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The absurd consequences of neglecting structure but
by Rudolf Arnheim

The absurd consequences of neglecting structure but
using the concept of order just the same are evident
if one examines the present terminology of information theory.
- Rudolf Arnheim

Order is a necessary condition for anything the human mind is to understand.
- Rudolf Arnheim

Today we no longer regard the universe as the cause
of our own undeserved troubles but perhaps,
on the contrary, as the last refuge from the mismanagement of our earthly affairs.
- Rudolf Arnheim

The least touchable object in the world is the eye.
- Rudolf Arnheim

 

The line that describes the beautiful is elliptical.
It has simplicity and constant change.
It cannot be described by a compass,
and it changes direction at every one of its points.
- Rudolf Arnheim

All perceiving is also thinking, all reasoning is also intuition,
all observation is also invention.
- Rudolf Arnheim

Modem science, then, maintains on the one hand that nature,
both organic and inorganic, strives towards a state
of order and that man's actions are governed by the same tendency.
- Rudolf Arnheim

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Good art theory must smell of the studio,
although its language should differ from the household
talk of painters and sculptors.
- Rudolf Arnheim

A system is in equilibrium when the forces constituting
it are arranged in such a way as to compensate each other,
like the two weights pulling at the arms of a pair of scales.
- Rudolf Arnheim

As one gets older, it happens that in the morning one
fails to remember the airplane trip to be taken in
a few hours or the lecture scheduled for the afternoon.
- Rudolf Arnheim

At one of the annual conventions of the American Society
for Aesthetics much confusion arose when the Society
for Anesthetics met at the same time in the same hotel.
- Rudolf Arnheim

In many instances, order is apprehended first of all by the senses.
- Rudolf Arnheim

Variety is more than a means of avoiding boredom,
since art is more than an entertainment of the senses.
- Rudolf Arnheim

Now equilibrium is the very opposite of disorder.
- Rudolf Arnheim

In a land of immigrants, one was not an alien but simply the latest arrival.
- Rudolf Arnheim

The foreign accent was a promise, and indeed,
all over the country, European imports added spice to the sciences,
the arts, and other areas.
What one had to give was not considered inferior to what one received.
- Rudolf Arnheim

The rehabilitation of order as a universal principle,
however, suggested at the same time that orderliness
by itself is not sufficient to account for the nature
of organized systems in general or for those created by man in particular.
- Rudolf Arnheim

Entropy theory, on the other hand, is not concerned
with the probability of succession in a series of items
but with the overall distribution of kinds of items in a given arrangement.
- Rudolf Arnheim

Rather than be asked to abandon one's own heritage
and to adapt to the mores of the new country,
one was expected to possess a treasure of foreign skills
and customs that would enrich the resources of American living.
- Rudolf Arnheim

The clarification of visual forms and their organization
in integrated patterns as well as the attribution of
such forms to suitable objects is one of the most effective
training grounds of the young mind.
- Rudolf Arnheim

When a system is considered in two different states,
the difference in volume or in any other property,
between the two states, depends solely upon those states
themselves and not upon the manner in which the system
may pass from one state to the other.
- Rudolf Arnheim

The arts, as a reflection of human existence at its highest,
have always and spontaneously lived up to this demand of plenitude.
No mature style of art in any culture has ever been simple.
- Rudolf Arnheim

Entropy theory is indeed a first attempt to deal with global form;
but it has not been dealing with structure.
All it says is that a large sum of elements may have
properties not found in a smaller sample of them.
- Rudolf Arnheim

Furthermore, order is a necessary condition for making a structure function.
A physical mechanism, be it a team of laborers,
the body of an animal, or a machine,
can work only if it is in physical order.
- Rudolf Arnheim

Man's striving for order, of which art is but one manifestation,
derives from a similar universal tendency throughout the organic world;
it is also paralleled by,
and perhaps derived from, the striving towards the
state of simplest structure in physical systems.
- Rudolf Arnheim

Doubt is not a pleasant condition, but certainty is absurd.
- Voltaire

It's really a wonder that I haven't dropped all my ideals,
because they seem so absurd and impossible to carry out.
Yet I keep them, because in spite of everything
I still believe that people are really good at heart.
- Anne Frank

People will do anything, no matter how absurd,
to avoid facing their own souls.
- Carl Jung

Advice in old age is foolish; for what can be more
absurd than to increase our provisions for the road
the nearer we approach to our journey's end.
- Marcus Tullius Cicero

How absurd and delicious it is to be in love with somebody younger than yourself.
Everybody should try it.
- Barbara Pym

Success is an absurd, erratic thing.
She arrives when one least expects her and after she
has come may depart again almost because of a whim.
- Alice Foote MacDougall

