Famous Quotes & Sayings

Ruth Benedict Quotes & Sayings

Enjoy the top 59 famous quotes, sayings and quotations by Ruth Benedict.

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Ruth Benedict Quotes 1237602

Racism remains in the eyes of history ... merely another instance of the persecution of minorities for the advantage of those in power. — Ruth Benedict

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Work even when I'm satisfied with it is never my child I love nor my servant I've brought to heel. It's always busy work I do with my left hand, and part of me watches grudging the wastes of a lifetime. — Ruth Benedict

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In a world that holds books and babies and canyon trails, why should one condemn oneself to live day-in, day-out with people one does not like, and sell oneself to chaperone and correct them? — Ruth Benedict

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Man is not committed in detail by his biological constitution to any particular variety of behavior. — Ruth Benedict

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We grow in time to trust the future for our answers. — Ruth Benedict

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Racism is the dogma that one ethnic group is condemned by nature to congenital inferiority and another group is destined to congenital superiority. — Ruth Benedict

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The life history of the individual is first and foremost an accommodation to the patterns and standards traditionally handed down in his community. — Ruth Benedict

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If we justify war, it is because all peoples always justify the traits of which they find themselves possessed, not because war will bear an objective examination of its merits. — Ruth Benedict

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In world history, those who have helped to build the same culture are not necessarily of one race, and those of the same race have not all participated in one culture. — Ruth Benedict

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The purpose of anthropology is to make the world safe for human differences. — Ruth Benedict

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There are two kinds of opportunities: one which we chance upon, the other which we create. — Ruth Benedict

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We must accept all the implications of our human inheritance, one of the most important of which is the small scope of biologically transmitted behavior, and the enormous role of the cultural process of the transmission of tradition. — Ruth Benedict

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What really binds men together is their culture, the ideas and the standards they have in common. — Ruth Benedict

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The arrogance of race prejudice is an arrogance which defies what is scientifically known of human races. — Ruth Benedict

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In a day of footloose movements of people and of mixed marriages in the ancestry of the most desirable elements of the community we preach unabashed the gospel of the pure race. — Ruth Benedict

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It is my necessary breath of life to understand and expression is the only justification of life that I can feel without prodding. — Ruth Benedict

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Traditional Anglo-Saxon intolerance is a local and temporal culture trait like any other. — Ruth Benedict

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I have always used the world of make-believe with a certain desperation. — Ruth Benedict

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The adequate study of culture, our own and those on the opposite side of the globe, can press on to fulfillment only as we learn today from the humanities as well as from the scientists. — Ruth Benedict

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Culture is not a biologically transmitted complex. — Ruth Benedict

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The peoples of the earth are one family. — Ruth Benedict

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Success and failure in our own national economy will hang upon the degree to which we are able to work with races and nations whose social order and whose behavior and attitudes are strange to us. — Ruth Benedict

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An observer will see the bizarre developments of behavior only in alien cultures, not his own. Nevertheless this is obviously a local and temporary bias. There is no reason to suppose that any one culture has seized upon an eternal sanity and will stand in history as a solitary solution of the human problem. Even the next generation knows better. Our only scientific course is to consider our own culture, so far as we are able, as one example among innumerable others of the variant configurations of human culture. — Ruth Benedict

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A man's indebtedness is not virtue; his repayment is. Virtue begins when he dedicates himself actively to the job of gratitude. — Ruth Benedict

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I haven't strength of mind not to need a career. — Ruth Benedict

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No one culture has ever developed all human potentialities; it has always selected certain capacities, mental and emotional and moral, and stifled others. Each culture is a system of values which may well complement the values in another. — Ruth Benedict

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We do not see the lens through which we look. — Ruth Benedict

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As a matter of history great developments in art have often been remarkably separate from religious motivation and use. — Ruth Benedict

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Our national experience in Americanizing millions of Europeans whose chief wish was to become Americans has been a heady wine which has made us believe, as perhaps no nation before us has ever believed, that, given the slimmest chance, all peoples will pattern themselves upon our model. — Ruth Benedict

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The mere fact of leaving ultimate social control in the hands of the people has not guaranteed that men will be able to conduct their lives as free men. Those societies where men know they are free are often democracies, but sometimes they have strong chiefs and kings.they have, however, one common characteristic: they are all alike in making certain freedoms common to all citizens, and inalienable. — Ruth Benedict

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I long to speak out the intense inspiration that comes to me from the lives of strong women. — Ruth Benedict

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It is strange how long we rebel against a platitude until suddenly in a different lingo it looms up again as the only verity. — Ruth Benedict

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Virtue begins when we dedicate ourselves actively to the job of gratitude. — Ruth Benedict

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War is, we have been forced to admit, even in the face of its huge place in our civilization, an asocial trait. — Ruth Benedict

