Principium Volume I, Book 5, Quote 571, 577, 579

571. (12-5-2009) …a despot may find that it is his interest to render his subjects equal and to leave them ignorant, in order more easily to keep them slaves. Not only would a democratic people of this kind show neither aptitude nor taste for science, literature, or art, but it would probably never arrive at the possession of them. The law of descent would of itself provide for the destruction of fortunes at each succeeding generation; and new fortunes would be acquired by none. The poor man, without either knowledge or freedom, would not so much as conceive the idea of raising himself to wealth; and the rich man would allow himself to be degraded to poverty, without a notion of self-defence [sic]. Between these two members of the community complete and invincible equality would soon be established.

- Alexis de Toqueville – Democracy in America, 1840

577. (12-10-2009) (According to Alexis)ATJ Individualism is a mature and calm feeling, which disposes each member of the community to sever himself from the mass of his fellow-creatures; and to draw apart with his family and his friends; so that, after he has thus formed a little circle of his own, he willingly leaves society at large to itself.

- Alexis de Toqueville – Democracy in America, 1840

(Individualism is about self-respect, self-sufficiency, and self-sacrifice. Knowing that to succeed in any endeavor, you must alone put forth work and effort to achieve your desired end, and at the same time, be willing to set aside selfishness when duty and honor demand your attention. It is knowing that you are responsible for each and every act and decision that is made, and that you must reap and receive each consequence as a reward for the wisdom or folly you put into any act or decision, self-willed.)ATJ


579. (12-10-2009) A brilliant achievement may win for you the favor of a people at one stroke; but to earn the love and respect of the population which surrounds you, a long succession of little services rendered and of obscure good deeds – a constant habit of kindness, and an established reputation of disinterestedness – will be required. Local freedom, then, which leads a great number of citizens to value the affection of their neighbors and of their kindred, perpetually brings men together, and forces them to help one another, in spite of the propensity which sever them.

- Alexis de Toqueville – Democracy in America, 1840

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