Wherefore a soul of clay, capable of discerning at one glance, the relations, and consequences of an infinite number of ideas, that are difficult to apprehend, would be evidently preferable to a heavy and stupid soul, formed of the most precious elements."
— Julien Offray de La Mettrie (1709-1751)
Text from Man a Machine. Translated from the French of the Marquiss D'Argens. (London: Printed for W. Owen, 1749). <Link to ECCO>
Reading Man a Machine and Man a Plant, trans. Richard A. Watson and Maya Rybalka (Indianapolis: Hackett, 1994). Translation based on version from La Mettrie's Oeuvres philosophiques (Berlin: 1751).