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Quotes - March 2017


Quotes - March 2017

Alexei Muravsky

“When a man raises himself from the lowest condition in society to the highest, mankind pay him the tribute of their admiration; when he accomplishes this elevation by native energy, guided by prudence and wisdom, their admiration is increased; but when his course, onward and upward, excellent in itself, furthermore proves a possible, what had hitherto been regarded as an impossible, reform, then he becomes a burning and a shining light, on which the aged may look with gladness, the young with hope, and the down-trodden, as a representative of what they may themselves become. To such a man, dear reader, it is my privilege to introduce you. The life of Frederick Douglas, recorded in the pages which follow, is not merely an example of self-elevation under the most adverse circumstances; it is, moreover, a noble vindication of the highest aims of the American anti-slavery movement. The real object of that movement is not only to disenthrall, it is, also, to bestow upon the Negro the exercise of all those rights, from the possession of which he has been so long debarred.”

- James Mccune Smith, Introduction of My Bondage and My Freedom

“Chase-away selection theory. The evolution of extreme male ornaments and displays may originate with exploitation of females’ pre-existing sensory biases. If sensory exploitation by males reduces female fitness, the stage is set for a cycle in which increased female resistance to male displays leads to ever greater exaggeration of those displays.”

- John Alcock, Animal Behaviour 10th Edition

““Then you should say what you mean,” the March Hare went on. “I do,” Alice hastily replied; “at least – at least I mean what I say – that’s the same thing, you know.” “Not the same thing a bit!” said the Hatter. “Why, you might just as well say that ‘I see what I eat’ is the same thing as ‘I eat what I see’!””

- Lewis Carroll via David W. Carroll, Psychology of Language 5th Edition

“Research suggests that risky behaviours in adolescence have less to do with hormonal imbalances than with changes in our brain’s dopamine reward system combined with the cortical architecture that supports hyperrational decision-making creating the positive bias that is dominant during the teen years.”

- Daniel J. Siegel, Brainstorm: The Power and Purpose of the Teenage Brain

“Perfection of character: to live your last day, every day, without frenzy, or sloth, or pretence.”

- Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

“It is well known that infants as soon as they are born tend to use fist, fingers, thumbs in stimulation of the oral erotogenic zone, in satisfaction of the instincts at that zone, and also in quiet union. It is also well known that after a few months infants of either sex become fond of playing with dolls, and that most mothers allow their infants some special object and expect them to become, as it were, addicted to such objects. There is a relationship between these two sets of phenomena that are separated by a time interval, and a study of the development from the earlier into the later can be profitable, and can make use of important clinical material that has been somewhat neglected.”

- Donald W. Winnicott, Playing and Reality

“The programmer, like the poet, works only slightly removed from pure thought-stuff. He builds his castles in the air, from air, creating by exertion of the imagination. Few media of creation are so flexible, so easy to polish and rework, so readily capable of realizing grand conceptual structures.”

- Frederick P. Brooks via Brian W. Kernighan, Understanding the Digital World: What You Need to Know about Computers, the Internet, Privacy, and Security

“The knowledge of men is especially difficult for two reasons: first, because it cannot be learned from books; second because the characteristics of the individual in peace are completely changed in war. Man reacts differently in war than he does in peace, therefore he must be handled differently. For this reason we cannot learn, in peacetimes, the psychology of war. It is my belief that no one can give a prescription for a correct application of the principle of psychology in war. The only thing of which we are certain is this: the psychology of the soldier is always important. No commander lacking in this inner knowledge of his men can accomplish great things.”

- Captain Adolf Von Schell, Battle Leadership

Observations: Facing the enemy, the reconnaissance detachment commander becomes conscious of his heavy responsibilities. Every mistake means casualties, perhaps the lives of his men. Therefore any advance must be made with extreme caution and deliberation. Taking advantage of all cover, the detachment should keep off the roads and repeatedly examine the terrain with field glasses. The detachment should be organized in considerable depth. Before crossing open stretches of terrain fire support must be arranged for. In entering a village, advance with part of the unit on the left, the rest on the right of the houses and with fingers on the triggers. Report observations rapidly, for delay lessens the value of any information. Train in time of peace to maintain direction at night with the aid of a luminous dial compass. Train in difficult, trackless, wooded terrain. War makes extremely heavy demands on the soldier’s strength and nerves. For this reason make heavy demands on your men in peacetime exercises.”

- Field Marshal Erwin Rommel, Infantry Attacks

“There were eight of us who joined The Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada just one month before the invasion. We had only arrived in England in March, 1944 and were under canvas doing group training on the outskirts of Aldershot in May when the sergeant major requested eight volunteers to go to a regiment…”

- Rifleman Bill Ross via Charles D. McGregor, Prologue of In Peace Prepared: The Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada From 1950 to the 21st Century

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