the nervous are able to indulge even moderately and with studied caution and watchful anxiety their controlling desires of the nobler order, they may experience an exquisiteness of enjoyment that serves, in a measure, to reward them for their frequent distresses.”

The physician who collects his fee before his patient has quite recovered, does a wise thing, since it will be paid more promptly and more gratefully than after the recovery is complete.”

Nervous organizations are rarely without reminders of trouble that they escape — their occasional wakefulness and indigestion, their headaches and backaches and neuralgias, their disagreeable susceptibility to all evil influences that may act on the constitution, keep them ever in sight of the possibility of wliat they might have been, and suggest to them sufferings that others endure, but from which they are spared.”

While it is true that pain is more painful than its absence is agreeable, so that we think more of what is evil than of what is good in our environment, and dwell longer on the curses than the blessings of our lot, and fancy all others happier than ourselves, yet it is true likewise that our curses make the blessings more blissful by contrast”

There are those who though never well are yet never sick, always in bondage to debility and pain, from which absolute escape is impossible, yet not without large liberty of labor and of thought” “Such persons may be exposed to every manner of poison, may travel far and carelessly with recklessness, even may disregard many of the prized rules of health; may wait upon and mingle with the sick, and breathe for long periods the air of hospitals or of fever-infested dwellings, and come out apparently unharmed.”

This recuperative tendency of the nervous system is stronger, often-times, than the accumulating poison of disease, and overmasters the baneful effects of unwise medication and hygiene. Between the ages of 25 and 35, especially, the constitution often consolidates as well as grows, acquires power as well as size, and throws off, by a slow and invisible evolution, the subtile habits of nervous disease, over which treatment the most judicious and persistent seems to have little or no influence. There would appear to be organizations which at certain times of life must needs pass through the dark valley of nervous depression, and who cannot be saved therefrom by any manner of skill or prevision; who must not only enter into this valley, but, having once entered, cannot turn back: the painful, and treacherous, and agonizing horror, wisdom can but little shorten, and ordinary misdoing cannot make perpetual; they are as sure to come out as to go in; health and disease move in rhythm; the tides in the constitution are as demonstrable as the tides of the ocean, and are sometimes but little more under human control.” It is an important consolation for those who are in the midst of an attack of sick-headache, for example, that the natural history of the disease is in their favor. In a few days at the utmost, in a few hours frequently, the storm will be spent, and again the sky will be clear, and perhaps far clearer than before the storm arose.” nearly all severe pain is periodic, intermittent, rhythmical: the violent neuralgias are never constant, but come and go by throbs, and spasms, and fiercely-darting agonies, the intervals of which are absolute relief. After the exertion expended in attacks of pain, the tired nerve-atoms must need repose. Sometimes the cycles of debility, alternating with strength, extend through long years — a decade of exhaustion being followed by a decade of vigor.”

There are those who pass through an infancy of weakness and suffering and much pain, and through a childhood and early manhood in which the game of life seems to be a losing one, to a healthy and happy maturity; all that is best in their organizations seems to be kept in reserve, as though to test their faith, and make the boon of strength more grateful when it comes.”

Perfect health is by no means the necessary condition of long life; in many ways, indeed, it may shorten life; grave febrile and inflammatory diseases are invited and fostered by it, and made fatal, and the self-guarding care, without which great longevity is almost impossible, is not enforced or even suggested.” “Headaches, and backaches, and neuralgias, are safety-valves through which nerve-perturbations escape, and which otherwise might become centres of accumulated force, and break forth with destruction beyond remedy. The liability to sudden attacks of any form of pain, or distress, or discomfort, under overtoil or from disregard of natural law, is, so far forth, a blessing to its possessor, making imperative the need of foresight and practical wisdom in the management of health, and warning us in time to avoid irreparable disaster. The nervous man hears the roar of the breakers from afar, while the strong and phlegmatic steers boldly, blindly on, until he is cast upon the shore, often-times a hopeless wreck.”

