Grit is the quality of exhibiting an indomitable spirit. No matter the circumstances, a person of grit is never overcome, subdued or vanquished. She may be defeated in a contest but is never defeated in spirit; he may fail at a task but he does not accept failure as the final outcome. It is the quality of perpetual assertiveness.
- Ken Wilber, Grace and Grit: Spirituality and Healing In the Life and Death of Treya Killam Wilber (Shambhala, 1991).
- Mitchell Zuckoff, Lost in Shangri-La: A True Story of Survival, Adventure, and the Most Incredible Rescue Mission of World War II (Harper, 2011): three survivors of a military plane crash in 1945 survive against extraordinary circumstances.
- Travis Mills, Tough As They Come (Center Point Publishing, 2016): this is a true story about a quadriple amputee.
Documentary and Educational Films
Lee Krasner, Volcanic (1951)
Film and Stage
- Places in the Heart: a young widow keeps her farm after her husband’s death during the Great Depression with persistence and hard work
- Alive, a dramatization of a true story about people who survive a plane crash in the Andes by extraordinary means, including cannibalism
Music: Composers, artists, and major works
Beethoven was in ill health, and feeling poorly most of the time, when Prince Nikolas Galitzin commissioned him to compose three new string quartets. One of these is his String Quartet No. 15 in A minor, Op. 132. As in his Fifth and Ninth Symphonies, the music progresses from dark to light, reflecting the composer’s personal struggles. “The subject matter of this quartet is pain and its transcendence . . . Music here appears to be an implicit agency of healing, a talisman against death.” The work has been called a “string quartet of transcendence”. Beethoven had already been coping with progressive deafness, a severe liability for a musician. His ability to compose exquisite music under these circumstances reminds us of our capacity to push through our difficulties, persevere and contribute to and in the world.