criticism

Criticism quotes
Criticism
A good drama critic is one who perceives what is happening in the theatre of his time. A great drama critic also perceives what is not happening.

- Tynan, Kenneth
The greatest honor that can be paid to the work of art, on its pedestal of ritual display, is to describe it with sensory completeness. We need a science of description. Criticism is ceremonial revivification.

- Paglia, Camille
Critics are already made.

- Byron, Lord
Criticism should be a casual conversation.

- Auden, W. H.
Perfectionism is simply putting a limit on your future. When you have an idea of perfect in your mind, you open the door to constantly comparing what you have now with what you want. That type of self criticism is significantly deterring.

- John Eliot, Ph.D.
Though by whim, envy, or resentment led, they damn those authors whom they never read.

- Churchill, Charles
Good critical writing is measured by the perception and evaluation of the subject; bad critical writing by the necessity of maintaining the professional standing of the critic.

- Chandler, Raymond
No degree of dullness can safeguard a work against the determination of critics to find it fascinating.

- Harold Rosenberg
If what they are saying about you is true, mend your ways. If it isn't true, forget it, and go on and serve the Lord.

- Ironside, H. A.
A good review from the critics is just another stay of execution.

- Hoffman, Dustin
I never met anybody who said when they were a kid, "I wanna grow up and be a critic."

- Richard Pryor
Strike the dog dead, it's but a critic!

- Goethe, Johann Wolfgang Von
A man generally has the good or ill qualities he attributes to mankind.

- Shenstone, William
The aim of all commentary on art now should be to make works of art -- and, by analogy, our own experience -- more, rather than less, real to us. The function of criticism should be to show how it is what it is, even that it is what it is, rather than to show what it means.

- Sontag, Susan
Criticism should not be querulous and wasting, all knife and root-puller, but guiding, instructive, inspiring.

- Emerson, Ralph Waldo
How much easier it is to be critical than to be correct.

- Benjamin Disraeli
You know lots of criticism is written by characters who are very academic and think it is a sign you are worthless if you make jokes or kid or even clown. I wouldn't kid Our Lord if he was on the cross. But I would attempt a joke with him if I ran into him chasing the money changers out of the temple.

- Hemingway, Ernest
All the critics who could not make their reputations by discovering you are hoping to make them by predicting hopefully your approaching impotence, failure and general drying up of natural juices. Not a one will wish you luck or hope that you will keep on writing unless you have political affiliations in which case these will rally around and speak of you and Homer, Balzac, Zola and Link Steffens.

