The Brilliance Of Baldwin: Some of my Favorite Quotes. Add Your Own!

 

Happy Birthday James Baldwin!  

In celebration of one of my Favorite Leo’s, I thought I’d take the time to post some of my favorite quotes from this brilliant spirit.

Check them out, and please post your own favorites in the comments section!

Happy Birthday James!

 

Quotes:

“Love takes off masks that we fear we cannot live without and know we cannot live  within.”

“I am what time, circumstance, history, have made of me, certainly, but I am also, much more than that. So are we all.” 

“I imagine one of the reasons people cling to their hates so stubbornly is because they sense, once hate is gone, they will be forced to deal with their pain. “

“People who treat other people as less than human must not be surprised when the bread they have cast on the waters comes floating back to them, poisoned.”

“Everybody’s journey is individual. If you fall in love with a boy, you fall in love with a boy. The fact that many Americans consider it a disease says more about them than it does about homosexuality. “

” There are so many ways of being despicable it quite makes one’s head spin. But the way to be really despicable is to be contemptuous of other people’s pain.”

 

“Every legend, moreover, contains its residuum of truth, and the root function of language is to control the universe by describing it.”

 

“Anyone who has ever struggled with poverty knows how extremely expensive it is to be poor.” 

 

“It was books that taught me that the things that tormented me most were the very things that connected me with all the people who were alive, or who had ever been alive.”

 

“It is certain, in any case, that ignorance, allied with power, is the most ferocious enemy justice can have.” 


 

“People pay for what they do, and still more for what they have allowed themselves to become. And they pay for it very simply; by the lives they lead. “

 

“You know, it’s not the world that was my oppressor, because what the world does to you, if the world does it to you long enough and effectively enough, you begin to do to yourself.”


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5 Comments

  1. I love this quote from THE FIRE NEXT TIME:

    “One must say Yes to life, and embrace it wherever it is found – and it is found in terrible places… For nothing is fixed, forever and forever, it is not fixed; the earth is always shifting, the light is always changing, the sea does not cease to grind down rock. Generations do not cease to be born, and we are responsible to them because we are the only witnesses they have. The sea rises, the light fails, lovers cling to each other, and children cling to us. The moment we cease to hold each other, the moment we break faith with one another, the sea engulfs us and the light goes out.”

  2. “There is something terribly radical about believing that one’s own experience and images are important enough to speak about, much less to write about and to perform “

  3. All art is a kind of confession, more or less oblique. All artists, if they are to survive, are forced, at last, to tell the whole story; to vomit the anguish up.
    -James Baldwin

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