"In politics, love is a stranger, and when it intrudes upon it nothing is being achieved except hypocrisy. All the characteristics you stress in the Negro people: their beauty, their capacity for joy, their warmth, and their humanity, are well-known characteristics of all oppressed people. They grow out of suffering and they are the proudest possession of all pariahs. Unfortunately, they have never survived the hour of liberation by even five minutes. Hatred and love belong together, and they are both destructive; you can afford them only in private and, as a people, only so long as you are not free."
by:
Hannah Arendt
(1906-1975) German-American political theorist, escaped Nazi Germany
Source:
Letter to James Baldwin (21 November 1962).
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Reader comments about this quote:
I'm not quite sure how to rate this. To me, it is a rollercoaster of agreement then disagreement. It is accurate that a body politic in a representative republic of individual sovereigns is based on law and rights, as averse to emotion, religious dogmas and tenets and such as is love and hate. AND; the occupying statist theocracy infesting this land does exemplify the illegally implemented foundation and reasoning of a supposed love and realized hate. WHILE; I would set forth that charity, beauty, warmth and a capacity for extending a hand of humanity are attributes of those who love and abide liberty.
 -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    The ordinarily astute Ms. Arendt's definition of Love was in definite need of refinement.
     -- Patrick Henry, Red Hill     
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    I like "All the characteristics you stress in the Negro people: their beauty, their capacity for joy, their warmth, and their humanity, are well-known characteristics of all oppressed people. They grow out of suffering and they are the proudest possession of all pariahs."
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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