Jonathan Raban was a British author, who wrote extensively about travel and the human condition. He was known for his vivid prose, which was often praised for its insight and vividness. He was the author of many books, including Old Glory, Passage to Juneau, and Soft City.
What is the most famous quote by Jonathan Raban ?
Life, as the most ancient of all metaphors insists, is a journey; and the travel book, in its deceptive simulation of the journey's fits and starts, rehearses life's own fragmentation. More even than the novel, it embraces the contingency of things.— Jonathan Raban
What can you learn from Jonathan Raban (Life Lessons)
- Jonathan Raban encourages readers to embrace life's uncertainties and take risks, as he believes that it is only through taking risks that we can truly experience life.
- He also stresses the importance of self-reflection and understanding one's own motivations and desires in order to make meaningful decisions.
- Finally, he encourages readers to be open to new experiences and to embrace the unknown, as it is only through these experiences that we can truly learn and grow.
The most killer Jonathan Raban quotes that will activate your desire to change
Following is a list of the best Jonathan Raban quotes, including various Jonathan Raban inspirational quotes, and other famous sayings by Jonathan Raban.
There's an enduring American compulsion to be on the side of the angels.
Expediency alone has never been an adequate American reason for doing anything. When actions are judged, they go before the bar of God, where Mom and the Flag closely flank His presence.
Over emphatic negatives always suggest that what is being denied may be what is really being asserted.
We need more urgently than architectural utopias, ingenious traffic disposal systems, or ecological programmes to comprehend the nature of citizenship, to make serious imaginative assessment of that special relationship between the self and the city; its unique plasticity, its privacy and freedom.
The Falklands held a mirror up to our own islands, and it reflected, in brilliantly sharp focus, all our injured belittlement, our sense of being beleaguered, neglected and misunderstood.
Seattle is not an overly friendly city.
It is a civil city, but not altogether friendly. People from outside mistake the civility for friendliness. Seattle is full of people who have their own lives to live. They won't waste their time being friendly. But they are civil.
Seattle was built out on pilings over the sea, and at high tide the whole city seemed to come afloat like a ship lifting free from a mud berth and swaying in its chains.
The mythical America?that marvellous, heroic, sentimental landwas an object of faith. It challenged you to make the believer's leap over the rude facts at your feet.
Interstate highways dull the reality of place and distance almost as effectively as jetliners do: I loathe their scary monotony.
Travel quotes by Jonathan Raban
In an underdeveloped country don't drink the water. In a developed country don't breathe the air.
In novels and autobiographies, the first positive move that the immigrant makes towards assimilation is to buy himself a suit of city clothes.
Good travel books are novels at heart.
It always seems to me odd to call a place a wilderness when every wilderness area in the US bristles with rules and regulations as to how you can behave, what you're allowed to do, and is patrolled by armed rangers enforcing the small print. They're parks, of course, not wildernesses at all.
One classic American landscape haunts all of American literature.
It is a picture of Eden, perceived at the instant of history when corruption has just begun to set it. The serpent has shown his scaly head in the undergrowth. The apple gleams on the tree. The old drama of the Fall is ready to start all over again.
Every White House has had its intellectuals, but very few presidents have been intellectuals themselves - Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Woodrow Wilson, the list more or less stops there.
Critics? Don't talk to me of critics! You think some jackanapes journalist, his soul eaten away by the maggots of jealousy and failure, has anything worthwhile to say of art? I don't.
'Rage' is the word that most often attaches itself to the Tea Party movement, and it's true that, from the outside looking in, their public demonstrations appear to be more enraged than any political events in America since the race riots and anti-war protests of the 1960s.
Quotations by Jonathan Raban that are history and satire
Sociology and anthropology are not disciplines which take easily to situations where people are able to live out their fantasies, not just in the symbolic action of ritual, but in the concrete theater of society at large.
In rural areas the majority of the victims of violent crime know their assailants (indeed, are probably married to them); in cities, the killer and the mugger come out of the anonymous dark, their faces unrecognized, their motives obscure.
I've taught the better class of tourist both to see and not to see;
to lift their eyes above and beyond the inessentials, and thrill to our western Nature in her majesty.
'Dreams From My Father' reveals more about Obama than is usually known about political leaders until after they're dead. Perhaps more than it intends, it shows his mind working, in real time, sentence by sentence, in what feels like a private audience with the reader.
Living in cities is an art, and we need the vocabulary of art, of style, to describe the peculiar relationship between man and material that exists in the continual creative play of urban living. The city as we imagine it, then, soft city of illusion, myth, aspiration, and nightmare, is as real, maybe more real, than the hard city one can locate on maps in statistics, in monographs on urban sociology and demography and architecture.
