1 (a): to bring together into one body or place; (b): to gather or exact from a number of persons or sources; (c): to gather an accumulation of (objects) especially as a hobby
2: infer, deduce
3: to gain or regain control of 
4: to claim as due and receive payment for
5: to get and bring with one; specifically: pick up


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Collect (v.): early 15th century, from Old French collecter “to collect,” from Latin collectus “gather together,” from com- “together” + legere to gather” (related to: lecture).  As an adjective meaning “paid by recipient” it is attested from 1893, originally with reference to telegrams.




"One cannot collect all the beautiful shells on the beach."

Anne Spencer (1882-1975, Anne Bethel Scales Bannister Spencer, Harlem Renaissance poet, civil rights activist, librarian, teacher, and gardener; a daughter of former slaves; at the age of 11, her mother enrolled her in school for the first time at Virginia Theology Seminary and College, she graduated 6 years later as valedictorian)

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“Inside the museums, | Infinity goes up on trial | Voices echo this is what salvation must be like after a while”

Bob Dylan (b. Robert Allen Zimmerman in 1941, songwriter, singer, artist, writer, and poet; influential in popular culture for more than 50 years)

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“It is good to collect things, but it is better to go on walks.” 

Anatole France (1844-1924, Jacques Anatole Thibault French, philosopher, poet, journalist, novelist and art critic; writer of fantasy and satire; and the recipient of The Nobel Prize in Literature in 1921)

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“On a good day, even writing can feel like a form of collecting—of gathering words, images, and ideas and arranging them in an order that feels right.” 

Amanda Petrusich (contributing writer for Pitchfork, contributing editor at The Oxford American, musician and culture writer, whose work has appeared in The New York Times, The Atlantic, Spin, BuzzFeed; also author of “Do Not Sell At Any Price: The Wild, Obsessive Hunt for the World’s Rarest 78rpm Records”)

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“To own a certain book - and to choose it without help - is to define yourself.” 

Julian Barnes (b. 1946, author of several books, essays, stories, and numerous novels, including the acclaimed, "The Noise of Time")

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“The library will endure; it is the universe. As for us, everything has not been written; we are not turning into phantoms. We walk the corridors, searching the shelves and rearranging them, looking for lines of meaning amid leagues of cacophony and incoherence, reading the history of the past and our future, collecting our thoughts and collecting the thoughts of others, and every so often glimpsing mirrors, in which we may recognize creatures of the information.” 

Jorge Luis Borges (1899—1986, Argentine poet, essayist, and short-story writer whose works have become classics of 20th-century world literature)

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"Electronic medical records are, in a lot of ways, I think the aspect of technology that is going to revolutionize the way we deliver care. And it's not just that we will be able to collect information, it's that everyone involved in the healthcare enterprise will be able to use that information more effectively."

Risa Lavizzo-Mourey (b. 1954, medical doctor, policymaker, professor, nonprofit executive, and the president and CEO of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation since 2003)

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“Inside the museums, | Infinity goes up on trial |Voices echo this is what salvation must be like after a while” — Bob Dylan


I recently visited an exhibit at the Rollins College’s Cornell Fine Arts Museum entitled, “The Black Figure in the European Imagery.”

Cornell is a jewel of a museum, and is absolutely one of my favorites.   Although, I’m good at filtering information I tend to like smaller museums, because I don’t get swallowed up in the minutiae of visual and literary information.  But, once I know what to look for, with the help of the art historians and curators, slowly I can begin synthesize the information.  Sometimes, though, it can take me a few visits.

I went by myself the first time, hoping to get a tour, but to no avail.  Then a few days later, I was fortunate via email to be invited to a lecture by Dr. Adrienne Childs, the Harvard scholar, art historian and co-curator of the exhibit.  I was especially excited to go with my dear friend, Carole.

Dr. Child’s knowledge and expertise about this 19th century fine art was so deep and vast that it took me a bit to reconcile that these beautiful pieces of fine art were tainted with chains and enslavement.

There was one sculpture piece Dr. Childs featured that shocked me so, I could barely breathe.  It was of a beautiful dark-skin black man that clothed in the finest of fabric and jewels.  But, when Dr. Childs shined her laser to his neck she pointed out a collar with the lock.  The man did not come from nobility, but was a slave who was being used by like a luxury item, as a status symbol for the European wealthy.  It was shocking to see that these men, women, and children were objectified to that extent.  What’s even more shocking is this art is still being created and collected today in Europe.

The last time I visited the exhibit I met my dear friend, Sharon.  It was wonderful to see it through her eyes, because Sharon bought a unique perspective and saw angles I wasn’t able to recognize by myself.

Although, we were witnessing deep sadness and grief in the faces of those who were portrayed in these art pieces, magically the exhibition salvage these people’s dignities.  These curators gave voice to the exploited, connected the dots to the truth, and provided in-roads for us in our contemporary world to save ourselves.

Dr. Ena Heller, the director of the Cornell Fine Arts Museum, said it best when she wrote:

The exhibition The Black Figure in the European Imagery is an invitation to embark on a journey — a journey to define the conceptual space of this “imaginary,” to explore the constructs around the representations of black figures, and to consider their historical meaning and their ramifications in today’s world.

With new information, sojourners, we are rewiring our minds and enlightening our souls.  Let’s stay awake, sisters and brothers!

Faithfully Yours, Tonya


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