Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Quote for the day

The technique of advertising and propaganda is to stun and demoralize the critical consciousness with statements too absurd or extreme to be dealt with seriously by it. In the mind that is too frightened or credulous or childish to want to deal with the world at all, they move in past the consciousness and set up their structures unopposed. What they create in such a mind is not necessarily acceptance, but dependence on their versions of reality...

What eventually happens I may describe in a figure borrowed from those interminable railway journeys that are so familiar to Canadians, at least of my generation. As one's eyes are passively pulled along a rapidly moving landscape, it turns darker and one begins to realize that many of the objects that appear to be outside are actually reflections of what is in the carriage. As it becomes entirely dark one enters a narcissistic world, where, except for a few lights here and there, we can see only the reflection of where we are.

-- Northrop Frye, in The Modern Century (1967)