Fanatics don't laugh at themselves; laughter is by definition heretical, unless used cruelly, turned outwards against an opponent or enemy. Bigots can't laugh. True believers don't laugh. Their idea of laughter is a satirical cartoon pillorying an opposition person or idea. Tyrants and oppressors don't laugh at themselves, and don't tolerate laughter at themselves....might have some more to say on this later.
Laughter is a very powerful thing, and only the civilized, the liberated, the free person can laugh at herself, himself.
- Doris Lessing, from "Prisons We Choose to Live Inside" (p. 46), print edition of the 1986 CBC Massey Lectures
Monday, March 08, 2010
Reading CC today reminded me of something else I'd recently read: