Zitate von Arthur Miller

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Arthur Miller

Geburtstag: 17. Oktober 1915
Todesdatum: 10. Februar 2005

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Arthur Asher Miller war ein amerikanischer Schriftsteller. Arthur Miller gilt als wichtiger gesellschaftskritischer Dramatiker der neueren Zeit. Seine sozial- und zeitkritischen Dramen wenden sich gegen den so genannten American Way of Life, bei dem der berufliche Erfolg im Mittelpunkt steht. Immer wieder stellte Miller die ethische Verpflichtung des Einzelnen in den Vordergrund.

Zitate Arthur Miller

„Das Leben ist ein Kampf. Und solange du kämpfst, bist du nicht tot. Die Toten haben keine Kämpfe mehr.“

— Arthur Miller
im Interview mit Matthias Matussek. Der Spiegel Nr. 52/1992 vom 21. Dezember 1992

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„Don't be seduced into thinking that that which does not make a profit is without value.“

— Arthur Miller
As quoted in Finding Your Bipolar Muse : How to Master Depressive Droughts and Manic Depression (2006) by Lana R. Castle, p. 258

„The concentration camp is the final expression of human separateness and its ultimate consequence. It is organized abandonment.“

— Arthur Miller
Context: If you complain of people being shot down in the streets, of the absence of communication or social responsibility, of the rise of everyday violence which people have become accustomed to, and the dehumanization of feelings, then the ultimate development on an organized social level is the concentration camp... The concentration camp is the final expression of human separateness and its ultimate consequence. It is organized abandonment. Paris Review (Summer 1966)

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„If only for this reason I regard the theater as a serious business, one that makes or should make man more human, which is to say, less alone.“

— Arthur Miller
Context: My conception of the audience is of a public each member of which is carrying about with him what he thinks is an anxiety, or a hope, or a preoccupation which is his alone and isolates him from mankind; and in this respect at least the function of a play is to reveal him to himself so that he may touch others by virtue of the revelation of his mutuality with them. If only for this reason I regard the theater as a serious business, one that makes or should make man more human, which is to say, less alone. Collected Plays (1958) Introduction, Section 2

„It is time, I think, that we who are without kings, took up this bright thread of our history and followed it to the only place it can possibly lead in our time — the heart and spirit of the average man.“

— Arthur Miller
Context: The possibility of victory must be there in tragedy. Where pathos rules, where pathos is finally derived, a character has fought a battle he could not possibly have won. The pathetic is achieved when the protagonist is, by virtue of his witlessness, his insensitivity, or the very air he gives off, incapable of grappling with a much superior force. Pathos truly is the mode for the pessimist. But tragedy requires a nicer balance between what is possible and what is impossible. And it is curious, although edifying, that the plays we revere, century after century, are the tragedies. In them, and in them alone, lies the belief — optimistic, if you will, in the perfectibility of man. It is time, I think, that we who are without kings, took up this bright thread of our history and followed it to the only place it can possibly lead in our time — the heart and spirit of the average man.

„I think one must finally take one's life in one's arms.“

— Arthur Miller
Context: I think it's a mistake to ever look for hope outside of one's self. One day the house smells of fresh bread, the next of smoke and blood. One day you faint because the gardener cuts his finger off, within a week you're climbing over corpses of children bombed in a subway. What hope can there be if that is so? I tried to die near the end of the war. The same dream returned each night until I dared not to go to sleep and grew quite ill. I dreamed I had a child, and even in the dream I saw it was my life, and it was an idiot, and I ran away. But it always crept onto my lap again, clutched at my clothes. Until I thought, if I could kiss it, whatever in it was my own, perhaps I could sleep. And I bent to its broken face, and it was horrible … but I kissed it. I think one must finally take one's life in one's arms.

„A fire, a fire is burning! I hear the boot of Lucifer, I see his filthy face! And it is my face, and yours, Danforth!“

— Arthur Miller
Context: A fire, a fire is burning! I hear the boot of Lucifer, I see his filthy face! And it is my face, and yours, Danforth! For them that quail to bring men out of ignorance, as I have quailed, and as you quail now when you know in all your black hearts that this be fraud — God damns our kind especially, and we will burn, we will burn together! John Proctor

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„More important, from this total questioning of what has previously been unquestioned, we learn.“

— Arthur Miller
Context: Only the passive, only those who accept their lot without active retaliation, are "flawless." Most of us are in that category. But there are among us today, as there always have been, those who act against the scheme of things that degrades them, and in the process of action everything we have accepted out of fear of insensitivity or ignorance is shaken before us and examined, and from this total onslaught by an individual against the seemingly stable cosmos surrounding us — from this total examination of the "unchangeable" environment — comes the terror and the fear that is classically associated with tragedy. More important, from this total questioning of what has previously been unquestioned, we learn.

„The possibility of victory must be there in tragedy.“

— Arthur Miller
Context: The possibility of victory must be there in tragedy. Where pathos rules, where pathos is finally derived, a character has fought a battle he could not possibly have won. The pathetic is achieved when the protagonist is, by virtue of his witlessness, his insensitivity, or the very air he gives off, incapable of grappling with a much superior force. Pathos truly is the mode for the pessimist. But tragedy requires a nicer balance between what is possible and what is impossible. And it is curious, although edifying, that the plays we revere, century after century, are the tragedies. In them, and in them alone, lies the belief — optimistic, if you will, in the perfectibility of man. It is time, I think, that we who are without kings, took up this bright thread of our history and followed it to the only place it can possibly lead in our time — the heart and spirit of the average man.

„My work is and, through my work, I am.“

— Arthur Miller
Context: I'm a fatalist. … I consider I am rejected in principle. My work is and, through my work, I am. If it's accepted, it's miraculous or the result of a misunderstanding. As quoted in [http://www.nytimes.com/2005/02/11/theater/newsandfeatures/11cnd-miller.html?ei=5070&en=3842d0df3195ba4c&ex=1148356800&adxnnlx=1148209567-ZnjnGzbndB3P1XvCU5BNDg&pagewanted=all&position= "Arthur Miller, Moral Voice of American Stage, Dies at 89" by Marilyn Berger in The New York Times (11 February 2005)]

„There's too much of an attempt, it seems to me, to think in terms of controlling man, rather than freeing him. Of defining him rather than letting him go. It's part of the whole ideology of this age, which is power-mad.“

— Arthur Miller
Context: My argument with so much of psychoanalysis, is the preconception that suffering is a mistake, or a sign of weakness, or a sign even of illness, when in fact, possibly the greatest truths we know have come out of people's suffering; that the problem is not to undo suffering or to wipe it off the face of the earth but to make it inform our lives, instead of trying to cure ourselves of it constantly and avoid it, and avoid anything but that lobotomized sense of what they call "happiness." There's too much of an attempt, it seems to me, to think in terms of controlling man, rather than freeing him. Of defining him rather than letting him go. It's part of the whole ideology of this age, which is power-mad. 1963 interview, used in The Century of the Self (2002)

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