Cornel West Quotes

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Image, If you’ve got on the one hand death, dogmatism, domination, and on

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If you've got on the one hand death, dogmatism, domination, and on the other you've got desire in the face of death, dialogue in the face of dogmatism, democracy in the face of domination, then philosophy itself becomes a critical disposition of wrestling with desire in the face of death, wrestling with dialogue in the face of dogmatism, and wrestling with democracy, trying to keep alive a very fragile democratic experiment.

Cornel West

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Image, And so the question becomes, what you do in the meantime? And

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And so the question becomes, what you do in the meantime? And you go - if you're forever on the move, especially in the life of the mind; forever reading veraciously, writing, speaking, lecturing, trying to unsettle minds, trying to touch souls, trying to encourage and inspire, on the one hand, but also trying to unhouse and unnerve people, so that they have to reexamine themselves, society and the world on the others. There's tremendous joy in it.

Cornel West

Image, As a Christian, I got something the world didn’t give me, the

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As a Christian, I got something the world didn't give me, the world can't take away, so I find joy that can never be reduced to anything. So I come into classroom on fire. I'm on fire for learning. I'm on fire for education, a paideia in the deepest sense of paideia, trying to get young people to shift from the superficial to the substantial, the shift from the bling-bling to letting freedom reign in their minds and hearts and souls.

Cornel West

Image, The country is in deep trouble. We’ve forgotten that a rich life

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The country is in deep trouble. We've forgotten that a rich life consists fundamentally of serving others, trying to leave the world a little better than you found it. We need the courage to question the powers that be, the courage to be impatient with evil and patient with people, the courage to fight for social justice. In many instances we will be stepping out on nothing, and just hoping to land on something. But that's the struggle. To live is to wrestle with despair, yet never allow despair to have the last word.

Cornel West

Image, For me, music is in no way ornamental or decorative, it’s constitutive

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For me, music is in no way ornamental or decorative, it's constitutive of who I am. And that's why, when I say I'm a blues man, that's a very serious vocation - to muster the courage to find your own unique voice, to forge your distinctive style in the world, to leave your imprint in the sands of time in such a way that your singularity, your individuality, remains something that people have to come to terms with.

Cornel West