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The psychological consequences of this spread of white culture have been out of all proportion to the materialistic. This world-wide cultural diffusion has protected us as man had never been protected before from having to take seriously the civilizations of other peoples; it has given to our culture a massive universality that we have long ceased to account for historically, and which we read off rather as necessary and inevitable. — Ruth Benedict

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The Japanese are, to the highest degree, both aggressive and unaggressive, both militaristic and aesthetic, both insolent and polite, rigid and adaptable, submissive and resentful of being pushed around, loyal and treacherous, brave and timid, conservative and hospitable to new ways. — Ruth Benedict

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Our faith in the present dies out long before our faith in the future. — Ruth Benedict

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The trouble with life isn't that there is no answer, it's that there are so many answers — Ruth Benedict

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Society in its full sense ... is never an entity separable from the individuals who compose it. No individual can arrive even at the threshold of his potentialities without a culture in which he participates. Conversely, no civilization has in it any element which in the last analysis is not the contribution of an individual. — Ruth Benedict

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Western civilization, because of fortuitous historical circumstances, has spread itself more widely than any other local group that has so far been known. — Ruth Benedict

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Oh, I long to prove myself by writing! The best seems to die in me when I give it up. It is the self I love
not this efficient, philanthropic self. — Ruth Benedict

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The trouble is not that we are never happy-it is that happiness is so episodical. — Ruth Benedict

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Most people are shaped to the form of their culture because of the enormous malleability of their original endowment. They are plastic to the moulding force of the society into which they are born. It does not matter whether, with the Northwest Coast, it requires delusions of self-reference, or with our own civilization the amassing of possessions. In any case the great mass of individuals take quite readily the form that is presented to them. — Ruth Benedict

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It is a commonplace that men like war. For peace, in our society, with the feeling we have then that it is feeble-minded to strive except for one's own private profit, is a lonely thing and a hazardous business. Over and over men have proved that they prefer the hazards of war with all its suffering. It has its compensations. — Ruth Benedict

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Culture, with its processes and functions, is a subject upon which we need all the enlightenment we can achieve, and there is no direction in which we can seek with greater reward than in the facts of pre-literate societies. — Ruth Benedict

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Racism is an ism to which everyone in the world today is exposed; for or against, we must take sides. And the history of the future will differ according to the decision which we make. — Ruth Benedict

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I gambled on having the strength to live two lives, one for myself and one for the world. — Ruth Benedict

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The crucial differences which distinguish human societies and human beings are not biological. They are cultural. — Ruth Benedict

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Liberty is the one thing no man can have unless he grants it to others. — Ruth Benedict

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Experience, contrary to common belief, is mostly imagination. — Ruth Benedict

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With every Asiatic country where we operate in cooperation with the existing culture, the need for intelligent understanding of that country and its ways of life will be crucial. These nations will very likely not respond to appeals with which we are familiar, and not value rewards which seem to us irresistible. The danger
and it would be fatal to world peace
is that in our ignorance of their cultural values we shall meet in head-on collision and incontinently fall back on the old pattern of imposing our own values by force. — Ruth Benedict

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The prime lesson the social sciences can learn from the natural sciences is just this: that it is necessary to press on to find the positive conditions under which desired events take place, and that these can be just as scientifically investigated as can instances of negative correlation. This problem is beyond relativity. — Ruth Benedict

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The happiest excitement in life is to be convinced that one is fighting for all one is worth on behalf of some clearly seen and deeply felt good, and against some greatly scorned evil. — Ruth Benedict

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No man ever looks at the world with pristine eyes. He sees it edited by a definite set of customs and institutions and ways of thinking. — Ruth Benedict

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Japan likewise put her hopes of victory on a different basis from that prevalent in the United States. ( ... ) Even when she was winning, her civilian statesmen, her High Command, and her soldiers repeated that this was no contest between armaments; it was pitting of our faith in things against their faith in spirit. — Ruth Benedict

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The heavier our bodies, the higher our will, our spirit, rises above them.' 'The wearier we are, the more splendid the training. — Ruth Benedict

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So much of the trouble is because I am a woman. To me it seems a very terrible thing to be a woman. There is one crown which perhaps is worth it all
a great love, a quiet home, and children. We all know that is all that is worthwhile, and yet we must peg away, showing off our wares on the market if we have money, or manufacturing careers for ourselves if we haven't. — Ruth Benedict

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The tough-minded ... respect difference. Their goal is a world made safe for differences, where the United States may be American to the hilt without threatening the peace of the world, and France may be France, and Japan may be Japan on the same conditions. — Ruth Benedict

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War is an old, old plant on this earth, and a natural history of it would have to tell us under what soil conditions it grows, where it plays havoc, and how it is eliminated. — Ruth Benedict