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Educated – Tara Westover

  • In that vast space you can sail unaccompanied for hours, afloat on pine and brush and rock.
  • It’s the tranquility born of sheer immensity; it calms with its very magnitude, which renders the merely human of no consequence.
  • Midwifing changed my mother. She was a grown woman with seven children, but this was the first time in her life that she was, without question or caveat the one in charge.
  • But here was a principle through which the dimensions of life could be defined, captured. Perhaps reality was not wholly volatile. Perhaps it could be explained, predicted. Perhaps it could be made to make sense.
  • I want to bellow, to weep into my father’s knee and promise to never do it again. But the wolf I am, I am still above lying and anyway he would sniff the lie.
  • I had begun to understand that we had lent our voices to a discourse whose sole purpose was to dehumanize and brutalize others- because nurturing that discourse was easier, because retaining power always feels like the way forward.
  • To admit uncertainty is to admit to weakness, to powerlessness, and to believe in yourself despite both.
  • There were wonderful suppositions embedded in this method of reading: the books are not tricks, and that I was not feeble.
  • There was a kind of symbiosis in their relationship to these grand places; they gave life to the ancient architecture by making it the backdrop of their discourse, by refusing to worship as its altar as if it were a dead thing.
  • But vindication has no power over guilt. No amount of anger or rage directed at others can subdue it, because guilt is never about them. Guilt is the fear of one’s own wretchedness. It has nothing to do with other people.
  • You could call this selfhood many things. Transformation, metamorphosis. Falsity, betrayal. I call it an education.