Pragmatic self-loathing

“There is nothing truly beautiful but that which can never be of any use whatever; everything useful is ugly, for it is the expression of some need, and man’s needs are ignoble and disgusting like his own poor and infirm nature.  The most useful place in a house is the water-closet.” — Theophile Gautier, quoted in “The Writer and Politics: A Litany” (from Tests of Time, by William H. Gass)

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