Cooper Union forum; 1; Fall 1970
From the Great Hall of the Cooper Union in New York City. National Educational radio presents a lecture and titled The psychology of tradition. This lecture was recorded for broadcast by station WNYC. Now to introduce the speaker. Here is the chairman of the Cooper Union forum series. Dr. Johnston easy Fairchild our topic for discussion on this occasion has to do with the. Psychology of tradition. My colleague you know the evening is Dr. Emanuel case for that. It's a. It's about. Dr. Schwartz is a 40 second appearance here the great whore and he has helped me personally many times with ideas and problems and I think he is known to practically everybody in the world from
Brazil to Europe to the United States but just in case you didn't think you were the one person that does not know. May I just mention that he is a psychologist and psychoanalyst dean of training What's a Post Graduate Center. He is dean of the Post Graduate Center for Mental Health. Has a large number of publications and a lot of things coming out as a very interesting book on the why he would suggest you look at it. It's not out yet but it's coming very soon and be on the come. Look at it if you can when you have nothing else to do of course. However the list of his credits this problem doesn't know the psychology of tradition.
I want those kids knowing wasn't very sly going on all right. I was about to pick me up and carry on. And just say that the fact that you're here or listening in the Cape that you have some feeling about tradition. I tell you a little personal or tell you a little personal story which has all of the virus that may help you know I had a young daughter a very early age. Fortunately I have a very healthy productive daughter on the other side. At a very early age and there was a question of our top say a battery or so forth. And you know I said Well alright
autopsy. Maybe it will help them find out something about other babies. And of course for the time they were through you know. Like so you know not having a burial or you know a few My didn't have a funeral I thought this was intellectual. And you know for many years I had terribly difficult dreams of the small things you know wipe down getting up from. A group of corpses and walking over to a counter and saying Is it my turn yet. I had that dream over and over and I realize finally and thanks parsley to shore it just helped that I was terribly upset at the fact that I had not given honor to the ceremony you
know. For even the various long. And very nice. I happen to believe that very beautiful baby. And it was it was a magnificent like many people that are very beautiful or babies that are very beautiful sometimes are not long for it. In any event what I am trying to say is that the bit of tradition. Oh why don't I have a funeral because I was too intellectual or too small to cut up the baby I mean I could and I was. All right. What I'm trying to say that traditionally. You want to be the little bit now things which I talk about him roll over to my right to have her. Three great days such as Lincoln's birthday. And he was a great
man. Or Martin Luther King's birthday today it seems a little more important to mention the assassination dates which I regret but in any event there are traditional dates and things which seem to carry people. Now it's perfectly easy for me to stand up there and talk about things like orange almost looks like a more traditional story. It's easy to say that. Because I don't like that baby here who cares about war. So for.
You. I would suspect that I am going to live very happily. My colleague Dr. Schwartz on this point but I would suspect. That they're very important within the human frame work to make up that is what we are here to discuss tonight. On this leg of that of first rate the importance and the value of tradition and the psychological implications of saying Dr. Schwartz that your microphone. He says there are only the two of us today. I think I'd like to stay and I seem to be better related to the audience if I stand I think you can see me I can see you. And I think maybe you can hear me better.
Since this is a very special occasion although I have been here many many many times I want you to know this is the first time. That that's a fact Chad invited me to come on the occasion of the celebration of the Lincoln Day Wednesday evening lecture. So that for me this is a very special occasion too. We are celebrating a tradition and that is that on the Wednesday evening. Cooper Union Forum says something about Abraham Lincoln and says something about tradition. And so I'm happy to participate in this tradition. What I want to tell you about However before I get down to the body of my discussion with you tonight. Is how Johnny used tradition to twist my arm up. He may not recall that but tradition isn't always something good I want to say that right away. Sometimes tradition is bad
like all things in life. There are good aspects and bad aspects and I will talk about that in a moment. But I want to tell you about how Johnny used the Abraham Lincoln tradition to twist my arm. One day more than 20 years ago I received a letter from a Professor Johnson Fairchild. Inviting me to give for the first time an address at the Cooper Union Forero and that was a very neat letter. It said Dear Dr. Schwartz. Knowing your great qualifications your capacities and so on and knowing how much we need you in the audience needs people like you to talk up. In those days a room used to be jammed to the elders. Here I want to invite you to participate in our Coby Union forum and give a talk on some subject of your capacity your competence. We are dealing with this subject this year. Please take this subject and we think you can address the audience about this very well.
