Thoreau's Journal: 19-Feb-1855

Many will complain of my lectures that they are transcendental. “Can’t understand them.” “Would you have us return to the savage state?” etc., etc. A criticism true enough, it may be, from their point of view. But the fact is, the earnest lecturer can speak only to his like, and the adapting of himself to his audience is a mere compliment which he pays them. If you wish to know how I think, you must endeavor to put yourself in my place. If you wish me to speak as if I were you, that is another affair.

1 comment:

Mark Ratledge said...

Sounds something like a musician, performing, doing his/her own thing for their own sake, hoping, but not expecting the audience likes the music. I once knew a jazz musician, a tenor sax player, who never understood why he didn't get much reaction from the audience after he put his heart into his playing. I said he needed to acknowledge the audience at least a little bit. They needed a little credit for being there, at the sae time they wanted the jazz band to do their own thing.