Here’s the guest post I wrote for the Resource Generation Blog last week. Jonathan Franzen, The Soup Dragons, freedom, Freedom, Freedom!, responsibility and afflicting ourselves with a sort of happiness …
THE RESPONSIBILITY OF FREEDOM,
THE FREEDOM OF RESPONSIBILITY
“Freedom is what you do with what’s been done to you.” – Jean-Paul Sartre
There’s a new book about freedom. It’s called Freedom. It’s not a political book. It’s a novel, written by Jonathan Franzen, who last month’s Time magazine cover proclaimed to be the “Great American Novelist.” (Who knew that there were still novels? Let alone novelists? Let alone great ones? But that’s another entry for another forum for another day…) I have not read the book – novel, sorry. Nor do I plan to. My literary ADD requires that my reading diet consist almost exclusively of nonfiction (a societal problem Franzen speaks of in the Time piece). But I did enjoy the cover article very much, finding the portion of its discussion of freedom, Freedom the idea, Freedom the ideal, Freedom the bumper-sticker phrase, to be particularly poignant for the Resource Generation community. For who has more freedom than the financially privileged? The freedom to choose what to do and what not to do, how to do it, and when. The freedom to cultivate a life of one’s own choosing.