Best Quotes about Criticism
When everyone is against you, it means you are absolutely wrong -- or you are absolutely right.
There is an air of last things, a brooding sense of impending annihilation, about so much deconstructive activity, in so many of its guises; it is not merely postmodernist but preapocalyptic.
Reviewers, with some rare exceptions, are a most stupid and malignant race. As a bankrupt thief turns thief-taker in despair, so an unsuccessful author turns critic.
Shelley, Percy Bysshe
They condemn what they do not understand.
Cicero, Marcus T.
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
As much as we thirst for approval we dread condemnation.
You should not say it is not good. You should say you do not like it; and then, you know, you're perfectly safe.
Whistler, James Mcneill
Criticism, as it was first instituted by Aristotle, was meant as a standard of judging well.
The avocation of assessing the failures of better men can be turned into a comfortable livelihood, providing you back it up with a Ph.D.
He who throws dirt always loses ground.
I never met anybody who said when they were a kid, "I wanna grow up and be a critic."
It is just as hard to do your duty when men are sneering at you as when they are shouting at you.
Wilson, Woodrow T.
For every action, there is an equal and opposite criticism.
In an age of unscrupulous and shameless book-making, it is a duty to give notice of the rubbish that cumbers the ground. There is no credit, no real power required for this task. It is the work of an intellectual scavenger, and far from being specially honorable.
Hutton, R. H.
Honest criticism is hard to take, especially from a relative, a friend, an acquaintance, or a stranger.
Jones, Franklin P.
Their is no defense against criticism except obscurity.
On an occasion of this kind it becomes more than a moral duty to speak one's mind. It becomes a pleasure.
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.
There is then creative reading as well as creative writing. When the mind is braced by labor and invention, the page of whatever book we read becomes luminous with manifold allusion. Every sentence is doubly significant, and the sense of our author is as broad as the world.
Emerson, Ralph Waldo
Without the meditative background that is criticism, works become isolated gestures, historical accidents, soon forgotten.
Men over forty are no judges of a book written in a new spirit.
Emerson, Ralph Waldo
The strength of criticism lies in the weakness of the thing criticized.
Longfellow, Henry Wadsworth
Criticism is a misconception: we must read not to understand others but to understand ourselves.
Cioran, E. M.
Blame is safer than praise.
Emerson, Ralph Waldo
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.
A sneer is the weapon of the weak.
Lowell, James Russell
Social criticism begins with grammar and the re-establishing of meanings.
Prolonged, indiscriminate reviewing of books is a quite exceptionally thankless, irritating and exhausting job. It not only involves praising trash but constantly inventing reactions towards books about which one has no spontaneous feeling whatever.
To criticize is to appreciate, to appropriate, to take intellectual possession, to establish in fine a relation with the criticized thing and to make it one's own.
Doubtless criticism was originally benignant, pointing out the beauties of a work rather that its defects. The passions of men have made it malignant, as a bad heart of Procreates turned the bed, the symbol of repose, into an instrument of torture.
Longfellow, Henry Wadsworth
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.
Of course you're always at liberty to judge the critic. Judge people as critics, however, and you'll condemn them all!
In judging others, folks will work overtime for no pay.
Carruthers, Charles Edwin
A film is just like a muffin. You make it. You put it on the table. One person might say, Oh, I don't like it. One might say it's the best muffin ever made. One might say it's an awful muffin. It's hard for me to say. It's for me to make the muffin.
A bad review is even less important than whether it is raining in Patagonia.
One cannot review a bad book without showing off.
W. H. Auden
Writing prejudicial, off-putting reviews is a precise exercise in applied black magic. The reviewer can draw free-floating disagreeable associations to a book by implying that the book is completely unimportant without saying exactly why, and carefully avoiding any clear images that could capture the reader's full attention.
Burroughs, William S.
Never make the mistake of assuming the critters will beat a path to your door.
Mascotte, John P.
Nothing would improve newspaper criticism so much as the knowledge that it was to be read by men too hardy to acquiesce in the authoritative statement of the reviewer.
Hutton, R. H.
Criticism of others is futile and if you indulge in it often you should be warned that it can be fatal to your career.
Criticism is a study by which men grow important and formidable at very small expense. He whom nature has made weak, and idleness keeps ignorant, may yet support his vanity by the name of a critic.
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.
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.
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!
If evil be spoken of you and it be true, correct yourself, if it be a lie, laugh at it.
To avoid criticism, do nothing, say nothing, be nothing.
Critics are already made.
Much literary criticism comes from people for whom extreme specialization is a cover for either grave cerebral inadequacy or terminal laziness, the latter being a much cherished aspect of academic freedom.
Galbraith, John Kenneth
Criticism is prejudice made plausible.
H. L. Mencken
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