Now that was enough because he was afraid I was going to say no as I might very well have said. But the letter went on Do you remember Johnny's I know I cannot offer you an honorarium commensurately with your ability and your merits. I know you deserve more than they need to want to have box I offer you or something of that effect. But he said. But he said I want to offer you the opportunity to talk. From the platform and use the lecture that Abraham Lincoln used in his aids Ede 59 address. How does a man turn down that kind of an opportunity. I mean I read the letter and I said Abraham Lincoln and Schwartz. You mean I could stand on that platform and Abraham Lincoln stood on. I can use the platform of the lectern
that Abraham Lincoln. Probably the greatest hero setting most of the great traditions in America. That he spoke from this platform I can use it. And he invites me to use it. No money in the world can pay for that opportunity. And of course I wrote back of course I would. And that was my first. Cooper Union forum address. And I came back again and again and again over these 20 years not only because it was in the tradition of Abraham Lincoln but that I had now a spammer Sidr edition for myself. It was traditional. It became almost like a little like a necessity. Like an operating principle that I come back once a year sometimes even twice a year and continue my relationship with the Cooper Union forums. That.
Is only part of what I want to tell you about Abraham Lincoln and the use of this auditorium. What I never told Johnny before tonight was. That I had a very very large fantasy that first time that I received that letter when he wrote this letter and said You may use the platform and the lectern used by Abraham Lincoln I had the fantasy that I would arrive that Wednesday night with a stovepipe hat. A black. High Hat. And a black shawl. And look in here that way. And I was just hoping that I could have the courage the nerve to do that without Johnny throwing me out I didn't know him then. If I had the freedom then that I have now and knew John even the way I knew him now I think I would have done it. And I'm only regretful that that will always remain one of the fantasies one of the dreams of my life. Now back to tradition.
Tradition means generally the handing down. The handing over the giving of something over. That's what the word me. You give something over and generally it relates to not what is written but generally what is spoken because the first things that we give a mother gives to a child. Is not a book to read. But she gives them sound she gives the child sounds of a voice. In fact it was my great teacher whom I did not know but I follow in the tradition of Freud who said that the most important sense. The most important perceptual mode Galatea his earring. That's more important insight more important smell taste touch or anything else that the largest nerve in the pyramidal nerves and central
nervous system is the oratory not the optic nerve. And the first contact. That a child has with his mama is not by sea but by hearing. What do we do want to child is blown up. We slap him on the back. We want the child to cry because that means he's alive. He's in contact. And so sound becomes the first thing the child doesn't really see until later on. And so tradition has something to do with what a mother. What a parent transmits communicates gives over to a child. And that's the beginning of a long tradition. Whether it's the mother in the child or the extensions of mothers like schools like church. Like state. Like nation all of these
are extensions of the School of the mother's knee all of these are ways in which we take a human animal called an infant and we convert that human animal into a human being. The most important the most powerful means that we have for converting the human animal to human being is by means of a transmission AAB humanity culture. Tradition. Each one of us has our own way of looking at what it means to be a human being. We develop habits you ations mits patterns. Principles laws by which we live. And so human beings do this at work in one way or another. And since this is an Abraham Lincoln Day address or are related the Abraham Lincoln day I thought I would like to outline for you what I think Army American
traditions are what have been the American traditions up to now. What are the traditions by which we make American human beings. Because American human beings are different from Brazilian human beings and they're different in some ways from French human beings although in many ways they are also the same. So I thought I would like to discuss with you. What are the American traditions up to now. And I say up to now because I think we are are in a transition point. I think America is changing more rapidly than ever before in the past. And that out of this change new traditions may arise and I would like to outline some of these new directions for new traditions. But up to now. I would like to suggest that the most important tradition in this culture. Has been the tradition of what Abraham not Abraham it was it was
Benjamin Franklin's a wise labor labor is the sauce all the vanity. It was Benjamin Franklin who said that. This nation is based upon one of our one of the foundation stones is to work. And to earn a living is one of the great traditions. There are very few nations in the world that are so deeply that is so deeply rooted in the idea. That one must work and earn a living. Now it is true that we give welfare and that we give support and that some people do not work and more people do not work well then used to work. That it is now a new tradition among those under 30 not to work as a kind of an into traditional rebellion. But a large one of the great traditions in America is to work and earn a living. I remember as a child we had a sample on the wall.
