Zitate von José Martí

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José Martí

Geburtstag: 28. Januar 1853
Todesdatum: 19. Mai 1895

José Julián Martí y Pérez war ein kubanischer Poet und Schriftsteller und gilt als kubanischer Nationalheld sowie als Symbol für den Unabhängigkeitskampf seines Landes. Als Schriftsteller war er zusammen mit dem Nicaraguaner Rubén Darío Mitbegründer der ersten voll eigenständigen lateinamerikanischen Literaturbewegung, des Modernismos. Wikipedia

Zitate José Martí

„White and black racists would be equally guilty of racism.“

—  José Martí

My Race (1893)
Kontext: Ostentatious men who are governed by self-interest will combine, whether white or black, and the generous and selfless will similarly unite. True men, black and white, will treat one another with loyalty and tenderness, out of a sense of merit and the pride of everyone who honors the land in which we were born, black and white alike. Negroes, who now use the word "racist" in good faith, will stop using it when they realize it is the only apparently valid argument that weak men, who honestly believe that Negroes are inferior, use to deny them the full exercise of their rights as men. White and black racists would be equally guilty of racism.

„I come from all places
and to all places I go“

—  José Martí

I (Yo soy un hombre sincero) as translated by Esther Allen in José Martí : Selected Writings (2002), p. 273
Simple Verses (1891)
Kontext: I come from all places
and to all places I go:
I am art among the arts
and mountain among mountains. I know the strange names
of flowers and herbs
and of fatal deceptions
and magnificent griefs. In night's darkness I've seen
raining down on my head
pure flames, flashing rays
of beauty divine.

„I know that when the world
surrenders, pallid, to repose,
the murmur of a tranquil stream
through the deep silence flows.“

—  José Martí

I (Yo soy un hombre sincero) as translated by Esther Allen in José Martí : Selected Writings (2002), p. 275
Simple Verses (1891)

„The soul, equal and eternal, emanates from bodies of different shapes and colors. Whoever foments and spreads antagonism and hate between the races, sins against humanity.“

—  José Martí

Our America (1881)
Kontext: There can be no racial animosity, because there are no races. The theorist and feeble thinkers string together and warm over the bookshelf races which the well-disposed observer and the fair-minded traveller vainly seek in the justice of Nature where man's universal identity springs forth from triumphant love and the turbulent hunger for life. The soul, equal and eternal, emanates from bodies of different shapes and colors. Whoever foments and spreads antagonism and hate between the races, sins against humanity.

„Happiness exists on earth, and it is won through prudent exercise of reason, knowledge of the harmony of the universe, and constant practice of generosity.“

—  José Martí

Martí : Thoughts/Pensamientos (1994)
Kontext: Happiness exists on earth, and it is won through prudent exercise of reason, knowledge of the harmony of the universe, and constant practice of generosity. He who seeks it elsewhere will not find it for, having drunk from all the glasses of life, he will find satisfaction only in those.

„Men of action, above all those whose actions are guided by love, live forever.“

—  José Martí

Martí : Thoughts/Pensamientos (1994)
Kontext: Men of action, above all those whose actions are guided by love, live forever. Other famous men, those of much talk and few deeds, soon evaporate. Action is the dignity of greatness.

„A grain of poetry suffices to season a century.“

—  José Martí

Dedication of the Statue of Liberty (1887)
Quelle: Versos Sencillos: Simple Verses

„Day and night I always dream with open eyes.“

—  José Martí

"I dream awake" ["Ismaelillo"]
As quoted in Great Hispanic-Americans (2005) by Nicolás Kanellos, Robert Rodriguez and Tamra Orr, p. 72

„In truth, men speak too much of danger.“

—  José Martí

Martí : Thoughts/Pensamientos (1994)
Kontext: In truth, men speak too much of danger. Let others be terrified by the natural and healthy risks of life! We shall not be frightened! Poison sumac grows in a hard-working man's field, the serpent hisses from its hidden den, and the owl's eye shines in the belfry, but the sun goes on lighting the sky, and truth continues marching across the earth unscathed.

„I grow a white rose
In July just as in January
For the sincere friend
Who gives me his frank hand.
And for the cruel man who pulls out of me
the heart with which I live,
I grow neither nettles nor thorns:
I grow a white rose.“

—  José Martí

As translated in Spanish-American Poetry : A Dual-language Anthology (1996) by Seymour Resnick
Variant translation:
I cultivate a white rose
In July as in January
For the sincere friend
Who gives me his hand frankly. <p> And for the cruel person who tears out
the heart with which I live,
I cultivate neither nettles nor thorns:
I cultivate a white rose.
Simple Verses (1891), I Grow a White Rose

„One must have faith in the best in men and distrust the worst. One must allow the best to be shown so that it reveals and prevails over the worst.“

—  José Martí

Our America (1881)
Kontext: One must have faith in the best in men and distrust the worst. One must allow the best to be shown so that it reveals and prevails over the worst. Nations should have a pillory for whoever stirs up useless hate, and another for whoever fails to tell them the truth in time.

„Barricades of ideas are worth more than barricades of stones.“

—  José Martí

Our America (1881)
Kontext: Barricades of ideas are worth more than barricades of stones.
There is no prow that can cut through a cloudbank of ideas. A powerful idea, waved before the world at the proper time, can stop a squadron of iron-clad ships, like the mystical flag of the Last judgement.

„Love is the bond between men, the way to teach and the center of the world.“

—  José Martí

Martí : Thoughts/Pensamientos (1994)
Kontext: There is happiness in duty, although it may not seem so. To fulfill one's duty elevates the soul to a state of constant sweetness. Love is the bond between men, the way to teach and the center of the world.

„In night's darkness I've seen
raining down on my head
pure flames, flashing rays
of beauty divine.“

—  José Martí

I (Yo soy un hombre sincero) as translated by Esther Allen in José Martí : Selected Writings (2002), p. 273
Simple Verses (1891)
Kontext: I come from all places
and to all places I go:
I am art among the arts
and mountain among mountains. I know the strange names
of flowers and herbs
and of fatal deceptions
and magnificent griefs. In night's darkness I've seen
raining down on my head
pure flames, flashing rays
of beauty divine.

„A nation that neglects either of these forces perishes. They must be steered together, like a pair of carriage horses.“

—  José Martí

Martí : Thoughts/Pensamientos (1994)
Kontext: Fortunately, there is a sane equilibrium in the character of nations, as there is in that of men. The force of passion is balanced by the force of interest. An insatiable appetite for glory leads to sacrifice and death, but innate instinct leads to self-preservation and life. A nation that neglects either of these forces perishes. They must be steered together, like a pair of carriage horses.

„There must be a certain amount of decorum in the world, just as there must be a certain amount of light.“

—  José Martí

Martí : Thoughts/Pensamientos (1994)
Kontext: There are men who live contented though they live without decorum. Others suffer as if in agony when they see around them people living without decorum. There must be a certain amount of decorum in the world, just as there must be a certain amount of light. When there are many men without decorum, there are always others who themselves possess the decorum of many men. These are the ones who rebel with terrible strength against those who rob nations of their liberty, which is to rob men of their decorum. Embodied in those men are thousands of men, a whole people, human dignity.

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