Democracy does not require perfect equality, but it does require that citizens share a common life. What matters is that people of different backgrounds and social positions encounter one another, and bump up against one another, in the course of ordinary life.
A man in my situation, my lords, has not only to encounter the difficulties of fortune. and the force of power over minds which it has corrupted or subjugated. but the difficulties of established prejudice: the man dies, but his memory lives.
‘The Rime of the Ancient Mariner’ had a formative effect on me. I think it’s one of those works that if you encounter it very early you’re doubly enchanted by the beauty of the language and the strangeness of the vision. It stays with you.
No one that encounters prosperity does not also encounter danger.
It is only at the first encounter that a face makes its full impression on us.
I always notice the dysfunctional dynamic of human relationships because most places where you encounter it, people are trying to pretend it isn’t happening.
It’s clear to me that anyone, anywhere, can experience loneliness, isolation, solitude, and estrangement; and most people probably do encounter these things at some point in their lives.