Best Quotes about Criticism
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
A wise skepticism is the first attribute of a good critic.
Lowell, James Russell
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.
Abuse if you slight it, will gradually die away; but if you show yourself irritated, you will be thought to have deserved it.
Tacitus, Publius Cornelius
Asking a working writer what he thinks about critics is like asking a lamp-post what it feels about dogs.
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
If all printers were determined not to print anything till they were sure it would offend nobody, there would be very little printed.
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.
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!
Criticism should be a casual conversation.
Auden, W. H.
As much as we thirst for approval we dread condemnation.
All my life people have said that I wasn't going to make it.
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
There has never been a statue erected to honor a critic.
Critics are those who have failed in literature and art.
Remember if people talk behind your back, it only means you're two steps ahead!
The great critic must be a philosopher, for from philosophy he will learn serenity, impartiality, and the transitoriness of human things.
Maugham, W. Somerset
Hardly a book of human worth, be it heaven's own secret, is honestly placed before the reader; it is either shunned, given a Periclean funeral oration in a hundred and fifty words, or interred in the potter's field of the newspapers back pages.
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.
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.
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
No sadder proof can be given of a person's own tiny stature, than their disbelief in great people.
Having a sharp tongue will cut your throat
A negative judgment gives you more satisfaction than praise, provided it smacks of jealousy.
Criticism comes easier than craftsmanship.
The strength of criticism lies in the weakness of the thing criticized.
Longfellow, Henry Wadsworth
I never read a book before reviewing it; it prejudices a man so.
Give a critic an inch, he'll write a play.
Did some more sober critics come abroad? If wrong, I smil'd; if right, I kiss'd the rod.
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.
Critics are already made.
Self-laudation abounds among the unpolished, but nothing can stamp a man more sharply as ill-bred.
Most of us are umpires at heart; we like to call balls and strikes on somebody else.
The pleasure we feel in criticizing robs us from being moved by very beautiful things.
La Bruyere, Jean De
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.
Social criticism begins with grammar and the re-establishing of meanings.
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.
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.
After all, one knows one's weak points so well, that it's rather bewildering to have the critics overlook them and invent others.
There's a fine line between participation and mockery.
A man must serve his time to every trade save censure -- critics all are ready made.
Those who have free seats at a play hiss first.
To avoid criticism, do nothing, say nothing, be nothing.
A critic is a man who knows the way, but can't drive the car.
Nothing is as peevish and pedantic as men's judgments of one another.
For every action, there is an equal and opposite criticism.
When everyone is against you, it means you are absolutely wrong -- or you are absolutely right.
Honest criticism is hard to take, particularly from a relative, a friend, an acquaintance, or a stranger.
Franklin P. Jones
The art of the critic in a nutshell: to coin slogans without betraying ideas. The slogans of an inadequate criticism peddle ideas to fashion.
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.
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