Barbara Wootton reflecting on her life

BwNorwayS'...the only human experience of which we have certain knowledge is that which falls between birth and death; which invokes no supernatural sanction; and which derives its precepts from the importance of promoting happiness and welfare here on earth.' [1971, Contemporary Britain, p.88]

'If I were to be granted the realization of one wish on behalf of the human race, that wish would be that the love of two people for one another should always begin and end at the same moment in each case.' [1967, In a World I Never Made, p.185]

'Life is too short for us to make our own social and moral clothes.' [1950, Testament for Social Science, p.156]

 'My life and career seem to have been more like a series of accidents happening to me than a pattern of my own making.' [1967, In a World I Never Made, p.278]

 '...all the successful reforms in the world have been instigated by powerful emotional drives and all reformers have been motivated by emotional disturbances.' [1971, Contemporary Britain, p.72]

'...of good fortune I have had my share. For more than forty years I had, one way or another, what at least in later life seems the essential foundation of stable happiness – a congenial companion at home with whom to share the day's  events.  I have travelled far and often, I have enjoyed recognition and success, and I have lived to see much of what I have striven for actually come to pass...Nature has, moreover, endowed me with an active mind, the exercise of which has from the days of my adolescence been both a continual source of enjoyment and a constant comfort in adversity. But inasmuch as my deepest satisfactions have lain in personal relations or in the pleasures of the countryside, they have depended neither on exceptional opportunity nor on unusual talent.' [1967, In a World I Never Made, p.143]