You remember what say it was work. Little crocheted are knitted or embroidered Marlowe's. On the wall I used to say different things and I think there was one that we had on the wall that said something like. Evil What is an idle hands the devil's workshop make. Or something to that effect. And that is in this culture. We think somebody has got to be kept busy. If you don't work at a bump this is necessarily true. Because we're facing a revolution in that area in that direction I come back to in a moment. So one of the big things in our culture is that a lot of the big traditions is that we teach the child we teach other people teach American human beings to work to earn a living. We also say that you have to protest. Our country our country or protect our territory from the Indians. We protect our world from
invasion. We protect our land. We are great ones in the tradition of protesting our country. And sometimes when we protect our country we also talk about protecting our ideals. This is another tradition we're willing to go to war to fight a world all fight for democracy. Because we think it is our tradition that democracy is good. Now they have a lot we call our tradition. We would like other people to share sometimes are necessary and sometimes inappropriately. But we have a tradition which says that our values our myths our democracy our ideals are good. And so we make the world safe for democracy that's why we go to war. Because we think it is our tradition that democracy is good. We are so fight for religious freedom.
We also fight for separation of state and church. So another one of our great traditions is religion whether you like it or not this is probably the most religious nation in the world. People say that this is not. People say that America is not the most religious nation in the world. But I tell you I don't know of any nation in the world that is more religious than this country. And this is both good and bad as all traditions of good and bad. Let me give you an example. You will find nowhere else in the world a Bible in every hotel room and in some hotel rooms you'll find a volume of Shakespeare. For example if you go to Stratford Connecticut in the hotel room you'll find a volume of Shakespeare in the bottom of the Bible. I tell you that this religious trend in this country the following of the Scriptures the reading of the old New Testament. Has made this a great nation. We are a nation of Literates. You know in the Conestoga
wagon. The covered wagons that pioneered across the country. There was one thing you can be sure you would find in every one of those covered wagon. Get. A bike. And if they did nothing else for entertainment for relief from boredom. The struggle against the the elements the one tradition was they gathered around and somebody read from the Scriptures. This was a great and is a great tradition in this country. This is an American tradition. This occurs in my opinion and no other nation. No other people ever had this kind of tradition another tradition. I want to talk about in this country that is we also have traditions about up martial life martial life I put that in quotation marks. We are a great nation of fighters and violence despite all of the talk that we are not Hessian mercenaries and we are not whatever it is. But we have a tremendous
tradition of being fighters about being soldiers. You know this little 13 colonies with nobody at all took on this great big British Empire and brought it to its knees This is our we were born on. It we believe that it's important for us to die for our country. At least that's one of the traditions that we were told that's an American tradition to be patriotic to give your life for your country to be a hero to have Traurig. Other nations have a tradition some say you runs away lives to fight another day. We don't say that. We say you gotta have courage you've got to face the music. So heroism Lorrie courage. For Old Glory. What is that song. The the song of the republic we're stamping out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are wants on these oh here are songs. The Battle Hymn of the republic. These are war songs and we have a tremendous
tradition in war up and in violence. And don't let anybody tell you otherwise. We don't walk through the streets and America never has. From the days of its founding by the Puritans until now it would somebody walks up and say peace brother. We don't do that. We have one eye hand on our. Security. But we didn't walk up to one of them we still don't walk up to one another in this country it is not a tradition to say Peace Brother when you offer your name. That's not American tradition. Not a tradition for America. But a young man when he is young between not save 12 and 20 is adolescence. A young man has got to be an adolescent he's got to be pursuing the manly acts that he's really a young man. He's got to go out and he's going to play baseball. He's got to learn how to box you gotta wrestle. He's got to be athletic. This is not like the Greek tradition
the great tradition is a man learns music that's its tradition. You learned to write poetry. We say Hey he's a sissy if he wants to write poetry when he's 60 or he wants to sing music except rock and roll today. That's part of the the new kinds of traditions but in our country traditionally a young man had to learn the manly arts of athletics magic and I did YOU ARE come up with the line I get it wasn't going to agree with you know the plank you know. I can remember those. I came running home a couple of the biggest boy in the school was chasing me. My mother took one look. They went by a pattern. The bank got it and she said you go. Right. To America. Yes in America has died
as a right. Well I happen to like to try to six feet tall and I don't worry so much as I was three and a half a hundred and it was a big difference but you know what your tradition is absolutely right. Because my mother thought it was a disgrace if I ran home and the neighbors would see me running home she said to him via some local character. And she said Son I'm fine. Well he beat them to Jesus but you get the man the man. Lot of folk proud of me as a matter of you get beaten up. It did the manly thing that's right and she was so proud that she thought I was right. We were right.