A neurastenia também tem o nome de “cãibra do escritor”. No trecho a seguir, a referida “cãibra” está mais próxima de um surto neurastênico agudo, do qual, defende Beard, o ‘nervoso típico’ está protegido: “Those who are sensitive, and nervous, and delicate, whom every external or internal irritation injures, and who appreciate physical injury instantly, as soon as the exciting cause begins to act, cannot write long enough to get writer’s cramp; they are warned by uneasiness or pain, by weariness, local or general, and are forced to interrupt their labors before there has been time to receive a fixed or persistent disease.” “had they been feeble they would have been unable to persevere in the use of the pen so as to invite permanent nervous disorder.” Without such warnings they might have continued in a life of excessive friction and exhausting worry, and never have suspected that permanent invalidism was in waiting for them, until too late to save themselves either by hygiene or medication. When a man is prostrated nervously, all the forces of nature rush to his rescue; but the strong man, once fully fallen, rallies with difficulty, and the health-evolving powers may find a task to which, aided or unaided, they are inadequate.”

The history of the world’s progress from savagery to barbarism, from barbarism to civilization, and, in civilization, from the lower degrees towards the higher, is the history of increase in average longevity, corresponding to and accompanied by increase of nervousness. Mankind has grown to be at once more delicate and more enduring, more sensitive to weariness and yet more patient of toil, impressible but capable of bearing powerful irritation: we are woven of finer fibre, which, though apparently frail, yet outlasts the coarser, as rich and costly garments often-times wear better than those of rougher workmanship.”

Among our educated classes there are nervous invalids in large numbers, who have never known by experience what it is to be perfectly well or severely ill, whose lives have been not unlike a march through a land infested by hostile tribes, that ceaselessly annoy in front and on flank, without ever coming to a decisive conflict, and who, in advanced age, seem to have gained wariness, and toughness, and elasticity, by the long discipline of caution, of courage, and of endurance; and, after having seen nearly all their companions, whose strength they envied, struck down by disease, are themselves spared to enjoy, it may be, their best days, at a time when, to the majority, the grasshopper becomes a burden, and life each day a visibly losing conflict with death.” “the irritability, the sensitiveness, the capriciousness of the constitution, between the ages of 15 and 45, have, in a degree, disappeared, and the system has acquired a certain solidity, steadiness, and power; and thus, after a long voyage against opposing winds and fretting currents, they enter the harbor in calmness and peace.”

MEU SÉCULO ME IMPEDE DE COMPARTILHAR DESTE OTIMISMO: “It may be doubted whether, in the history of disease of any kind, there has been made so decided and so satisfactory an advance as has been made within the last quarter of a century, in the treatment of nervousness in its various manifestations.” “One great factor in the modern treatment of these functional nervous diseases is individualization, no two cases being treated precisely alike, but each one being studied by itself alone. Among wise physicians, the day for wholesale treatment of nervous diseases can never return. The result of all this progress is, that thousands who formerly would have suffered all their lives, and with no other relief except that which comes from the habitual addiction to narcotics, can now be cured, or permanently relieved, or at least put into working order where they are most useful and happy.” if all new modes of action of nerve-force are to be so many added pathways to sorrow,—if each fresh discovery or invention is to be matched by some new malady of the nerves,—if insanity and epilepsy and neurasthenia, with their retinue of neuroses, through the cruel law of inheritance, are to be organized in families, descending in fiery streams throught the generations, we yet have this assurance,—that science, with keen eyes and steps that are not slow, is seeking and is finding means of prevention and of relief.”

5. PHYSICAL FUTURE OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE [epílogo cagado e ‘poliânico’ totalmente desnecessário]

This increase of neuroses cannot be arrested suddenly; it must yet go on for at least 25 or 50 years, when all of these disorders shall be both more numerous and more heterogenous than at present. But side by side with these are already developing signs of improved health and vigor that cannot be mistaken; and the time must come—not unlikely in the first half of the 20th century—when there will be a halt or retrograde movement in the march of nervous diseases, and while the absolute number of them may be great, relatively to the population, they will be less frequent than now; the evolution of health, and the evolution of nervousness, shall go on side by side.”

