Friedrich Nietzsche (1883-1888)
"Modernity" in the perspective of the metaphor of nourishment and digestion
"Sensibility immensely more irritable (-dressed up moralistically: the increase in pity-); the abundance of disparate impressions greater than ever: cosmopolitanism in foods, literatures, newspapers, forms, tastes, even landscapes. The tempo of this influx prestissimo; the impressions erase each other; one instinctively resists taking in anything, taking anything deeply, to "digest" anything; a weakening of the power to digest results from this. A kind of adaptation to this flood of impressions takes place: men unlearn spontaneous action, they merely react to stimuli from outside. They spend their strength partly in assimilating things, partly in defense, partly in opposition. Profound weakening of spontaneity: the historian, critic, analyst, the interpreter, the observer, the collector, the reader-all of them reactive talents -all science!
Artificial change of one's nature into a "mirror"; interested but, as it were, merely epidermically interested; a coolness on principle, a balance, a fixed low temperature closely underneath the thin surface on which warmth, movement, "tempest," and the play of waves are encountered.
Opposition of external mobility and a certain deep heaviness and weariness."
Friedrich Nietzsche (Spring-Fall 1887; rev. Spring-Fall 1888)