Best Quotes about Criticism
Most of our censure of others is only oblique praise of self, uttered to show the wisdom and superiority of the speaker. It has all the invidiousness of self-praise, and all the ill-desert of falsehood.
A man must serve his time to every trade save censure -- critics all are ready made.
Critics are already made.
Let me tell you something that we Israelis have against Moses. He took us 40 years through the desert in order to bring us to the one spot in the Middle East that has no oil!
The rule in carving holds good as to criticism; never cut with a knife what you can cut with a spoon.
Any reviewer who expresses rage and loathing for a novel is preposterous. He or she is like a person who has put on full armor and attacked a hot fudge sundae.
To avoid criticism do nothing, say nothing, be nothing.
Any fool can criticize, condemn, and complain - and most fools do.
No matter how well you perform there's always somebody of intelligent opinion who thinks it's lousy.
Olivier, Sir Lawrence
The easiest thing a human being can do is to criticize another human being.
Little, Lynn M.
No sadder proof can be given of a person's own tiny stature, than their disbelief in great people.
Nothing is as peevish and pedantic as men's judgments of one another.
Be swift to hear, slow to speak, and slow to wrath.
Do what you feel in your heart to be right - for you'll be criticized anyway. You'll be damned if you do, and damned if you don't.
No degree of dullness can safeguard a work against the determination of critics to find it fascinating.
The great critic must be a philosopher, for from philosophy he will learn serenity, impartiality, and the transitoriness of human things.
Maugham, W. Somerset
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.
I consider criticism merely a preliminary excitement, a statement of things a writer has to clear up in his own head sometime or other, probably antecedent to writing; of no value unless it come to fruit in the created work later.
You should never assume contempt for that which it is not very manifest that you have it in your power to possess, nor does a wit ever make a more contemptible figure than when, in attempting satire, he shows that he does not understand that which he would make the subject of his ridicule.
Never criticize a man until you've walked a mile in his moccasins.
Native American Proverb
We have our little theory on all human and divine things. Poetry, the workings of genius itself, which, in all times, with one or another meaning, has been called Inspiration, and held to be mysterious and inscrutable, is no longer without its scientific exposition. The building of the lofty rhyme is like any other masonry or bricklaying: we have theories of its rise, height, decline and fall -- which latter, it would seem, is now near, among all people.
The art of the critic in a nutshell: to coin slogans without betraying ideas. The slogans of an inadequate criticism peddle ideas to fashion.
Any critic is entitled to wrong judgments, of course. But certain lapses of judgment indicate the radical failure of an entire sensibility.
Every writer is necessarily a critic -- that is, each sentence is a skeleton accompanied by enormous activity of rejection; and each selection is governed by general principles concerning truth, force, beauty, and so on. The critic that is in every fabulist is like the iceberg -- nine-tenths of him is under water.
A friend is a lot of things, but a critic isn't.
Criticism should be a casual conversation.
Auden, W. H.
Before you criticize a man, walk a mile in his shoes. That way, when you do criticize him, you'll be a mile away and have his shoes.
Writing criticism is to writing fiction and poetry as hugging the shore is to sailing in the open sea.
In reality, the world have paid too great a compliment to critics, and have imagined them men of much greater profundity than they really are.
We might remind ourselves that criticism is as inevitable as breathing, and that we should be none the worse for articulating what passes in our minds when we read a book and feel an emotion about it, for criticizing our own minds in their work of criticism.
Eliot, T. S.
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.
If the end brings me out all right, what is said against me won't amount to anything. If the end brings me out wrong, then ten angels swearing I was right would make no difference.
Those who have free seats at a play hiss first.
For every action, there is an equal and opposite criticism.
David Lynch came out of it a genius, and I came out of it a fat girl. I'm sorry that the only comment I get about the part is the way I look. [Commenting on the critics' response to her performance in Blue Velvet]
It is from the womb of art that criticism was born.
A sneer is the weapon of the weak.
Lowell, James Russell
Nature, when she invented, manufactured, and patented her authors, contrived to make critics out of the chips that were left.
Holmes, Oliver Wendell
A negative judgment gives you more satisfaction than praise, provided it smacks of jealousy.
Professional critics are incapable of distinguishing and appreciating either diamonds in the rough or gold in bars. They are traders, and in literature know only the coins that are current. Their critical lab has scales and weights, but neither crucible or touchstone.
Neither praise or blame is the object of true criticism. Justly to discriminate, firmly to establish, wisely to prescribe, and honestly to award. These are the true aims and duties of criticism.
Simms, William Gilmore
The critical opinions of a writer should always be taken with a large grain of salt. For the most part, they are manifestations of his debate with himself as to what he should do next and what he should avoid.
Auden, W. H.
The dread of criticism is the death of genius.
Simms, William Gilmore
I am sorry to think that you do not get a man's most effective criticism until you provoke him. Severe truth is expressed with some bitterness.
Thoreau, Henry David
Though by whim, envy, or resentment led, they damn those authors whom they never read.
A critic is a man who knows the way, but can't drive the car.
Asking a working writer what he thinks about critics is like asking a lamppost how it feels about dogs.
Never retract, never explain, never apologize; get things done and let them howl.
Praise those of your critics for whom nothing is up to standard.
The biggest critics of my books are people who never read them.
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