Health is the offspring of relative wealth.” “febrile and inflammatory disorders, plagues, epidemics, great accidents and catastrophes even, visit first and last and remain longest with those who have no money.” the absence of all but forced vacations—the result, and one of the worst results, of poverty—added to the corroding force of envy, and the friction of useless struggle,—all these factors that make up or attend upon simple want of money, are in every feature antagonistic to health and longevity. Only when the poor become absolute paupers, and the burden of life is taken from them and put upon the State or public charity, are they in a condition of assured health and long life.” “The inmates of our public institutions of charity of the modern kind are often the happiest of men, blessed with an environment, on the whole, far more salubrious than that to which they have been accustomed, and favorably settled for a serene longevity.” “For the same reasons, well-regulated jails are healthier than many homes, and one of the best prescriptions for the broken-down and distressed is for them to commit some crime.”

A fat bank account tends to make a fat man; in all countries, amid all stages of civilization and semi-barbarism, the wealthy classes have been larger and heavier than the poor.” “In India this coincidence of corpulence and opulence has been so long observed that it is instinctively assumed; and certain Brahmins, it is said, in order to obtain the reputation of wealth, studiously cultivate a diet adapted to make them fat.”

The majority of our Pilgrim Fathers in New England, and of the primitive settlers in the Southern and Middle States, really knew but little of poverty in the sense in which the term is here used. They were an eminently thrifty people, and brought with them both the habits and the results of thrift to their homes in the New World. Poverty as here described is of a later evolution, following in this country, as in all others, the pathway of a high civilization.”

the best of all antidotes and means of relief for nervous disease is found in philosophy.” Thus it is in part that Germany, which in scientific and philosophic discovery does the thinking for all nations, and which has added more to the world’s stock of purely original ideas than any other country, Greece alone excepted, is less nervous than any other nation; thus it is also that America, which in the same department has but fed on the crumbs that fall from Germany’s table, has developed a larger variety and number of functional nervous diseases than all other nations combined.”

The capacity for growth in any given direction, physical or mental, is always limited; no special gift of body or mind can be cultivated beyond a certain point, however great the tenderness and care bestowed upon it.”

In man, that higher operation of the faculties which we call genius is hereditary, transmissible, running through and in families as demonstrably as pride or hay-fever, the gifts as well as the sins of the fathers being visited upon the children and the children’s children; general talent, or some special talent, in one or both parents rises and expands in immediate or remote offspring, and ultimately flowers out into a Socrates, a Shakespeare, a Napoleon, and then falls to the ground”

That a single family may rise to enduring prominence and power, it is needful that through long generations scores of families shall endure poverty and pain and struggle with cruel surroundings”

The America of the future, as the America of the present, must be a nation where riches and culture are restricted to the few—to a body, however, the personnel of which is constantly changing.”

Inebriety being a type of the nervous diseases of the family to which it belongs, may properly be here defined and differentiated from the vice and habit of drinking with which it is confounded. The functional nervous disease inebriety, or dipsomania, differs from the simple vice of drinking to excess in these respects:

(…)

The simple habit of drinking even to an extreme degree may be broken up by pledges or by word promises or by quiet resolution, but the disease inebriety can be no more cured in this way than can neuralgia or sick-headache, or neurasthenia, or hay-fever, or any of the family of diseases to which it belongs.

(…)

Of the nervous symptoms that precede, or accompany, or follow inebriety, are tremors, hallucinations, insomnia, mental depressions, and attacks of trance, to which I give the term alcoholic trance.

(…)

even drunkenness in a parent or grandparent may develop in children epilepsy or insanity, or neurasthenia or inebriety.

(…)

The attacks of inebriety may be periodical; they may appear once a month, and with the same regularity as chills and fever or sick-headache, and far more regularly than epilepsy, and quite independent of any external temptation or invitation to drink, and oftentimes are as irresistible and beyond the control of will as spasms of epilepsy or the pains of neuralgia or the delusions of insanity. Inebriety is not so frequent among the classes that drink excessively as among those who drink but moderately, although their ancestors may have been intemperate; it is most frequent in the nervous and highly organized classes, among the brain-workers, those who have lived indoors; there is more excessive drinking West and South than in the East, but more inebriety in the East.”

probably no country outside of China uses, in proportion to population, so much opium as America, and as the pains and nervousness and debility that tempt to the opium habit are on the increase, the habit must inevitably develop more rapidly in the future than in the past; of hay-fever there must, in a not very distant time, be at least 100,000 cases in America, and in the 20th century hundreds of thousands of insane and neurasthenics.”