Does it matter. Did I not hear more mantling was right because I just wanted to point out that there are players in this provision. I mean these are the traditions of America and if you don't know this you don't know America and Americans emphasize the manliness you are talking about because we deemphasize we reject so-called female qualities. The poetry the music the home here which are not secure precise been analyzed. But you only know that this is anti-establishment anti tradition. If you know what the traditionally as you begin to look at these traditions you'll begin to see how in the present moment we are trying to establish an empty tradition which in itself becomes a new kind of tradition which may ultimately get amalgamated. But the whole idea of an adolescent young me pursuing the female. Like poetry music which the European does always change. And
ancient Greek did it they did. There are an Asiatic nonsense high school poetry music dance not. For us we got to go out play football baseball and go fight the big bully. Now one of the traditions do we have in this country. Another great American tradition is what I call the puritanical egg the puritanical ethic which said that we must learn first before I would be an American human being. You must learn first how to tolerate frustration. The most important quality of an American. Tradition is the delay of gratification. You want to eat now. Oh wait until 6 o'clock. Baby cries we beat a monster. Did you want to go peepee No no no you got to wait till you get to the right place and back some people never to be accepted. Hold a save and take it home.
You're not going to fall apart along side somebody might hear the noise and then what would they say. But the most important quality of humanness in our tradition is you'll must relate immediate gratification. How long can you hold my. Baby you can hold out forever so that in a heavy bag you'll get gratified. That's a very basic. It's a very basic. Human tentacle ethic. That you work hard to day and put your money in the bank and save it don't spend it don't buy anything save the money so that in a few years when you think you've got some the bank will close and you won't have it left you will have to spend it because spending it will do any good anyway. You guys spending is to do the devil's work
because it might give you some fun and you're not supposed to have fun. And you're not supposed to have fun if it's called SE X. I can't say the word mommy. Although I have the right set here remember our very basic American tradition exemplified in the stolid letter. And she's got to walk through life with as big a on. There was a whole field of bowling early fall up for bears because this is what the puritanical ethic is about. That you gotta want to reach heaven. You've got to want to advance yourself you've got to want to become more and more a great achiever. You've got to want to work but you don't need to be gratified. You don't even have to have a good day's salary for your work. You just got to work because that's next to godliness. Work is next to godliness that's American puritanical ethic. Book thing is don't enjoy it.
