Best Quotes about Criticism
Each generation produces its squad of moderns with peashooters to attack Gibraltar.
I demand that my books be judged with utmost severity, by knowledgeable people who know the rules of grammar and of logic, and who will seek beneath the footsteps of my commas the lice of my thought in the head of my style.
Pay no attention to what the critics say... Remember, a statue has never been set up in honor of a critic!
Without the meditative background that is criticism, works become isolated gestures, historical accidents, soon forgotten.
Do what you feel in your heart to be right. You'll be criticized anyway.
They condemn what they do not understand.
Cicero, Marcus T.
The great critic must be a philosopher, for from philosophy he will learn serenity, impartiality, and the transitoriness of human things.
Maugham, W. Somerset
Criticism, as it was first instituted by Aristotle, was meant as a standard of judging well.
One does not lash hat lies at a distance. The foibles that we ridicule must at least be a little bit our own. Only then will the work be a part of our own flesh. The garden must be weeded.
Give a critic an inch, he'll write a play.
For if there is anything to one's praise, it is foolish vanity to be gratified at it, and if it is abuse -- why one is always sure to hear of it from one damned good-natured friend or another!
Sheridan, Richard Brinsley
Criticism should be a casual conversation.
Auden, W. H.
Writing about music is like dancing about architecture; it's a really stupid thing to want to do.
No sadder proof can be given of a person's own tiny stature, than their disbelief in great people.
Remember if people talk behind your back, it only means you're two steps ahead!
A good review from the critics is just another stay of execution.
The literary critic, or the critic of any other specific form of artistic expression, may detach himself from the world for as long as the work of art he is contemplating appears to do the same.
Many great ideas have been lost because the people who had them could not stand being laughed at.
He who throws dirt always loses ground.
Any jackass can kick a barn down, but it takes a carpenter to build it.
A critic is a reader who ruminates. Thus, he should have more than one stomach.
Unlike other people, our reviewers are powerful because they believe in nothing.
Against criticism a man can neither protest nor defend himself; he must act in spite of it, and then it will gradually yield to him.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
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.
In my conscience I believe the baggage loves me, for she never speaks well of me herself, nor suffers any body else to rail at me.
It is critical vision alone which can mitigate the unimpeded operation of the automatic.
The true critic is he who bears within himself the dreams and ideas and feelings of myriad generations, and to whom no form of thought is alien, no emotional impulse obscure.
Temperament is the primary requisite for the critic -- a temperament exquisitely susceptible to beauty, and to the various impressions that beauty gives us.
A critic is a man who knows the way, but can't drive the car.
I review novels to make money, because it is easier for a sluggard to write an article a fortnight than a book a year, because the writer is soothed by the opiate of action, the crank by posing as a good journalist, and having an air hole. I dislike it. I do it and I am always resolving to give it up.
Unless criticism refuses to take itself quite so seriously or at least to permit its readers not to, it will inevitably continue to reflect the finicky canons of the genteel tradition and the depressing pieties of the Culture Religion of Modernism.
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.
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.
A reader who quarrels with postulates, who dislikes Hamlet because he does not believe that there are ghosts or that people speak in pentameters, clearly has no business in literature. He cannot distinguish fiction from fact, and belongs in the same category as the people who send checks to radio stations for the relief of suffering heroines in soap operas.
If all printers were determined not to print anything till they were sure it would offend nobody, there would be very little printed.
Nature, when she invented, manufactured, and patented her authors, contrived to make critics out of the chips that were left.
Holmes, Oliver Wendell
Strike the dog dead, it's but a critic!
Goethe, Johann Wolfgang Von
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.
God knows people who are paid to have attitudes toward things, professional critics, make me sick; camp following eunuchs of literature. They won't even whore. They're all virtuous and sterile. And how well meaning and high minded. But they're all camp followers.
Even the lion has to defend himself against flies.
Post-modernism has cut off the present from all futures. The daily media add to this by cutting off the past. Which means that critical opinion is often orphaned in the present.
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.
Harsh counsels have no effect; they are like hammers which are always repulsed by the anvil.
Helvetius, Claude A.
Any fool can criticize, condemn, and complain - and most fools do.
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.
To avoid criticism do nothing, say nothing, be nothing.
Criticism is an indirect form of self-boasting.
Fox, Dr. Emmit
Criticism should not be querulous and wasting, all knife and root-puller, but guiding, instructive, inspiring.
Emerson, Ralph Waldo
I never read a book before reviewing it; it prejudices a man so.
Most of us are umpires at heart; we like to call balls and strikes on somebody else.
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