More than once did Elizabeth, in her ramble within the park, unexpectedly meet Mr. Darcy. She felt all the perverseness of the mischance that should bring him where no one else was brought, and, to prevent its ever happening again, took care to inform him at first that it was a favourite haunt of hers. How it could occur a second time, therefore, was very odd! Yet it did, and even a third. It seemed like wilful ill-nature, or a voluntary penance, for on these occasions it was not merely a few formal inquiries and an awkward pause and then away, but he actually thought it necessary to turn back and walk with her.
Scripture points out this difference between believers and unbelievers; the latter, as old slaves of their incurable perversity, cannot endure the rod; but the former, like children of noble birth, profit by repentance and correction.
John CalvinGolden Booklet of the True Christian Life, pg. 57
My fantasy since I was a small child was to dominate a dominating man. That turns me on more than anything, a man who does not want to be dominated—like Sean Connery, a really macho man. The kind of man who has no desire for submission. It’s truly perverse. It’s the powerplay: who has it, how long you have it for, and what you do with it.
I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to His tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquility and Union.
I gave someone a perverse argument not so long ago about why advertising is better than movies. You want to hear it? Movies operate from a really disingenuous premise, that people are heroes. I know a lot of people and have had an opportunity over the years to observe them. Are they heroes...? Let's put it this way. Advertising tries something simpler and more believable: Products as heroes. I guess the idea is: When all else fails, put your faith in conditioner.
Yet I am not more sure that my soul lives, than I am that perverseness is one of the primitive impulses of the human heart—one of the indivisible primary faculties, or sentiments, which give direction to the character of Man.
Edgar Allan Poe, "The Black Cat" (1843), reprinted in Philip Van Doren Stern, ed., Edgar Allan Poe (1945), p. 299.
Occasionally, I will do a conspicuous miracle to save one dying child while a thousand children starve elsewhere. This will convince sensible people I am perverse, and they will curse my name. Be sure to recruit those who do, they'll be invaluable.
Sheri S. Tepper, The Visitor (2002), the small god in Ch. 44 : the visitor.