Best Quotes about Criticism
No sadder proof can be given of a person's own tiny stature, than their disbelief in great people.
Many great ideas have been lost because the people who had them could not stand being laughed at.
What the public criticizes in you, cultivate. It is you.
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
A drama critic is a person who surprises the playwright by informing him what he meant.
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
The rule in carving holds good as to criticism; never cut with a knife what you can cut with a spoon.
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.
It is very perplexing how an intrepid frontier people, who fought a wilderness, floods, tornadoes, and the Rockies, cower before criticism, which is regarded as a malignant tumor in the imagination.
People who ask for your criticism want only praise.
Maugham, W. Somerset
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!
Take heed of critics even when they are not fair; resist them even when they are.
Let me walk three weeks in the footsteps of my enemy, carry the same burden, have the same trials as he, before I say one word to criticize.
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.
No man ever got very high by pulling other people down. The intelligent merchant does not knock his competitors. The sensible worker does not work those who work with him. Don't knock your friends. Don't knock your enemies. Don't knock yourself.
Tennyson, Lord Alfred
What we ask of him is, that he should find out for us more than we can find out for ourselves. He must have the passion of a lover.
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
Most critical writing is drivel and half of it is dishonest. It is a short cut to oblivion, anyway. Thinking in terms of ideas destroys the power to think in terms of emotions and sensations.
Satire is often the reflection of a kind of moral nausea.
He who throws dirt always loses ground.
Criticism comes easier than craftsmanship.
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.
Art is not the application of a canon of beauty but what the instinct and the brain can conceive beyond any canon. When we love a woman we don't start measuring her limbs.
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.
The author himself is the best judge of his own performance; none has so deeply meditated on the subject; none is so sincerely interested in the event.
Criticism, that fine flower of personal expression in the garden of letters.
If you must speak ill of another, do not speak it, write it in the sand near the water's edge
Any jackass can kick a barn down, but it takes a carpenter to build it.
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.
No degree of dullness can safeguard a work against the determination of critics to find it fascinating.
One ought to examine himself for a very long time before thinking of condemning others.
Any fool can criticize, condemn, and complain - and most fools do.
There's a fine line between participation and mockery.
Honest criticism means nothing: what one wants is unrestrained passion, fire for fire.
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.
We should not judge people by their peak of excellence; but by the distance they have traveled from the point where they started.
Beecher, Henry Ward
Any authentic work of art must start an argument between the artist and his audience.
Some people are always critical of vague statements. I tend rather to be critical of precise statements; they are the only ones which can correctly be labeled wrong.
The strength of criticism lies in the weakness of the thing criticized.
Longfellow, Henry Wadsworth
Social criticism begins with grammar and the re-establishing of meanings.
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
If evil be spoken of you and it be true, correct yourself, if it be a lie, laugh at it.
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.
Interpretation is the revenge of the intellect upon art. Even more. It is the revenge of the intellect upon the world. To interpret is to impoverish, to deplete the world -- in order to set up a shadow world of meanings.
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
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.
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.
Temperament is the primary requisite for the critic -- a temperament exquisitely susceptible to beauty, and to the various impressions that beauty gives us.
Asking a working writer what he thinks about critics is like asking a lamp-post what it feels about dogs.
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