Patrimony - Philip Roth

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We're the sons appalled by violence, with no capacity for inflicting physical pain, unfit to pulverize even the most deserving enemy. We have teeth as the cannibals do, imbedded in our jaws, the better to help us articulate. When we lay waste, it isn't with raging fists or ruthless schemes or insane sprawling violence but with our words, our brains, with mentality, with all the stuff that produced the poignant abyss between our fathers and us and that they themselves broke their backs to give us.

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