page 107 of 752 of My Past and Thoughts: The Memoirs of Alexander Herzen

“They talk in Western Europe of our duplicity and wily cunning; they mistake the desire to show off and swagger a bit for the desire to deceive”, about how the Russians feel insecure and inferior about their own peculiar culture vs Western Europe’s supposed refinement.

His college years of activism is colored by the ever present threat in Russia of secret police and Siberian exile. Nobody can afford conconspiracy.