There must be, also, an increasing number of people who cannot bear severe physical exercise. Few facts relating to this subject are more instructive than this — the way in which horseback-riding is borne by many in modern times. In our country, I meet with large numbers who cannot bear the fatigue of horseback-riding, which used to be looked upon — possibly is looked upon to-day — as one of the best forms of exercise, and one that is recommended as a routine by physicians who are not discriminating in dealing with nervously-exhausted patients.” The greatest possible care and the best judgment are required in prescribing and adapting horseback-riding to nervous individuals of either sex; it is necessary to begin cautiously, to go on a walk for a few moments; and even after long training excess is followed by injury, in many cases.”

ANTIRRUBENISMO: “If either extreme is to be chosen, it is well, on the whole, to err on the side of rest rather than on the side of excess of physical exertion.”

Why Education is behind other Sciences and Arts? Schools and colleges everywhere are the sanctuaries of medievalism, since their aim and their powers are more for retaining what has been discovered than for making new discoveries; consequently we cannot look to institutions or organizations of education for the reconstruction of that system by which they enslave the world and are themselves enslaved. It is claimed by students of Chinese character that that great nation has been kept stationary through its educational policy — anchored for centuries to competitive examinations which their strong nerves can bear while they make no progress. In a milder way, and in divers and fluctuating degrees, all civilized nations take their inspiration from China, since it is the office and life of teaching to look backward rather than forward; in the relations of men as in physics, force answers to force, and as the first, like the second childhood is always reactionary, a class of youths tend by their collective power to bring the teacher down more than he can lift them up. Only conservative natures are fond of teaching; organizations are always in the path of their own reconstruction; mediocrity begets mediocrity, attracts it, and is attracted by it. Whence all our institutions become undying centres of conservatism. The force that reconstructs an organization must come from outside the body that is to be reconstructed.”

The Gospel of Rest. The gospel of work must make way for the gospel of rest. The children of the past generation were forced, driven, stimulated to work, and in forms most repulsive, the philosophy being that utility is proportioned to pain; that to be happy is to be doing wrong, hence it is needful that studies should not only be useless but repelling, and should be pursued by those methods which, on trial, proved the most distressing, wearisome, and saddening. That this philosophy has its roots in a certain truth psychology allows, but the highest wisdom points also to another truth, the need of the agreeable; our children must be driven from study and all toil, and in many instances coaxed, petted, and hired to be idle; we must drive them away from schools as our fathers drove them towards the schools; one must be each moment awake and alive and active, to keep a child from stealthily learning to read; our cleverest offspring loves books more than play, and truancies [matar aula] and physical punishments are far rarer than half a century ago.”

From investigations at Darmstadt, Paris, and Neuremburg, Dr. Treichler concludes that one-third of the pupils suffer more or less from some form of headache. It is not probable that these headaches in children are the result purely of intellectual exertion, but of intellectual exertion combined with bad air, with the annoyances and excitements and worries, the wasting and rasping anxieties of school life.”

Even studies that are agreeable and in harmony with the organs, and to which tastes and talents are irresistibly inclined, are pursued at an expenditure of force which is far too great for many nervously organized temperaments. I have lately had under my care a newly married lady who for some years has been in a state of neurasthenia of a severe character, and of which the exciting cause was devotion to music at home; long hours at the piano, acting on a neurasthenic temperament, given to her by inheritance, had developed morbid fears and all the array of nervous symptoms that cluster around them, so that despite her fondness for a favorite art she was forced to abandon it, and from that time was dated her improvement, though at the time that I was called in to see her she had yet a long way to travel before she would reach even approximate health.”

