Literature Quotes

A theatre, a literature, an artistic expression that does not speak for its own time has no relevance.

DARIO FO

This, indeed, is one of the eternal paradoxes of both life and literature-that without passion little gets done; yet, without control of that passion, its effects are largely ill or null.

F. L. Lucas

There have been a number of us working very, very hard to bring myth and fairy tales into public consciousness, through fantasy literature and other media. I hope we're succeeding in some small way.

Terri Windling

Expediency of literature, reason of literature, lawfulness of writing down a thought, is questioned; much is to say on both sides, and, while the fight waxes hot, thou, dearest scholar, stick to thy foolish task, add a line every hour, and between whiles add a line.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

If the fires of freedom and civil liberties burn low in other lands, they must be made brighter in our own. If in other lands the press and books and literature of all kinds are censored, we must redouble our efforts here to keep them free.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt

Ultimately, literature is nothing but carpentry. With both you are working with reality, a material just as hard as wood.

Gabriel Garcia Marquez

As I was writing about Grace Marks, and about her interlude in the Asylum, I came to see her in context the context of other people's opinions, both the popular images of madness and the scientific explanations for it available at the time. A lot of what was believed and said on the subject appears like sheer lunacy to us now. But we shouldn't be too arrogant how many of our own theories will look silly when those who follow us have come up with something better? But whatever the scientists may come up with, writers and artists will continue to portray altered mental states, simply because few aspects of our nature fascinate people so much. The so-called mad person will always represent a possible future for every member of the audience who knows when such a malady may strike? When "mad," at least in literature, you aren't yourself; you take on another self, a self that is either not you at all, or a truer, more elemental one than the person you're used to seeing in the mirror. You're in danger of becoming, in Shakespeare's works, a mere picture or beast, and in Susanna Moodie's words, a mere machine; or else you may become an inspired prophet, a truth-sayer, a shaman, one who oversteps the boundaries of the ordinarily visible and audible, and also, and especially, the ordinarily sayable. Portraying this process is deep power for the artist, partly because it's a little too close to the process of artistic creation itself, and partly because the prospect of losing our self and being taken over by another, unfamiliar self is one of our deepest human fears.

Margaret Eleanor Atwood

The day is past when schools could afford to give sufficient time and attention to the teaching of the ancient languages to enable the student to get that enjoyment out of classical literature that made the lives of our grandfathers so rich.

James Loeb

Who ever heard, indeed, of an autobiography that was not (interesting)? I can recall none in all the literature of the world

Henry Louis Mencken

I was guilty of judging capitalism by its operations and socialism by its hopes and aspirations; capitalism by its works and socialism by its literature.

Sidney Hook

The crown of literature is poetry.

William Somerset Maugham

Literature was formerly an art and finance a trade; today it is the reverse

Joseph Roux

Facts are not science - as the dictionary is not literature.

Martin H. Fischer

The attempt to devote oneself to literature alone is a most deceptive thing, and often, paradoxically, it is literature that suffers for it.

Vaclav Havel

There is a cheap literature that speaks to us of the need of escape. It is true that when we travel we are in search of distance. But distance is not to be found. It melts away. And escape has never led anywhere. The moment a man finds that he must play the races, go the Arctic, or make war in order to feel himself alive, that man has begin to spin the strands that bind him to other men and to the world. But what wretched strands! A civilization that is really strong fills man to the brim, though he never stir. What are we worth when motionless, is the question.

Antoine de Saint-Exupery

Literature is an occupation in which you have to keep proving your talent to people who have none.

Jules Renard

Literature is the thought of thinking Souls.

Thomas Carlyle

Literature is a comprehensive essence of the intellectual life of a nation.

William Shakespeare

Literature is the denunciation of the times in which one lives.

Camilo Jose Cela

It is in literature that the concrete outlook of humanity receives its expression

Alfred North Whitehead

The answers you get from literature depend on the questions you pose

Margaret Atwood

Literature is the orchestration of platitudes.

Thornton Wilder

Great literature is simply language charged with meaning to the utmost possible degree.

Ezra Pound

Literature is the question minus the answer.

Roland Barthes
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