U.S. Intellectual History Blog

A Quote for Tuesday

“The temporal structure of everyday life confronts me as a facticity with which I must reckon, that is, with which I must try to synchronize my own projects. I encounter time in everyday reality as continuous and finite. All my existence in this world is continuously ordered by its time, is indeed enveloped by it. My own life is an episode in the externally facticious stream of time. It was there before I was born and it will be there after I die. The knowledge of my inevitable death makes this time finite for me. I have only a certain amount of time available for the realization of my projects, and the knowledge of this affects my attitude to these projects. Also, since I do not want to die, this knowledge injects an underlying anxiety into my projects.”

Peter L. Berger and Thomas Luckmann, The Social Construction of Reality (New York: Anchor, 1966), 27.