That's American by the way which is quite different from some of the things that are happening in America today. Let me give you a few more American traditions so that we can look at what's happening in these American traditions and how they do us both good and bad. A fuel mall you're not supposed to express directly your sexual aggression your sexual feelings your aggressive feelings. You're supposed to do it indirectly. You never supposed to go. I had him on the back is supposed to stick the pins in his dodge ball in the doll about it although he was told to go out and face this. Ultimately his mother must have given him another message that it isn't nice to go out and fight. Here she said it isn't nice to run away but I'll wager your mother also told you nice boys don't fight. My mother said nice boys don't carry big packages. She thought she was preparing to be an office in the USA. I come in from the three years of the I mean in the US Army that was
one of the things you got the handbook. I wasn't listed man in the US Army in World War 2. What do you want to have hears and they made an officer out of me and the general been the Barzani said I hope you cannot forget some of the bad habit she will quiet as an enlisted man. And I think if I didn't if I didn't get no are going to get a chance to come home overseas I would have said you could take it you know what. What do you think I was doing is it listed me and I was I got a handbook on how to be an officer. I want to link you said an officer never carries a package. You're so right. I never did that I know. I wonder if I pick up a bit higher out rank you. Yes that's right. One of the other things you can do is push a baby carriage. Not many of you about. That's right you have to take field of. Remember when I back from China and going backwards my friend was one of the members that
traded with me the Chinese never understood I want going back. And I came or something. And West Pointers came down the street and I was here. Rosalie turning to me here knows whether because I think it was that I would probably never bother I mean if I didn't know may have either I dunno maybe or kept for the tradition went on because that version. Exactly so I would hope that the tradition was the uniform that what it stood for what a history of it was and the demand that your obey the tradition. No matter who wore the uniform because the tradition was Army. I just wanted to more American traditions and I'll go
back now to go to the chip. Some of the other aspects that I want to learn more is that in this country and American must follow the tradition of loyalty. We even make was compelling people to be loyal. We think loyalty is important. Loyalty to your family loyalty to your clan loyalty to the mafia if you happen to be a cosa nostra. If you're not a cosa knows he might be a kosher nose pressed and you also have to be loyal. It makes no difference which has no history of along with as long as it's ours and then yeah. After the horrible odds are it's ours you have to be one of the box. And yet America is one of the great traditions is to be loyal to us. That a loyalty is a very big art. Why did the Secret Society. I remember going to like that overturned I gotta learn it and shake I say you know how do you know what are the not of the right and say OK so you got a right hand shake you got to hack when I was a kid we used to wear shifter buttons I don't like that my shifters or something. All the secrets
decided that we were very loyal to the Masons. Pity isn't the only obvious these are secret societies and we must always be loyal. Swear the oath we all keep it a secret and so on. And this is true even of the claim of a planter who Klux Klan bought up tremendous sense of loyalty and that's part of American tradition. I kinda want to give you a few more traditions I want to give you one more but I think it's not only America but it is universal and these are the traditions that surround the life of Christ. Johnny was talking about one of the great crises of life. These are the human qualities that transcend all nations and all cultures and all play a life crisis we are born. We grow up. We get married there is we have sex. We get old and we die. These are life crises the life cycle of the species of men that Shakespeare
call that every human being on earth must go through and around read is fine I mean what do I pricey. Around these big issues of light. Every day people have developed a tradition you're born on and if you happen to be born in a Jewish family you'll have a circumcision or you'll have a baptismal baptism in a Christian family or you have some other kind of ceremony of birth. As you grow up you have to be confirmed in some way that you have now moved from childhood into manhood if you decide then you're going to become married you go through a ritual a tradition whether that tradition is to get married or not to get married in some cultures the tradition is not to. But you go through traditions. You get sick there are traditions and when you die there are traditions. The funeral the burial and so on. A man cannot live without tradition.
He cannot live without his culture. He cannot live without his heritage. He cannot live it and be compelled to rediscover electricity every day. You cannot rediscover what it means to be human be it has already been discovered for 10000 years all. Somewhere we need to have the essence of humanity given to us more rapidly without having to go through the rediscovery of it all the time and tradition is one way. But every time we follow tradition we give up the peace of freedom because tradition like revelation like mole there's not permitted variation. If you follow the tradition you have no war plan. You cannot be yourself. To the extent that you follow tradition and the moral of the dogs.
You aren't following tradition. The fewer degrees of freedom you have. So one of the great paradoxes one of the great dilemmas of the human capability is how to use tradition and not give up free how to be able to adapt to the world's history not to be anarchic and say there's nothing good about anything that happened before. And have to go through rediscovery all of human history. But the take what is good from it without having to swallow it as if it were only revelation to be able to modify a chain try to improve upon. This is the great paradox of the human condition and this is the issue of American tradition today. America is in transition. Is America building new traditions on an anti traditional direction what are the hippies for example.
