“A common oblivion obliterates everything… The being that I shall be after death has no more reason to remember the man I have been since my birth than the latter to remember what I was before it.”
“And my eyes resting upon her fair hair, her blue eyes, the lines of her neck… I cried out with myself as I admired this deliberately unfinished sketch: ‘How lovely she is! What true nobility! It is indeed a proud Guermantes.’”
Unlike hundreds of other writers and scholars, Pinker does correctly attribute (the oft-misattributed phrase) “Murder your darlings” to Sir Arthur Quiller-Couch found in On the Art of Writing.