"Civilized society is perpetually menaced with disintegration through this primary hostility of men towards one another"
- Sigmund Freud
About this Quote
Sigmund Freud's quote speaks to the idea that the really material of society is constantly threatened by the intrinsic hostility between individuals. He suggests that this hostility is a natural part of humanity, and that it is a force that can easily tear apart the social order. Freud's quote suggests that the only way to keep a civilized society is to recognize and address this hostility, and to discover methods to handle it. This could include things like establishing laws and policies to make sure that people treat each other with regard, or developing systems of justice to make sure that individuals are held responsible for their actions. Eventually, Freud's quote suggests that if we are to keep a civilized society, we must be aware of the capacity for hostility between people and take actions to manage it.
"I know of no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society but the people themselves; and if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them but to inform their discretion"