The reconstruction of the principles of evidence, the primary need of all philosophy, which cannot much longer be delayed, is to turn nearly all that we call history into myth, and destroy and overthrow beyond chance of resurrection all but a microscopic fraction of the world’s reasoning. Of the trifle that is saved, the higher wisdom of coming generations will know and act upon the knowledge that a still smaller fraction is worthy of being taught, or even remembered by any human being.” A tragédia é que uma filosofia do conhecimento só pode vir depois da burra e didática memorização de fatos tão lineares quanto sem nexo. Ou seja: chega-se ao ideal da educação quando ela já está finalizada ou, antes, só se chega ao suposto ideal, descobrindo-se que o começo devera ter sido diferente, quando o começo se sedimentou. Pode-se ensinar certo, mas não se pode aprender certo!

The fact that anything is known, and true and important for some is of itself no reason why all should know or attempt to know it”

Our children are coaxed, cajoled, persuaded, enticed, bluffed, bullied, and driven into the study of ancient and modern tongues; though the greatest men in all languages, whose writings are the inspiration to the study of languages themselves knew no language but their own; and, in all the loftiest realms of human creative power the best work has been done, and is done today, by those who are mostly content with the language in which they were cradled.” “of all accomplishments, the ability to speak and write in many tongues is the poorest barometer of intellectual force, and the least satisfactory for happiness and practical use”

Shakespeare, drilled in modern gymnasia and universities, might have made a fair school-master, but would have kept the world out of Hamlet and Othello.”

Of the sciences multiplying everyday, but few are to be known by any one individual; he who has studied enough of the systematized knowledge of men, and looked far enough in various directions in which it leads to know which his tastes and environment best adapt him to follow, and who resolutely obeys his tastes, even in opposition to all teachers,(*) philosophers, and scholars, has won the battle of life” Mementos: Jabur, Edsono (um representante dos jornalistas e um dos pseudossociofiloepistemólogos)

the study of the art of thinking, of the philosophy of reasoning, in mathematics, poetry, science, literature, or language, is the best exercise for those who would gain this mental discipline”

O coach está para para o acadêmico de hoje como os sofistas estavam para os filósofos jônicos e eleatas da Grécia Antiga: é um sintoma da crise e insustentabilidade desse modo de conhecimento, mas tampouco chega a lugar algum. Prenuncia um tipo de Sócrates que vem aí?

In all spheres of thought, the most hospitable of intellects, the most generous in their welcome to new truths or dreams of truth are those who have once learned the great secret of life—how to forget.”

GUSMÓN: “Conscientious professors in colleges often-times exhort their graduates to keep up some of the studies of college life during the activity of years — if those graduates are ever to do much in the world, it is by doing precisely NOT what they are thus advised to do.”

ESPECIALISTA AGRAMATICAL: “The details of geography, of mathematics, and of languages, ancient as well as modern, of most of the sciences, ought, and fortunately are, forgotten almost as soon as learned, save by those who become life-experts in these special branches”

The systems of Froebel and Pestalozzi, and the philosophy of Rousseau in his Émile, analyzed and formulated in physiological language is, in substance, that it costs less force and is more natural and easy to get into a house through the doors, than to break down the walls, or come through the roof, or climb up from the cellar. Modern education is burglary; we force ideas into the brain through any other pathway and every other way except the doors and windows, and then we are astonished that they are unwelcome and so quickly expelled.”

they see with the mind’s eye, though we close their eyelids.”

Medicine has been taught in all our schools in a way the most unphilosophical, and despite all the modifications and improvements of late years, by bedside teaching and operations and demonstrations, the system of medical education is in need of reconstruction from the foundation; it begins where it should end; it feeds the tree through the leaves and branches instead of through the roots; physiology itself is taught unphysiologically; the conventional, hereditary, orthodox style is, for the student to take systematic text-books, go through them systematically from beginning to end, and attend systematic lectures, reserving study at the bedside for the middle and later years of his study; the didactic instruction coming first, and the practical instruction and individual observation coming last. Psychology and experience require that this should be reversed; the first years of the medical student’s life should be given to the bedside, the laboratory and dissecting room, and the principles of systematic instruction should be kept for the last years, and then used very sparingly. The human mind does not work systematically, and all new truths enter most easily and are best retained when they enter in psychological order. System in text-books is a tax on the nerve-force, costly both of time and of energy, and it is only by forgetting what has been taught them in the schools that men even attain eminence in the practice of medicine.