Hippies say we want to put on female I tire. Not female in the sense of being womanly like but all the things that we used to look down upon. As being unmanly long hair. Loss flowers poetry sing songs play the guitar. The so-called unmanly tradition the young people under 30 say we want these are mainly traditions not the earlier editions we want these up. We don't want the martial traditions of being a soldier being brave in song and play with little brass tin soldiers and learn to be so. We want peace instead of war. We don't want to have gratification in heaven. We want gratification. We want freedom. Man we want immediacy not Double-A which is the puritanical tradition. We don't want to feel victimized. By the idea that there is nothing we
can do about pollution about the environment. There is nothing we can do about slavery nothing we can do about economic exploitation there is something we can do. It is not revealed. We don't have to follow the tradition. Maybe we can do something about it. Even if we refuse to cooperate it is doing something about it. Passive resistance is very un-American by tradition and it's very much in the order of the under-30. I either go through this whole list. And you could find every one of the American traditions today being good against being rebelled against a tradition being established. As an anti tradition to the usual historical traditions of America during these develop over these last three hundred years since the Puritans founded America since Columbus came to America five hundred years ago. Now we traditions that I am talking about. Need
to be looked at ways need to be examined. And the problem about man is that man very often becomes irrational. He takes the tradition as if one had no right to examine the tradition. No right to question it nor right to deviate from it. And this is one of the great problems obvious human situation that parents very often say to the child I don't care what you think what you believe what you want what you want to do or don't want to do I say so I say so therefore that's what you must do. And this kind of demand for Congorilla is the conformism in my opinion now as a professional man is one of the great causes of psychopathology all. So I'd like to ask you this question. How do we preserve what is
good in tradition. Because there is much that we need we can't live without it. I don't think we can live with the very wasteful the throw away much of the good. And there is much in man that is good. And yet permit modification none conformism diversity difference. Individual and unique in this. How do we become in a world are we create a world a human situation in which the tradition will be to love the stranger instead of love the self and one's own god. How do you create a tradition. How do you create a new tradition which said that there is room in this world for an honest difference of opinion and that we don't have to kill people off because they have a different opinion or because they believe a different belief or have a different religion or have a different set of politics. You are not a run of the myths of this country is that if you want to hurt a
man if you want to get him if you want to put him on the spot you call him a commie. They used to call him a Jew. During the Inquisition in the early days of Christianity the core of a Christian. This is an old trick to call a man a name which is anti traditional and thereby want to hang him because tradition sometimes can be very brutal in its preservation because one of the things that tradition does. Is to try to conform and try to conserve tight try to preserve itself. I don't know the answer. I tend not to say. I cannot tell you how to create this human condition. I can only urge you not to accept tradition blindly. I can only urge you not to throw to the determination to wait behind the plate. But to be
discriminating in picking those traditions which can make our lives better. Awful film. You must increase degrees of freedom and to discard goals that no longer are useful. For instance one of the traditions in this country is. That whatever the sex of the child is you got to love it equally. It used to be that we only love male children because they were economically valuable that was a tradition for many thousands of years. But the American tradition is where there is a girl or boy it doesn't really matter and you know I mean it would be shocking to hear the wonder lying in a hospital instead of the Father. Which kind of a child you want like you go to a store and say I have a boy or I have a bottle of a kind of scotch and you say you want to know your set you want Johnny Walker that this guy you know take to I want a boy around a girl I want I want to pose a bisexual are you only sexual with your kid do that in America because the tradition is you're supposed to say oh it
doesn't matter as long as it's my child. We will love it and love it or Oh just the same. Well that's a load of malarkey nannied up you all. If I could I would. The other woman PR man. I want you to know I want you know Johnny's talking about a different problem. The fact of the matter is if he really had a choice he would make a choice. But one is not one is not allowed to say that in this tradition. Now what I'm suggesting to you is that it is rapidly going to become a tradition in this country that you will choose the sex of your child. Science is reaching the point where will make it possible for you to choose the sex of your child and it will become the American tradition to say I want to be right and you get the boy I want a girl you're going to gird whatever it's going to be. But the science is moving in the direction where that
