Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Agrarian Arendt

"The blessing of labor is that effort and gratification follow each other as closely as producing and consuming the means of subsistence, so that happiness is a concomitant of the process itself, just as pleasure is a concomitant of the functioning of a healthy body….The right to the pursuit of this happiness is indeed as undeniable as the right to life; it is even identical with it….There is no lasting happiness outside the prescribed cycle of painful exhaustion and pleasurable regeneration, and whatever throws this cycle out of balance – poverty and misery where exhaustion is followed by wretchedness instead of regeneration, or great riches and an entirely effortless life where boredom takes the place of exhaustion and where the mills of necessity, of consumption and digestion, grind an impotent human body mercilessly and barrenly to death – ruins the elemental happiness that comes from being alive."
Hannah Arendt, The Human Condition