CORVALLIS - Forty-three quotations - submitted by students, faculty, staff and alumni at Oregon State University, soon will adorn the courtyard of The Valley Library on campus, more than halfway through a $40 million expansion.
The quotations, carved in granite, were chosen to create a mosaic of ideas that span the many decades of learning that have gone on at Oregon State. A quotation by educational philosopher Henry Brooks Adams perhaps best expresses the philosophy of the project and the library:
"They know enough who know how to learn."
Some of the quotations were chosen for local ties, including one from Oregon author Beverly Cleary, popular writer of children's novels, including the Ramona series. "My mother had this enchanted world of reading, and I wanted in."
Others are historic, and inspirational. "Do not yield to difficulties, but rise above discouragements," wrote Abigail Scott Duniway, a nationally known Oregon suffragette..
Some of the quotations have special meaning to the university. One is an excerpt from "A New Life," written by Pulitzer Prize-winning author Bernard Malamud, who was on the OSU faculty from 1949 to 1961.
"Levin walked in the cold rain, the wettest, dreariest he had ever been in. The town was tight around the shoulders, the wet streets long and dark, streetlights obscure at corners. A man could drown in mid-block and nobody would know."
Another quotation with special relevance to OSU is from the late Linus Pauling, two-time Nobel Prize laureate and a 1922 graduate of the university. "If I couldn't find a place for something, then I would change my picture of the world until I understood where it fit in."
Some are more contemporary, and poignant.
"The uppermost thought of a farm worker - and I know because I've been one - is to have something better for his kids," said Ramona Salazar Flores, an Oregon Employment Division representative for migrant seasonal farm workers, in a 1992 story in The Oregonian.
And finally, there is a quotation from former Oregon Gov. Tom McCall.
"Heroes are not giant statues framed against a red sky. They are people who say: 'This is my community, and it's my responsibility to make it better.'"
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Les Risser, 541-737-2610