The first lesson and the first hour of medical study should be at the bedside of the sick man; before reading a book or hearing a lecture, or even knowing of the existence of a disease, the student should see the disease, and then, after having seen it and been instructed in reference to it, his reading will be a thousand-fold more profitable than it would had he read first and seen the case afterwards. Every practitioner with any power of analyzing his own mental operations knows that his reading of disease is always more intelligent after he has had a case, or while he has a case under treatment under his own eyes, and he knows also that all his reading of abstract, systematic books is of but little worth to him when he meets his first case, unless he re-read, and if he do so, he will find that he has forgotten all he has read before, and he will find, also, that he never understood what he read, and perhaps thoroughly and accurately recited on examination. By this method one shall learn more what is worth learning of medicine in one month, than now we learn in a year, under the common system, and what is learned will be in hand and usable, and will be obtained at incommensurably less cost of energy, as well as of time. So-called <systematic instruction> is the most extravagant form of instruction and is really no instruction, since the information which it professes to give does not enter the brain of the student, though the words in which it is expressed may be retained, and recited or written out on examination. I read the other day an opening lecture by a professor in one of our chief medical schools. I noticed that the professor apologized for being obliged to begin with what was dry and uninteresting, but stated that in a systematic course it was necessary to do so. It will not be his fault only, but rather the fault of the machinery of which he is one of the wheels, if the students who listen to and take notes of and worry over his lecture, never know what he means; 5 minutes study of a case of rheumatism or an inflamed joint, under the aid of an expert instructor, will give a person more knowledge of inflammation, in relation to the practice of medicine, than a year of lectures on that subject.

I make particular reference to medical education, not because it is the leading offender, but because it has made greater progress, perhaps, than almost any other kind of modern education.” and the time will come when men shall read with amusement and horror of intelligent, human, and responsible young men beginning a medical course by listening to systematic abstract lectures.” 140 anos e nada…

In theological seminaries, students are warned about preaching, or speaking, or lecturing during their 1st or 2nd year, and tied and chained down to lectures and homiletics, and theology and history” Nothing David (or Solomon) would be good at…

Aside from the study of language, which is a separate matter, the first day’s work in a theological school should be the writing or preparing a sermon, and homiletics should follow — not precede.”

All languages should be learned as we learn our own language — not through grammars or dictionaries, but through conversation and reading, the grammars and dictionaries being reserved for a more advanced stage of investigation and for reference, just as in the language in which we were born.”

I applaud the English because they boast of their ignorance of American geography; of what worth to them, of what worth to most of us whether Montana be in California, or Alaska be or be not the capital of Arizona?”

The Harvard professor who says that when students enter his room his desire is, not to find out what they knew, but what they did not know, ought to have been born in the 20th century, and possibly in the 30th, for his philosophy is so sound and so well grounded psychology that he cannot hope to have it either received or comprehended in his lifetime; and the innovation that Harvard has just promised, of having the teacher recite and the pupils ask the questions, is one of the few gleams of light in the great darkness by which this whole subject of education has been enveloped.”

EDSONO’S EXQUISITE CLASS OF TORTURE (2009): Lectures, except they be of a clinical sort [belo troca-trilho!], in which appeals are made to the senses, cost so much in nerve-force, in those that listen to them, that the world cannot much longer afford to indulge in them and the information they give is of a most unsatisfactory sort, since questioning, and interruption, and repetition, and reviewing are scarcely possible (…) The human brain is too feeble and limited an organ to catch a new idea when first stated, and if the idea be not new it is useless to state it.”

ServIce on dem and us

dire dim straits

a threat!

