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Cat's Cradle

Cat's Cradle

by Kurt Vonnegut

Philosophy—Humanism Quotes

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #7

"It said a lot of things," [Mrs. Minton] said, "because I was very upset about how Americans couldn't imagine what it was like to be something else, to be something else and proud of it." (44.14)

One of the core concepts of humanism is the ability to imagine yourself as another person or see things from his worldview. This ability is called empathy. When you think about it, that just might make novels the perfect humanist vehicle.

Quote #8

"The form of government was anarchy, save in limited situations wherein Castle Sugar wanted to own something or get something done. In such situations, the form of government was feudalism" (56.6)

Yeah, more capitalism doesn't equal humanism talk. In this case, the novel compares capitalism to feudalism. Okay, we're going to leave this volatile subject alone now.

Quote #9

He wasn't far from Bokonon in defining maturity. "Maturity," Bokonon tells us, "is a bitter disappointment for which no remedy exists, unless laughter can be said to remedy anything." (88.19)

Perhaps we can rewrite The Beatles's "All You Need Is Love" to "All You Need Is Laughter." Both seem to help us get through that "bitter disappointment" Bokonon is talking about.

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