In his essay "The Creative Dilemma" James Baldwin asserts that it is necessary for artists to be isolated from society. He says: "Perhaps the primary distinction of the artist must actively cultivate the state of which most men, necessarily, must avoid: The state of being alone. " Baldwin also says that: "The artist himself, in order to point out that everybody is all alone, must himself remain isolated. " Who is the arist? Why should the artist be isolated? I don't understand ANYTHING. After speaking to others on the web, I found the answer. The life of the artist is generally a lonely one. While most men avoid being alone, the artist must cultivate it. His vision is a delicate plant, which rough society can trample over. Could Dostoevsky have written Crhyme and Punishment among a crowd of people? How about da Vinci while sketching the design for a flying machine? Artistry comes to fruition in solitude. When Baldwin talks about "the artist," he means any artist. Good luck with the essay.