To the newcomer who has not learned its language, a large city is a chaos of details, a vast Woolworths store of differently colored, simlarly priced objects.
All this piling up of one technology on top of another-railroad on steamboat, interstate highway on railroad, hydroelectric dam on watermill-had reduced the Mississippi from a wonder of nature to this sluggish canal on the wrong side of the tracks.
Seattle is a liberal city, its politics not so much blue in the American, not the British, sense as deep ultramarine, and its manners are studiously polite.
Books admitted me to their world open-handedly, as people for their most part, did not. The life I lived in books was one of ease and freedom, worldly wisdom, glitter, dash and style.
Trouble defies the law of gravity. It's easier to pick up than to drop.
Inaugurals conventionally start with a history lesson and finish with a prayer.
My new city [Seattle] and its hinterland felt deceptively homely.
Their similar latitude gave them the angular light and lingering evenings I was used to. Their damp marine weather, blowing in from the southwest, came in the right direction. When the mountains are hidden under a low sky, one might almost imagine oneself to be in Britain.
Travel. It was an intransitive verb. It didn't involve any destinations. It was going to the going's sake, to be anywhere but where you were, with motion itself as the only object.
Because Washington state now votes by mail, elections here tend to play out, at an agonizingly slow speed, over many days and, sometimes, weeks.
Democrats inhabit the low shores of Puget Sound, mostly on its eastern side, in a ragged trail of port-cities that stretches from Bellingham, close to the Canadian border, through Everett, Seattle, and Tacoma, to Olympia, the state capital, at the southern end of the sound.
It's been so long since a talented writer last occupied the White House;
no wonder, then, that American writers have been among the most prominent of all the demographic groups claiming a piece of Barack Obama for themselves.
When New Yorkers tell one about the dangers of their city, the muggings, the dinner parties to which no one turns up for fear of being attacked on the way, the traffic snarl-ups, the bland indifference of the city cops, they are unmistakably bragging.
The only real river I knew was hardly more than a brook.
It spilled through a tumbledown mill at the bottom of our road, opened into a little trouty pool, then ran on through water meadows over graveled shallows into Fakenham [England], where it slowed and deepened, gathering strength for the long drifts across muddy flatlands to Norwich and the North Sea.
The north-south line of 'the mountains,' meaning the Cascade Range, forty miles east of Seattle, is a rigid political frontier.
Spells of acute loneliness are an essential part of travel. Loneliness makes things happen.
By the end of the 1980s, Seattle had taken on the dangerous lustre of a promised city. The rumour had gone out that if you had failed in Detroit you might yet succeed in Seattle - and that if you'd succeeded in Seoul, you could succeed even better in Seattle... Seattle was the coming place. So I joined the line of hopefuls.
At night, what you see is a city, because all you see is lights. By day, it doesn't look like a city at all. The trees out-number the houses. And that's completely typical of Seattle. You can't quite tell: is it a city, is it a suburb, is the forest growing back?
No president has come near to rivaling Lincoln as a writer.
The [travel] writer, looking back at the journey from a distance of a year or two (or three), is a different character from the hapless character who undertook the trip: wise after the event, with the leisure to tease out meanings from the experience that the distracted traveler never had, and often impatient with his alter ego's blinkered and unsatisfactory version of things.
I ain't sleeping. I'm just taking a good look at the insides of my eyelids.
Simply as a writer of books I'm thrilled and proud that Seattle should have raised, on a public vote, sufficient money to build a central library, and moreover to rebuild every other library in the city: 28 of them.
Seattle is this curious liberal island.
The only book by a modern president that bears serious comparison with Obama's 'Dreams From My Father' is Jimmy Carter's short campaign autobiography, 'Why Not the Best?,' published in 1975.
I loved the audacity of that American principle which says. When life gets tainted or goes stale, junk it! Leave it behind! Go West!
If we live inside a bad joke, it is up to us to learn, at best and worst, to tell it well.
Lincoln, steeped in the Bible and Shakespeare, set an impossibly high bar for presidential prose.
The city has always been an embodiment of hope and a source of feeling guilt; a dream pursued, and found vain, wanting, and destructive.
When traveling, I usually keep a notebook: when home at my desk, the notebook serves mainly to remind me how little I saw at the time, or rather how I was noticing the wrong things. But the notes do spur memories, and it's the memories I trust. The wine stain on the page may tell me more than the words there, which usually strike me as hopelessly inadequate.