The Independent Artist and Intellectual

By permission of the estate of C. W. Mills. Photo by Yaroslava.

“The independent artist and intellectual are among the few remaining personalities equipped to resist and to fight the stereotyping and consequent death of genuinely lively things. Fresh perception now involves the capacity continually to unmask and to smash the stereotypes of vision and intellect with which modern communications swamp us. These worlds of mass-art and mass-thought are increasingly geared to the demands of politics. That is why it is in politics that intellectual solidarity and effort must be centred. If the thinker does not relate himself to the value of truth in political struggle, he cannot responsibly cope with the whole of live experience.”

– C. Wright Mills in ‘The Social Role of the Intellectual’


Categories: C. Wright Mills

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2 replies »

  1. What is the full citation for this quote (e.g. page number)?

    • I assume the essay has probably turned up in more than one book! My version is in the Politics of Truth (which I don’t have with me). The essay is not v long so if you find it, you’ll easily find that extract and it’s worth reading the whole thing!

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