1. 10

    I believe that a work of art, like metaphors in language, can ask the most serious, difficult questions in a way which really makes the readers answer for themselves; that the work of art far more than an essay or a tract involves the reader, challenges him directly and brings him into the argument.

  2. 9

    Nothing is more symptomatic of the enervation, of the decompression of the Western imagination, than our incapacity to respond to the landings on the Moon. Not a single great poem, picture, metaphor has come of this breathtaking act, of Prometheus' rescue of Icarus or of Phaeton in flight towards the stars.

  3. 8

    The most important tribute any human being can pay to a poem or a piece of prose he or she really loves is to learn it by heart. Not by brain, by heart; the expression is vital.

  4. 7

    Books - the best antidote against the marsh-gas of boredom and vacuity

  5. 6

    The intellectual is, quite simply, a human being who has a pencil in his or her hand when reading a book.

  6. 5

    Every language is a world. Without translation, we would inhabit parishes bordering on silence.

  7. 4

    the calling of the teacher. There is no craft more privileged. To awaken in another human being powers, dreams beyond one’s own; to induce in others a love for that which one loves; to make of one’s inward present their future; that is a threefold adventure like no other.

  8. 3

    When a language dies, a way of understanding the world dies with it, a way of looking at the world.

  9. 2

    We know that a man can read Goethe or Rilke in the evening, that he can play Bach and Schubert, and go to his day's work at Auschwitz in the morning.

  10. 1

    To many men... the miasma of peace seems more suffocating than the bracing air of war.

  11. Last Update: 28 September 2022

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