- Freedom, “that terrible word inscribed on the chariot of the storm,” is the motivating principle of all revolutions. Without it, justice seems inconceivable to the rebel’s mind. [Albert Camus, The Rebel: An Essay on Man in Revolt (1951), Part Three, “Historical Rebellion”.]
Along with the desire for progress, discontent is a primary emotional force behind change. Major change is unsettling, so an unsettling emotion like discontent may be necessary to overcome inertia and resistance.
Sophie Scholl was a young German political activist who opposed Hitler. The Reich executed her, along with her brother and a friend after they tried to distribute anti-Nazi leaflets.
- Inge Scholl, The White Rose: Munich, 1942-1943 (Wesleyan, 1983).
- Jud Newborn and Annette Dumbach, Sophie Scholl and the White Rose (Oneworld Publications, 2007).
- Wendy Lesser, Music for Silenced Voices: Shostakovich and His Fifteen Quartets (Yale University Press, 2011): “The music is marked by extravagant willfulness, but also by an excruciating sense of futility; powerful assertions collapse in submission or despair; we are not always sure when the music is serious and when it is sarcastic. Dramatic principles of unity are widely violated.”
- Romain Gary, Promise At Dawn: A Memoir (Harper & Brothers, 1961): “Gary believed all people suffered from this need, to break their bonds asunder again and again.”
- Tim Mohr, Burning Down the Haus: Punk Rock, Revolution, and the Fall of the Berlin Wall (Algonquin Books, 2018): seething in alienation, punk rock paved the way toward revolution, but what will survive?
- Joan Miró, May 1968 (1973)
- Wassily Kandinsky, Red Spot II (1921)
- Wassily Kandinsky, White Stroke (1920)
- Marc Chagall, To Russia, with Asses and Others (1911)
Film and Stage
- Sophie Scholl, chronicling the final days of a young German woman, her brother and friend, who paid with their lives for telling the truth about the futility of the Third Reich’s midadventures
- Viridiana, Luis Buñuel’s masterful confrontation of “the piously insulated mind . . . (and) social conditions in Spain”, presented through the tale of a young and beautiful ex-nun whose uncle offers her his “charity”
Music: songs and other short pieces
Bob Marley, icon of Reggae music:
- “Legend” album
- “Uprising” album
- “Kaya” album
- “Survival” album
- “Rastaman Vibration” album
- “Chant Down Babylon” album
- “Exodus” album
- “Catch a Fire” album
- “Natty Dread” album
- “Talkin’ Blues” album
- Concert at Harvard Stadium, 1979
- Live at Santa Barbara, 1979
- “The Legend” concert, 1979
- “Live at the Roxy”, 1976
- Live in Paris, 1980
- Live in Oakland, CA, 1979