Every single pleasure I can imagine or have experienced is more delightful, more of a pleasure, if you take it in small sips, if you take your time. Reading is not an exception.

— Amos Oz

The most breathtaking Amos Oz quotes that are easy to memorize and remember

Fundamentalist s live life with an exclamation point. I prefer to live my life with a question mark.

41

Writing a poem is like having an affair, a one-night stand;

a short story is a romance, a relationship; a novel is a marriage-one has to be cunning, devise compromises, and make sacrifices.

34

Words create conceptions and self-conceptions and ultimately nations.

They can start and stop wars. They can would and heal. Choosing words carefully is a moral responsibility.

27

A conflict begins and ends in the hearts and minds of people, not in the hilltops.

25

The only way to keep a dream, any dream at all, to keep a dream perfect and rosy and intact and unsullied is never to live it out.

23

Actually, who hasn't been through the ghastly experience of sitting in front of a blank page, with its toothless mouth grinning at you: Go ahead, let's see you lay a finger on me? A blank page is actually a whitewashed wall with no door and no window. Beginning to tell a story is like making a pass at a total stranger in a restaurant.

21

I wrote The Same Sea not as a political allegory about Israelis and Palestinians. I wrote it about something much more gutsy and immediate. I wrote it as a piece of chamber music.

20

The opposite of compromise is not integrity.

The opposite of compromise is not idealism. The opposite of compromise is fanaticism and death.

20

If we don't stop somewhere, if we don't accept an unhappy compromise, unhappy for both sides, if we don't learn how to unhappily coexist and contain our burned sense of injustice - if we don't learn how to do that, we end up in a doomed state.

18

Democracy in many parts of the world is undergoing a very deep crisis.

Politics is becoming a branch of the entertainment industry. People vote not for the best leader, but for the funniest candidate.

17

One of the things I wanted to introduce in The Same Sea beyond transcending the conflict, is the fact that deep down below all our secrets are the same.

14

I find the family the most mysterious and fascinating institution in the world.

13

About Amos Oz

Quotes 158 sayings
Nationality Israeli
Profession Writer
Birthday October 16

This bloody conflict has been going on for much too long.

It is doing terrible things to Israelis, to Palestinians. One of the terrible things it is causing is indifference.

11

It is crystal clear to me that if Arabs put down a draft resolution blaming Israel for the recent earthquake in Iran it would probably have a majority, the U.S. would veto it and Britain and France would abstain.

9

I have seen for the first time in 100 years of conflict, the two peoples - the Israeli people and the Palestinian people - are ahead of their leaderships.

8

Literature may open a third eye in the middle of the reader's forehead.

8

I wrote a novel about Israelis who live their own lives on the slope of a volcano. Near a volcano one still falls in love, one still gets jealous, one still wants a promotion, one still gossips.

8

Every decent man had to be against fascism, period.

7

Well, my definition of a tragedy is a clash between right and right.

7

Think about Elizabethan English, where the entire English language behaved pretty much like molten lava, like a volcano in mid-eruption. Modern Hebrew has some things in common with Elizabethan English. It is being reshaped and it's expanding very rapidly in various directions.

6

In many ways, I regard Sharon and Arafat as birds of a feather.

5

Compromise is not popular. It's not at all popular among young people who these days call themselves "activists." They think compromises are dishonest, opportunistic, humiliating. Not in my vocabulary.

5

Israel of the coastal plain, where eight out of ten Israeli Jews live far removed from the occupied territories, from the fiery Jerusalem, from the religious and nationalistic conflicts, is unknown to the outside world, almost unknown to itself.

5

But for 30 years, Orthodox leaders have tipped the balance between hawks and doves, and have been in a position to determine who forms a coalition and who runs the country.

5

The alternative to fanaticism and to death is not some miraculous realization that someone has been wrong and he has to apologize. No, the answer to fanaticism and to death is curiosity and compromise and concession.

5

Literature may make the reader reexamine some of his or her own conventions, look at himself or herself in a different way, look at others in a different way. This goes way beyond just making statements or manifesting principles.

4

She had not wanted him to but had let him have his way because ever since she was a child she had generally yielded before anyone with strong willpower, especially if it was a man, not because she was naturally submissive, but because strong male willpower gave her a feeling of safety and trust, together with acceptance and a desire to give in.

4

In writing a novel, the writer must be able to identify emotionally and intellectually with two or three or four contradicting perspectives and give each of them very a convincing voice. It's like playing tennis with yourself and you have to be on both sides of the yard. You have to be on both sides, or all sides if there are more than two sides.

4

I recommend the art of slow reading.

3

I was born and bred in a tiny, low-ceilinged ground-floor apartment.

3

I'm a great believer in compromises. I do not believe in capitulation.

3

The gift of literature is that, in some lucky cases, reading a novel or a story makes the reader more curious, more open-minded.

3

If you change your diet, someone will call you a traitor.

3

Over 70 years after Hitler, a German chancellor, a woman, is the leader of the free world. So don't talk to me about irrevocable.

3

I don't believe in binational states.

There are wonderful examples of this, prosperous multinational states: Switzerland, Switzerland and Switzerland. Everywhere else - be it Cyprus, Yugoslavia or the Soviet Union, it ended in a terrible bloodbath.

3

I am an old man and I have seen things get revoked. Things which looked very irrevocable.

2

I would love to leave my children and grandchildren a nicer world than the one I am going to leave them. But bearing in mind that I was born in the world of Hitler, Mussolini and Franco, the legacy I leave them might not be as terrible as the legacy my parents and grandparents left to me.

2

The Old Testament is full of poetry, prophecies, chronicles, documentations, storytelling, fairytales.

2

The morning I woke up and it was announced that Trump was the elected president of the United States, I wrote to Angela Merkel. I said that she - at least for me - is now the leader of the free world.

2

Different musical instruments provide for different music.

1

Literature belongs first and foremost to the language in which it is being written. The very same book, even if it is translated very accurately, let's say from Hebrew into English or from English into Hebrew, becomes a different book because language is a musical instrument.

1

We have to carry through to the next day and hope that we will be okay tomorrow as we are today and in the meantime, enjoy life.

1

My musical instrument is Hebrew and, to me, this is the most important fact about my writing.

0

I'm not sure I'm happy with words such as "task" or "role" when they are attached to literature.

0

Universally, not only in Israel, people want to feel good about themselves.

We all want to feel good to some extent.

0

Everybody comes from somewhere.

0

When I was little, my ambition was to grow up to be a book.

Not a writer. People can be killed like ants. Writers are not hard to kill either. But not books: however systematically you try to destroy them, there is always a chance that a copy will survive and continue to enjoy a shelf-life in some corner on an out-of-the-way library somehwere in Reykjavik, Valladolid or Vancouver.

0

Literature is about telling stories.

0

Almost without exception, my novels are rooted in Israel because that's the place I know well.

0
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