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Saturday, February 5, 2011

Wendell Phillips

"Revolutions are not made: they come.  A revolution is as natural a growth as an oak.  It comes out of the past.  Its foundations are laid far back."

American Abolitionist, Orator, Lawyer, Author
1811- 1884

What, you might ask, do revolutions have to do with creativity?  Revolutions are a creative response to the status quo and happen at all levels of society.  Revolutions are happening in literature and art as each generation rejects the styles of previous generations.  Consider how Impressionism, Cubism and Abstract Expressionism started out as movements outside the mainstream.  

Revolutionaries have to think outside the box.  They have to be willing to see the world through new eyes.  The abolitionists stood up against slavery.  The civil rights activists stood up against segregation.  Wendell Phillips also said:  "Physical bravery is an animal instinct, moral bravery is a much higher and truer courage."  

What risks are you taking in your art?  Your writing?  Are you challenging the status quo?  Are you standing up for what is right?  Are you looking at the world with fresh eyes?  Creative leaders have to think outside the box.  They need to risk trying new techniques — new ways of thinking.

Wendell Phillips was born in Boston, Massachusetts and graduated from Harvard Law School.  He was a powerful speaker and became a voice of the anti-slavery movement.