A Commonplace

What is a commonplace?



Many situations are best met by a temporal approach requiring a rapid pace of life: speed, attention to the clock , a future orientation, the ability to value time as money. Other domains in life - rest, leisure, the incubation of ideas, social relationships - are more adequately met with a relaxed attitude toward time. The person, or the culture, who combines both modes in a temporal repertoire - or even better, who can draw upon a multiplicity of modes - is more likely to be up to all occasions. Jeremy Rifkin speaks of the dangers of temporal ghettos. People who are confined to rigid temporal bands are unprepared to determine their own futures and political fates. To have the ability to move quickly when the occasion demands it, to let go when the pressure stops, and to understand the many temporal shades of grey may be the real answer to the question "Which pace of life is best?"

A Geography of Time - Robert Levine