Octavia Butler, “Devil Girl From Mars” Transcript of Remarks at MIT, 1998

A Commonplace Book

I have a verse here that I want to read to you from my novel, Parable of the Talents, which I’m just finishing. I should be at home finishing it right now. And the Monica Lewinsky story is why I brought this verse. Here it is:

Beware! All too often, we say what we

hear others say. We see what we are

permitted to see. Much worse, we see what

we’re told that we see. Repetition and pride

are the keys to this. To hear or to see even

an obvious lie again and again and again, is

to say it, almost by reflex, and then to

defend it because we have said it, and to

embrace what we’ve defended. Thus

without thought or intent, we make mere

echoes of ourselves and we say what we

hear others say.

Read the full transcript here.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s