[Ads-l] FW: "Rearranging Their Prejudices" Quote

Baker, John JBAKER at STRADLEY.COM
Wed Sep 21 17:31:33 EDT 2016


(Originally sent, by accident, just to Joel.)

I now have this back to 1906.  This is from Zion's Herald (Nov. 7, 1906) (ProQuest American Periodicals), a weekly publication that seems to have been affiliated in some manner with the Methodist Episcopal Church.  It appears in an account of the annual session of the General Executive Committee of the Women's Foreign Missionary Society:

<<Bishop Oldham scored with his audience with a _bon mot_ to the effect that some people "think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices.">>

I presume that Bishop Oldham is William Fitzjames Oldham, who is the subject of a fairly detailed Wikipedia article.


John Baker



-----Original Message-----
From: American Dialect Society [mailto:ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] On Behalf Of Joel Berson
Sent: Tuesday, September 20, 2016 11:05 PM
To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU
Subject: Re: "Rearranging Their Prejudices" Quote

A little later than my question, Peter Reitan (I think) wrote:
-----
The Appeal (St. Paul, Minnesota), April 22, 1922, page 2 (Chronicling America).


William Jennings Bryan's recent attack on the theory of evolution causes the Reverend George Craig Stewart to cry out: "Mr. Bryan is a conspicuous example of the man who thinks he is thinking, but who is only rearranging his prejudices.  Few men really think.-----

Of course this is 11 years later than the anonymous "clever preacher" quote.

Joel


      From: "Baker, John" <JBAKER at STRADLEY.COM>
 To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU 
 Sent: Tuesday, September 20, 2016 3:54 PM
 Subject: Re: [ADS-L] "Rearranging Their Prejudices" Quote
   
The identity of the "clever preacher" is not given, if indeed there was such; it may have been just a rhetorical device.  This seems to be a column of thoughts suitable for a prayer meeting discussion, on how people could improve themselves for the new year.  It also ran, a few days later, in the Charlotte News and the Wichita Daily Eagle.  Here's the full title and byline:

THOSE NEW YEAR RESOLUTIONS.
Terse Comments Upon the Uniform Prayer-Meeting Topic of the Young People's Societies--Christian Endeavor, etc.,--for December 31:  "Things I Want to Do Better Next Year."  Phil. 3: 12-14.
BY WILLIAM T. ELLIS

And here is the full paragraph in which it is found, for context:

"You think you are thinking, when really you are only rearranging your prejudices," said one clever preacher to another.  Original mental operations are rare.  Some of us have about as much intellectual individuality as a phonograph record.  We seldom indulge in the luxury of solid, consecutive thought.  This will be a better year for all whose resolution is to do a little more thinking, and along wholesome lines.  The life is the product of the mind.


John Baker






-----Original Message-----
From: American Dialect Society [mailto:ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] On Behalf Of Joel Berson
Sent: Tuesday, September 20, 2016 2:35 PM
To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU
Subject: Re: "Rearranging Their Prejudices" Quote

Is "one clever preacher" Dr. [of Divinity] X?  Now can you come up with his name?


Joel


      From: "Baker, John" <JBAKER at STRADLEY.COM>
 To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU 
 Sent: Tuesday, September 20, 2016 12:31 PM
 Subject: Re: [ADS-L] "Rearranging Their Prejudices" Quote
  
And this takes it back to 1911.  From the Los Angeles Daily Times (Dec. 23, 1911) (Newspapers.com):  ""You think you are thinking, when really you are only rearranging your prejudices," said one clever preacher to another"


John Baker



-----Original Message-----
From: American Dialect Society [mailto:ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] On Behalf Of Tim Stewart
Sent: Tuesday, September 20, 2016 12:09 PM
To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU
Subject: Re: "Rearranging Their Prejudices" Quote

Here's an antedating to September 1918.

Title: Biblical World
Issue: September 1918
volume 52 (LII)
number 2
p. 140

[begin excerpt]
Thinking is facing the new world in a new temper. At a reception a
gentleman remarked, as he looked over toward a Doctor of Divinity who
seemed deep in solitary meditation apart from the crowd, "Dr. X seems to be
thinking deeply!" "No, indeed," replied the friend, "Dr. X is not thinking;
he is just rearranging his prejudices."
[end excerpt]

URL:
https://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=hvd.32044105219372;view=1up;seq=172


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Read excerpts from the forthcoming *Dictionary of Christianese
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On Tue, Sep 20, 2016 at 10:58 AM, Shapiro, Fred <fred.shapiro at yale.edu>
wrote:

> In the Yale Book of Quotations, 1st edition, I list the following
> quotation under Knute Rockne:
>
>
> Most men, when they think they are thinking, are merely rearranging their
> prejudices.
>
> Quoted in Reader's Digest, Oct. 1927
>
>
> While working on the 2nd edition of the YBQ, I have realized that this
> quote was undoubtedly around before Rockne.  I would welcome any citations
> or leads pushing it back in time.  Probably "rearranging their prejudices",
> "rearrange their prejudices", "rearranging his prejudices," etc. are the
> key phrases to search for.
>
>
> Fred Shapiro
>
>
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
>

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The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org


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The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org


  

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The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org


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The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org


   

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The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org


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The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org


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