One of the pleasantest memories in my life, is that, during my medical education, I did not attend one lecture out of 12 — save those of a clinical sort — that were delivered (brilliant and able as some of them were) in the college where I studied, and my regret is that the poverty of medical literature at that time compelled me to attend even those. All the long lectures in my academical course at the college were useful to me — and I think were useful to all my classmates — only by enforcing the necessity, and inspiring the habit of enduring passively and patiently what we know to be in all respects painful and pernicious, providing we have no remedy.”

Original thinkers and discoverers, and writers are objects of increasing worry on the part of their relatives and friends lest they break down from overwork; whereas, it is not so much these great thinkers as the young school-girl or bank clerk that needs our sympathy.”

In England during the last summer, I attempted, without any human beings on whom to experiment, to explain some of the theories and philosophies of trance before an audience composed of the very best physiologists and psychologists of Europe, and with no hetter success than at home. If I had had but one out of the 20 or 30 cases on whom I have lately experimented, to illustrate and enforce my views, there would have been, I am sure, no difficulty in making clear not only the facts, but what is of chief importance, the interpretation of the facts.”

Modern competitive examinations are but slightly in advance of the system of recitations and lectures. They seem to have been invented by someone who wished to torture rather than benefit mankind, and whose philosophy was: whatever is disagreeable is useful, and that the temporary accumulation of facts is true wisdom, and an accurate measure of cerebral force.”

Knowing by heart is not knowing at all” Montaigne

the greatest fool may often pass the best examination [Exemplo contemporâneo: ‘Patrick Damascenos’ se tornando médicos diplomados por universidades federais – no mínimo os minions esquecem o que aprendem em História após 30 dias (‘conteúdo inútil’, etc.), embora apostilas do Sigma ou Galois nunca fossem lá muito confiáveis, para início de conversa…]; no wise man can always tell what he knows; ideas come by suggestion rather than by order; you must wait for their appearing at their own time and not at ours” “he who can always tell what he knows, knows little worth knowing.”

The first signs of ascension, as of declension, in nations are seen in women.”

palace cars and elevators and sewing machines are types of recent improvements that help to diminish the friction of modern life. Formerly [!!!] inventors increased the friction of our lives and made us nervous.” E que diabos eram palace cars?

The Germanization of America — by which I mean the introduction through very extensive immigration, of German habits and character — is a phenomenon which can now be observed, even by the dullest and nearest-sighted, in the large cities of the Northern portion of our country.” O nazismo foi o último a chegar.

tending to displace pernicious whiskey by less pernicious beer and wine, setting the example of coolness and calmness, which the nervously exhausted American very much needs.”

Tempos em que valia a pena se conservar: “We have been all English in our conservatism, a quality which has increased in proportion as we have gained anything of wealth or character or any manifestation of force whatsoever, that is worth preserving.” Hoje os americanos são azeitonas vencidas em conserva.

after such a vacation one needed a vacation.”

The nervousness of the third generation of Germans [?] is a fact that comes to my professional notice more and more.”

Not only are the <ha, ha’s> [RONALDINHO SOCCER!], of which so much [mundial] SPORT was once made, heard much less frequently than formerly in public meetings, but there is a positive ease and attractiveness to very many of the English speakers in and out of Parliament, in the pulpit and on the platform, that is thoroughly American” it was proved that if all the [congress] speakers continued to speak as often and as elaborately as they had been speaking, a number of years would be required before they could adjourn [se significa entrar em recesso ou perder a próxima eleição, deixo a critério do leitor de criptas!].”

the forces that renovate and save are mightier far than the forces that emasculate and destroy.”

Não sei se chamo o comentário de genial ou estúpido: “The American race, it is said, is dying out; but there is no American race. Americans are the union of European races and peoples, as lakes are fed by many streams, and can only disappear with the exhaustion of its sources. Europe must die before America. In sections of America, as in New England, and in large cities, the number of children to a family in certain classes is too small for increase of population.” Uma eterna sucessão de sins e nãos no melhor estilo Cleber Machado!

Felizmente o Deus Europeu-Ocidental morreu e a Ásia com seu rostinho de beldade imortal de 20 aninhos vem aí…

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