April 5, 2014

Finding Freedom

"The man looks, the wolf waits."

Of Harry Haller, the outsider anti-hero in Steppenwolf, a novel by Hermann Hesse (1927):

"There was never a man with a deeper and more passionate craving for independence than he. 

In his youth when he was poor and had difficulty in earning his bread, he preferred to go hungry and in torn clothes rather than endanger his narrow limit of independence. 

He never sold himself for money or an easy life or to women or to those in power; and had thrown away a hundred times what in the world's eyes was his advantage and happiness in order to safeguard his liberty. 

No prospect was more hateful and distasteful to him then that he should have to go to an office and conform to daily and yearly routines and obey others. 

He hated all kinds of offices, governmental or commercial, as he hated death, and his worst nightmare was confinement in barracks. 

He contrived, often at great sacrifice, to avoid all such predicaments. 

It was here that his strength and virtue rested. On this point he could neither be bent nor bribed. Here his character was firm and indeflectable."


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