An aphorism is nothing else but the slightest
form of writing raised to the highest level of expressive communication. Carl William Brown





The most perfect political community must be amongst those who are in the middle rank, and those states are best instituted wherein these are a larger and more respectable part, if possible, than both the other; or, if that cannot be, at least than either of them separate.


Aristotle (BC 384-322, Greek philosopher)


This miserable state is borne by the wretched souls of those who lived without disgrace and without praise.


Alighieri, Dante (1265-1321, Italian philosopher, poet)


What I call middle-class society is any society that becomes rigidified in predetermined forms, forbidding all evolution, all gains, all progress, all discovery. I call middle-class a closed society in which life has no taste, in which the air is tainted, in which ideas and men are corrupt. And I think that a man who takes a stand against this death is in a sense a revolutionary.


Frantz Fanon (1925-1961, French psychiatrist)


What I always hated and detested and cursed above all things was this contentment, this healthiness and comfort, this carefully preserved optimism of the middle classes, this fat and prosperous brood of mediocrity.


Hermann Hesse (1877-1962, German-born Swiss novelist, poet)


The prevalent fear of poverty among the educated classes is the worst moral disease from which our civilization suffers.


William James (1842-1910, American psychologist, professor, author)


We of the sinking middle class may sink without further struggles into the working class where we belong, and probably when we get there it will not be so dreadful as we feared, for, after all, we have nothing to lose.


George Orwell (1903-1950, British author, "Animal Farm")


I have to live for others and not for myself: that's middle-class morality.


George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950, Irish-born British dramatist)


I simply contend that the middle-class ideal which demands that people be affectionate, respectable, honest and content, that they avoid excitements and cultivate serenity is the ideal that appeals to me, it is in short the ideal of affectionate family life, of honorable business methods.


Gertrude Stein (1874-1946, American author)


It is to the middle-class we must look for the safety of England.


William M. Thackeray (1811-1863, Indian-born British novelist)


A theory of the middle class: that it is not to be determined by its financial situation but rather by its relation to government. That is, one could shade down from an actual ruling or governing class to a class hopelessly out of relation to government, thinking of government as beyond its control, of itself as wholly controlled by government. Somewhere in between and in gradations is the group that has the sense that gov't exists for it, and shapes its consciousness accordingly.


Lionel Trilling (1905-1975, American critic)


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