Best Quotes about Criticism
There are two modes of criticism. One which crushes to earth without mercy all the humble buds of Phantasy, all the plants that, though green and fruitful, are also a prey to insects or have suffered by drought. It weeds well the garden, and cannot believe the weed in its native soil may be a pretty, graceful plant. There is another mode which enters into the natural history of every thing that breathes and lives, which believes no impulse to be entirely in vain, which scrutinizes circumstances, motive and object before it condemns, and believes there is a beauty in natural form, if its law and purpose be understood.
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.
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!
They will say you are on the wrong road, if it is your own.
In the arts, the critic is the only independent source of information. The rest is advertising.
We have been educated to such a fine -- or dull -- point that we are incapable of enjoying something new, something different, until we are first told what it's all about. We don't trust our five senses; we rely on our critics and educators, all of whom are failures in the realm of creation. In short, the blind lead the blind. It's the democratic way.
It is critical vision alone which can mitigate the unimpeded operation of the automatic.
It is from the womb of art that criticism was born.
No degree of dullness can safeguard a work against the determination of critics to find it fascinating.
Satire is often the reflection of a kind of moral nausea.
It is healthier, in any case, to write for the adults one's children will become than for the children one's mature critics often are.
It is wrong to be harsh with the New York critics, unless one admits in the same breath that it is a condition of their existence that they should write entertainingly about something which is rarely worth writing about at all.
Not even the most powerful organs of the press, including Time, Newsweek, and The New York Times, can discover a new artist or certify his work and make it stick. They can only bring you the scores.
Praise or blame has but a momentary effect on the man whose love of beauty in the abstract makes him a severe critic on his own works.
The person of analytic or critical intellect finds something ridiculous in everything. The person of synthetic or constructive intellect, in almost nothing.
Goethe, Johann Wolfgang Von
If evil be spoken of you and it be true, correct yourself, if it be a lie, laugh at it.
Let us consider the critic, therefore, as a discoverer of discoveries.
Asking a working writer what he thinks about critics is like asking a lamp-post what it feels about dogs.
Culture is only true when implicitly critical, and the mind which forgets this revenges itself in the critics it breeds. Criticism is an indispensable element of culture.
Adorno, Theodor W.
Unlike other people, our reviewers are powerful because they believe in nothing.
When I am abroad, I always make it a rule to never criticize or attack the government of my own country. I make up for lost time when I come home.
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.
On an occasion of this kind it becomes more than a moral duty to speak one's mind. It becomes a pleasure.
The text is merely one of the contexts of a piece of literature, its lexical or verbal one, no more or less important than the sociological, psychological, historical, anthropological or generic.
Unless a reviewer has the courage to give you unqualified praise, I say ignore the bastard.
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
Praise those of your critics for whom nothing is up to standard.
Critics are already made.
Critics are those who have failed in literature and art.
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
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.
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.
Never trust the artist. Trust the tale. The proper function of a critic is to save the tale from the artist who created it.
Lawrence, D. H.
Men over forty are no judges of a book written in a new spirit.
Emerson, Ralph Waldo
Reviewers are usually people who would have been, poets, historians, biographer, if they could. They have tried their talents at one thing or another and have failed; therefore they turn critic.
Coleridge, Samuel Taylor
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.
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.
I never read a book before reviewing it; it prejudices a man so.
The biggest critics of my books are people who never read them.
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.
If I make a move, like raise my eyebrows, some critic says I'm doing Nicholson. What am I supposed to do, cut off my eyebrows?
What the public criticizes in you, cultivate. It is you.
All the world's a stage, and all the clergymen critics.
A critic is a man who knows the way, but can't drive the car.
Never make the mistake of assuming the critters will beat a path to your door.
Mascotte, John P.
Asking a working writer what he thinks about critics is like asking a lamppost how it feels about dogs.
Temperament is the primary requisite for the critic -- a temperament exquisitely susceptible to beauty, and to the various impressions that beauty gives us.
A drama critic is a person who surprises the playwright by informing him what he meant.
I remember when I was in college, people told me I couldn't play in the NBA. There's always somebody saying you can't do it, and those people have to be ignored.
Many great ideas have been lost because the people who had them could not stand being laughed at.
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