- Hemingway, Ernest
STORY, n. A narrative, commonly untrue. The truth of the stories here following has, however, not been successfully impeached. One evening Mr. Rudolph Block, of New York, found himself seated at dinner alongside Mr. Percival Pollard, the distinguished critic. "Mr. Pollard," said he, "my book, _The Biography of a Dead Cow_, is published anonymously, but you can hardly be ignorant of its authorship. Yet in reviewing it you speak of it as the work of the Idiot of the Century. Do you think that fair criticism?" "I am very sorry, sir," replied the critic, amiably, "but it did not occur to me that you really might not wish the public to know who wrote it." Mr. W.C. Morrow, who used to live in San Jose, California, was addicted to writing ghost stories which made the reader feel as if a stream of lizards, fresh from the ice, were streaking it up his back and hiding in his hair. San Jose was at that time believed to be haunted by the visible spirit of a noted bandit named Vasquez, who had been hanged there. The town was not very well lighted, and it is putting it mildly to say that San Jose was reluctant to be out o'nights. One particularly dark night two gentlemen were abroad in the loneliest spot within the city limits, talking loudly to keep up their courage, when they came upon Mr. J.J. Owen, a well-known journalist. "Why, Owen," said one, "what brings you here on such a night as this? You told me that this is one of Vasquez'favorite haunts! And you are a believer. Aren't you afraid to be out?" "My dear fellow," the journalist replied with a drear autumnal cadence in his speech, like the moan of a leaf-laden wind, "I am afraid to be in. I have one of Will Morrow's stories in my pocket and I don't dare to go where there is light enough to read it." Rear-Admiral Schley and Representative Charles F. Joy were standing near the Peace Monument, in Washington, discussing the question, Is success a failure? Mr. Joy suddenly broke off in the middle of an eloquent sentence, exclaiming: "Hello! I've heard that band before. Santlemann's, I think." "I don't hear any band," said Schley. "Come to think, I don't either," said Joy; "but I see General Miles coming down the avenue, and that pageant always affects me in the same way as a brass band. One has to scrutinize one's impressions pretty closely, or one will mistake their origin." While the Admiral was digesting this hasty meal of philosophy General Miles passed in review, a spectacle of impressive dignity. When the tail of the seeming procession had passed and the two observers had recovered from the transient blindness caused by its effulgence -- "He seems to be enjoying himself," said the Admiral. "There is nothing," assented Joy, thoughtfully, "that he enjoys one-half so well." The illustrious statesman, Champ Clark, once lived about a mile from the village of Jebigue, in Missouri. One day he rode into town on a favorite mule, and, hitching the beast on the sunny side of a street, in front of a saloon, he went inside in his character of teetotaler, to apprise the barkeeper that wine is a mocker. It was a dreadfully hot day. Pretty soon a neighbor came in and seeing Clark, said: "Champ, it is not right to leave that mule out there in the sun. He'll roast, sure! -- he was smoking as I passed him." "O, he's all right," said Clark, lightly; "he's an inveterate smoker." The neighbor took a lemonade, but shook his head and repeated that it was not right. He was a conspirator. There had been a fire the night before: a stable just around the corner had burned and a number of horses had put on their immortality, among them a young colt, which was roasted to a rich nut-brown. Some of the boys had turned Mr. Clark's mule loose and substituted the mortal part of the colt. Presently another man entered the saloon. "For mercy's sake!" he said, taking it with sugar, "do remove that mule, barkeeper: it smells." "Yes," interposed Clark, "that animal has the best nose in Missouri. But if he doesn't mind, you shouldn't." In the course of human events Mr. Clark went out, and there, apparently, lay the incinerated and shrunken remains of his charger. The boys idd not have any fun out of Mr. Clarke, who looked at the body and, with the non-committal expression to which he owes so much of his political preferment, went away. But walking home late that night he saw his mule standing silent and solemn by the wayside in the misty moonlight. Mentioning the name of Helen Blazes with uncommon emphasis, Mr. Clark took the back track as hard as ever he could hook it, and passed the night in town. General H.H. Wotherspoon, president of the Army War College, has a pet rib-nosed baboon, an animal of uncommon intelligence but imperfectly beautiful. Returning to his apartment one evening, the General was surprised and pained to find Adam (for so the creature is named, the general being a Darwinian) sitting up for him and wearing his master's best uniform coat, epaulettes and all. "You confounded remote ancestor!" thundered the great strategist, "what do you mean by being out of bed after naps? -- and with my coat on!" Adam rose and with a reproachful look got down on all fours in the manner of his kind and, scuffling across the room to a table, returned with a visiting-card: General Barry had called and, judging by an empty champagne bottle and several cigar-stumps, had been hospitably entertained while waiting. The general apologized to his faithful progenitor and retired. The next day he met General Barry, who said: "Spoon, old man, when leaving you last evening I forgot to ask you about those excellent cigars. Where did you get them?" General Wotherspoon did not deign to reply, but walked away. "Pardon me, please," said Barry, moving after him; "I was joking of course. Why, I knew it was not you before I had been in the room fifteen minutes."

- Ambrose Bierce
To be just, that is to say, to justify its existence, criticism should be partial, passionate and political, that is to say, written from an exclusive point of view, but a point of view that opens up the widest horizons.

- Charles Pierre Baudelaire



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