Sunday, February 17, 2008

Dream out loud

Andrew Wyeth. (American, born 1917). Christina's World. 1948. MoMA Collection.

I recently came across a noteworthy Bono quote from an anti-fascism event in Germany in early 1992.

"As much as we need to describe the kind of world we live in, we need to dream up the kind of world we want to live in. In the case of a rock & roll band that is to dream out loud, at high volume, to turn it up to eleven. Because we have fallen asleep in the comfort of our freedom.

Rock & roll is for some of us a kind of alarm clock. It wakes us up to dream! It has stopped me from becoming cynical in cynical times. Surely it is the inherited cynicism of our political and economic thinking that contributes so much to the despair of the 1990s."

I like the image of dreaming out loud. That sentiment found its way into the title track of the album U2 was recording at the time, Zooropa. And rock & roll can be an alarm clock, but can it be a cure for cynicism? I think in U2's music, it often is. There were some moments in U23D that my cynical side wasn't so sure about, but Bono is a sincere optimist -- something I admire. It takes great courage to not be a cynic. It takes a willingness to look like a rube or a simpleton in order to stick to one's principles or ideals. And for those of us who take great pleasure in the comedy of Jon Stewart and The Onion, entertaining the viewpoint of an optimist who is full of sincerity serves a refreshing balancing function. 

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2 Comments:

Blogger Stine said...

I don't mean to rain on your optimism parade, but cynics are just a lot funnier. Also, there is this study that the Danish people are the happiest people on earth. There was this 60 Minutes piece about it last week. Their secret? Start out depressed and everything comes as a pleasant surprise.

Although I'm pretty sure if I had as much money, talent, and power as Bono, I would be a perpetual optimist as well.

Friday, February 22, 2008 3:15:00 PM  
Blogger Director Sportif said...

What a cynical attitude!

Friday, February 22, 2008 3:57:00 PM  

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