In comedy, something may be more absurd,
but you have to believe just as much as you do when you're doing drama.
- Jenna Elfman

Life may be not only meaningless but absurd.
- Thomas Nagel

Love is free; to promise for ever to love the same
woman is not less absurd than to promise to believe the same creed;
such a vow in both cases excludes us from all inquiry.
- Percy Bysshe Shelley

Rock 'n' roll is ridiculous. It's absurd.
In the past, U2 was trying to duck that.
Now we're wrapping our arms around it and giving it a great big kiss.
- Bono

I'm the end of the line; absurd and appalling as it may seem,
serious New York theater has died in my lifetime.
- Arthur Miller

There is nothing so absurd that some philosopher has not already said it.
- Marcus Tullius Cicero

Most of the basic truths of life sound absurd at first hearing.
- Elizabeth Goudge

It's absolutely absurd to even consider voting on Sunday alcohol sales.
I am opposed to alcohol period.
It doesn't do anybody any good in the long run.
It's a dangerous drug.
- John Hunter

How absurd men are!
They never use the liberties they have,
they demand those they do not have.
They have freedom of thought, they demand freedom of speech.
- Soren Kierkegaard

It is human nature to think wisely and act in an absurd fashion.
- Anatole France

A refuge is supposed to prevent what? The genes from
flowing out of sight? This refuge idea won't stop insects
from moving across boundaries.
That's absurd.
- Jeremy Rifkin

My first feeling about the paper and the attitude is that it is absurd.
- Arthur Holly Compton

The absurd is the essential concept and the first truth.
- Albert Camus

The film business is absurd.
Stars don't last very long.
It's much more interesting to be a proper actor.
- Tom Courtenay

I have too much respect for the idea of God to make
it responsible for such an absurd world.
- Georges Duhamel

When you look at it that way, you can see how absurd
it is that we individualize ourselves with our fences and hoarded possessions.
- Morrie Schwartz

I'm definitely a centrist and feel like both parties can be absurd.
- Brad Bird

Treating your audience like thieves is absurd.
Anyone who chooses to listen to our music becomes a collaborator.
- Jeff Tweedy

Most Americans would agree that Plowshares is a Theatre of the Absurd.
- Daniel Berrigan

To believe in God is impossible not to believe in Him is absurd.
- Voltaire

The most absurd and reckless aspirations have sometimes
led to extraordinary success.
- Marquis De Vauvenargues

Firing off 1,000 or 500 or 2,000 nuclear warheads on
a few minutes' consideration has always struck me as
an absurd way to go to war.
- William Odom

Instead of this absurd division into sexes they ought
to class people as static and dynamic.
- Evelyn Waugh

What is absurd and monstrous about war is that men
who have no personal quarrel should be trained to murder
one another in cold blood.
- Aldous Huxley

The logic of the heart is absurd.
- Julie de Lespinasse

In order to attain the impossible, one must attempt the absurd.
- Miguel de Cervantes

The fact that an opinion has been widely held is no
evidence whatever that it is not utterly absurd.
- Bertrand Russell

The history of thought may be summed up in these words:
it is absurd by what it seeks and great by what it finds.
- Paul Valery

For centuries many of the world's distinguished philosophers
have assaulted Christianity as being irrational,
superstitious and absurd.
- Josh McDowell

There's so much absurdity.
Poverty is so absurd.
- Frank McCourt

That thing of hell and eternal punishment is the most absurd,
as well as the most disagreeable thought that ever
entered into the head of mortal man.
- George Berkeley

Whatsoever is contrary to nature is contrary to reason,
and whatsoever is contrary to reason is absurd.
- Baruch Spinoza

The origin of the absurd idea of immortal life is easy to discover;
it is kept alive by hope and fear,
by childish faith, and by cowardice.
- Clarence Darrow

I don't think life is absurd.
I think we are all here for a huge purpose.
I think we shrink from the immensity of the purpose we are here for.
- Norman Mailer

My husband does so many romantic things for me,
it's absurd.
- Jennifer Beals

I don't know.
I think it's funny!
I think it's funny!
I go, what? It's so absurd.
I'm alone.
- Danny DeVito

Now it would be as absurd to deny the existence of God,
because we cannot see him, as it would be to deny the
existence of the air or wind,
because we cannot see it.
- Adam Clarke

I think somehow you need to get to a certain point
in your life where the notion of failure is absurd.
- Jeff Tweedy

Solitude gives birth to the original in us,
to beauty unfamiliar and perilous - to poetry.
But also, it gives birth to the opposite:
to the perverse,
the illicit, the absurd.
- Thomas Mann

A Republic without parties is a complete anomaly.
The histories of all popular governments show absurd
is the idea of their attempting to exist without parties.
- Franklin Pierce


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