Saturday, 2 February 2013

INSIGHT, APHORISM & MAXIM: Hedy Lamarr on "The Two-Sided Argument"

(1914 - 2000)

One of the great movie stars of Hollywood’s golden age, Hedy Lamarr was not only considered one of the most beautiful women to ever grace the silver screen but also one of the most intelligent.  Amongst movie credits that include such films as Algiers, White Cargo and Samson and Delilah, she is also recognized as the co-inventor of “spread spectrum” technology; used by the military up to this day for satellite defense communication systems, it is also the technological basis behind the operation of cellular phones and fax machines.

In 1966 she published her autobiography Ecstasy and Me: My Life as a Woman.  In the 34th and last chapter of the book, the inimitable actress/inventor passed along “a few tips” she had learned by her 51st year.  The following is but one example:

It isn’t true that there are two sides to every coin.  Some arguments only have one side.  Some people are so wrong about some things there couldn’t be another side. Too many people live by these old-fashioned aphorisms that are wrong (Lamarr, 253).

"Two, you say?!  Alright, I'll give you my side and then I'll give you it again!!"

Lamarr, Hedy.  Ecstasy and Me: My Life as a Woman. New York: Fawcett World   
            Library, 1967.

Photo of Hedy Lamarr courtesy of Hedy Lamarr: The Official Site,

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