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The Ishmael Companion
Beyond Civilization
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  The Ishmael Community: Questions and Answers

The Question (ID Number 469)...

    I may be confused about the inclusion of Michael Time in your website.....Is it a belief that changes for survival will come from the bungled searching of the roots of society - from the revolutionaries who don't understand what they seek but only know they have to find it? I would hope that some more vital upwelling could provide a wave of change....It just seems so far off when the Michaels of the world lead the way. He has so many personal issues, he seems far removed from an unselfish cause.

    ...and the response:

    You're examining my motives for the "inclusion" of Michael on my website as if he were a character in one of my novels. I could explain to you my motives for the inclusion in Ishmael of, say, Art Owens or Mrs. Sokolow, because these are characters invented to perform a specific narrative function, which they dutifully perform. A character in a novel might "search for the roots of society" or "lead the way" (as you suggest), but alas, Michael is just like you and me, an ordinary human, getting through the days of his life as best he can. He isn't a symbol or a prototype, any more than you are, nor is he anywhere proposed as one.


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