Book Review: Prisons We Choose to Live In

By Catherine Austin Fitts

What a remarkable thing it is to hear the voice of someone who is both sensible and understands the world around her. In 1985 Doris Lessing gave five lectures under the auspices of the Massy Lectures of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. They were then published as a small book, Prisons We Choose to Live Inside. I read it long ago, when reading Lessing’s science fiction novel The Making of the Representative for Planet 8. While moving some books this weekend, it fell out of a pile and beckoned to me. I read it again.

Here is a gentle voice that inspires us to see ourselves as we really are and calls us to be more – to what we could be if we are willing to face things. Here is a voice that makes a profoundly intelligent case for optimism.

“This is a time when it is frightening to be alive, when it is hard to think of human beings as rational creatures. Everywhere we look we see brutality, stupidity, until it seems that there is nothing else to be seen but that – a descent into barbarism, everywhere. Which we are unable to check. But I think that while it is true there is a general worsening, it is precisely because things are so frightening we become hypnotized, and do not notice – or if we notice, belittle – equally strong forces on the other side, the forces, in short, of reason, sanity and civilization.” ~From the first lecture, “When in the Future They Look Back on Us”

This book is a gem, not to be missed.

Related Reading:

Prisons We Choose to Live Inside

Wikipedia on Doris Lessing

Wikipedia on Prisons We Choose to Live Inside

Wikipedia on The Making of the Representative for Planet 8