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Anatole Broyard Quotes

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"The tension between "yes" and "no," between "I can" and "I cannot," makes us feel that, in so many instances, human life is an interminable debate with one's self."

"Rome was a poem pressed into service as a city."

"The first divorce in the world may have been a tragedy, but the hundred-millionth is not necessarily one."

"When friends stop being frank and useful to each other, the whole world loses some of its radiance."

"It is one of the paradoxes of American literature that our writers are forever looking back with love and nostalgia at lives they couldn't wait to leave."

"The midnight snack of a life in its 70s."

"The epic implications of being human end in more than this: We start our lives as if they were momentous stories, with a beginning, a middle and an appropriate end, only to find that they are mostly middles."

"His father, Vincent, took him to La Coupole in Paris and, after sitting on the terrace for a while, walked off and forgot him. It was the perfect start in life for a writer."

"She was a spendthrift of the spirit, an American in Paris when, as Evelyn Waugh said, the going was good."

"Lapped in poetry, wrapped in the picturesque, armed with logical sentences and inalienable words."

"A whole generation of writers dined out on the dialectic between original cultures and their culture by "progress." They became traveling salesmen of metaphors."

"Aphorisms are bad for novels. They stick in the reader's teeth."

"To be misunderstood can be the writer's punishment for having disturbed the reader's peace. The greater the disturbance, the greater the possibility of misunderstanding."

"If a book is really good, it deserves to be read again, and if it's great, it should be read at least three times."

"The more I like a book, the more reluctant I am to turn the page. Lovers, even book lovers, tend to cling. No one-night stands or "reads" for them."

"There is something about seeing real people on a stage that makes a bad play more intimately, more personally offensive than any other art form."

"Ruefulness is one of the classical tones of American fiction. It fosters a native, deglamorized form of anxiety."

"The more I like a book, the more slowly I read. this spontaneous talking back to a book is one of the things that makes reading so valuable."

"People have no idea what a hard job it is for two writers to be friends. Sooner or later you have to talk about each other's work."

"There was a time when we expected nothing of our children but obedience, as opposed to the present, when we expect everything of them but obedience."

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