From Susan Buck-Morss.

“The figure of Candide expresses the undeniable political experience of guilt we humans feel when witnessing something deeply wrong with the principles that govern our everyday world.  Something in the official order – evident but not acknowledged, spoken about but not known – contradicts its own sense of moral right.  But because the authorities who speak for the whole tolerate, practice, and benefit from it, this order continues.  The truth, available to conscious perception, is at the same time ‘disavowed,’ to use Sibylle Fischer’s felicitous term, and moral imagination finds itself in conflict with social obedience.  Political guilt has its own ambivalence, because refusing to do your socially prescribed duty in order to do right entails being a traitor to the collective that claims you (through nation or class, religion or race) and risking the loss of the collective’s protection as a consequence” (83).

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