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Writers and the Golden Age [UK]:
Artists as citizens may belong to right or left, and some of their work may be inspired by political sentiments. [...] But their serious work is different. It’s not a matter of opinions, but of feelings and perceptions. In serious work the distinction between right and left has little to do with party politics, or even with immediate political issues. It’s to do rather with two things, which are closely connected: the nature of man and the location of the Golden Age.

The Left, ever since Rousseau, has seen man as essentially good, in chains only on account of the institutions of a cruel and corrupt society. [...] For the Left the Golden Age is still to come.

The Right, however, sees our nature as essentially flawed. [...] So the Golden Age is always in the past.

Left-wing artists, however angry, are optimists; right-wing ones, however serene or witty, are pessimists. [...]
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