tradition is no longer appropriate to the new world in which we're going to live. Another one we used to say beauty is only skin deep. So if you saw an ugly woman your boss and say she's ugly. I remember once getting slapped by my mom I was I said about some guest that came into the house. She she's ugly as hell dish me why she's a human being and if she's ugly or she's deformed or whatever it is you're supposed to say yes but I saw this beautiful. Eyes pretty hard sometimes there are times to solo if she's really that ugly. Well I want to tell you that it's so not going to be traditional to say she's ugly but she's got a beautiful soul. Because we're rapidly going to get into the age of what I call super nerd cosmetology. Cosmetics we're going to have super beauty products. In which you can look as beautiful as you want to love because we're going to find ways and means
of making us all beautiful and it will not only be that black is beautiful but white will also be beautiful. And it will not only be that that women will be beautiful of men also be beautiful and it will not be that only young will be beautiful but the old will be and that the hard way. Yes I think so. But I'm predicting that the traditions by which you and I are living will no longer obtain it will be an eye for history in the end not too many years ahead. Let me give you a few of the predictions I had. I write about three minutes. I would like to suggest. That. All of us have taken the position that if we can live to be threescore and ten that's a lot. It is the tradition in this country to talk about threescore and ten. I want you to know that that tradition is going to go by the laws. We are going to live longer. We're going to want to live forever. As we all do down deep and don't admit it. And what we will see is a person having a
corpse. And talking about it now suspended animation. They talk about that talking about a normal life expectancy being not less than 150. Heaven forbid. He said it was. Too soon to. What I'm suggesting is that these traditions are going to go by. As we begin to see a new world. A few other things I want to suggest. Maybe I have a 98 year old mother. Yes I know you know my story tells me that she wants to die. Don't believe her. I know but she says her friends are. Going takes care of herself. Fortunately the only thing I was mentioning was that some people don't want to live a hundred fifty years. I think that tradition will change. They are very.
Violent. I want to mention I have only a few more minutes. Two minutes more. I want to mention for your consideration. One more tradition is going to tree. It has been traditional that human beings have I suppose to be stimulated only by other human beings that it isn't human contact the stimulation crops. I want you to know the electronic age is a process. That with new psychedelics with new kinds of operators is the best selling in the sexual supermarkets in Denmark and in Sweden. That electronic stimulation will be part of the traditions of right. Now there are many more. I want to close with only one more call. The traditions of America. Are you in a sense the quintessence of the traditions of the history of man starting from taking man down to the present. We probably live in a country in which man has developed further at least in his body comforts in his health his
education than any time before larger numbers of people are living better than any time before in the history of the world. We are far from perfect but we have a lot of good traditions in the tradition of the great emancipator Abraham Lincoln. We have some very good human traditions don't throw them away. But at the same time. Don't be blind. There are a lot of traditions that are not worthy of preserving and that great effort on our part can change. Let us make us our new tradition a flexible tradition a tradition a flexibility a tradition an acceptance of diversity a tradition and the acceptance of human difference and individual uniqueness. Thank you very much. Now you all. You've heard of Dr. Emmanuel Schwartz psychologist and
psycho analyst speaking on the topic the psychology of tradition. This was one of the 1970 series of lectures recorded at the great hall of the Cooper Union in New York City by station WNYC. But German for the Cooper Union was Johnson a Fairchild. This program was distributed by the national educational radio network.
- Cooper Union forum
- Episode Number
- Fall 1970
- Contributing Organization
- University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
- AAPB ID
- AAPB Contributor Holdings
University of Maryland
Identifier: 70-SUPPL (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
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- Chicago: “Cooper Union forum; 1; Fall 1970,” University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed December 5, 2023, http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-500-rj48tw2c.
- MLA: “Cooper Union forum; 1; Fall 1970.” University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. December 5, 2023. <http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-500-rj48tw2c>.
- APA: Cooper Union forum; 1; Fall 1970. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-500-rj48tw2c