To me, the irony of this involvement with size, as I observed earlier, is the unwillingness or inability of so many Americans to identify themselves with something as vast as the United States. Bigger cars, bigger parking lots, bigger corporate structures, bigger farms, bigger drug stores, bigger supermarkets, bigger motion-picture screens. The tangible and the functional expand, while the intangible and the beautiful shrink. Left to wither is the national purpose, national educational needs, literature and theater, and our critical faculties. The national dialogue is gradually being lost in a froth of misleading self-congratulation and cliche. National needs and interests are slowly being submerged by the national preoccupation with the irrelevant.
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Source Notes: Source: Senator J. WILLIAM FULBRIGHT, In Need of a Consensus, Penrose Memorial Lecture, delivered to the American Philosophical Society, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, April 20, 1961.Proceedings of the Society, August 1961, p. 352.
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