„A scholar is like a book written in a dead language — it is not every one that can read in it.“

—  William Hazlitt, "Common Places," No. 13, The Literary Examiner (September - December 1823)
William Hazlitt Foto
William Hazlitt6
englischer Essayist und Schriftsteller 1778 - 1830
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Brandon Sanderson Foto
Toni Morrison Foto

„A dead language is not only one no longer spoken or written, it is unyielding language content to admire its own paralysis. Like statist language, censored and censoring.“

—  Toni Morrison American writer 1931
Nobel Prize Lecture (1993), Context: A dead language is not only one no longer spoken or written, it is unyielding language content to admire its own paralysis. Like statist language, censored and censoring. Ruthless in its policing duties, it has no desire or purpose other than maintaining the free range of its own narcotic narcissism, its own exclusivity and dominance. However moribund, it is not without effect for it actively thwarts the intellect, stalls conscience, suppresses human potential. Unreceptive to interrogation, it cannot form or tolerate new ideas, shape other thoughts, tell another story, fill baffling silences.

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Richard Dawkins Foto

„Suggest always put Islamic "scholar" in quotes, to avoid insulting true scholars. True scholars have read more than one book.“

—  Richard Dawkins English ethologist, evolutionary biologist and author 1941
Twitter, https://twitter.com/RichardDawkins/status/492729120418430976 (25 July 2014)

„To ask them to read books whose life-breath is pure thought and beauty is as though one asked them to read things written in a language they do not understand and have no desire to learn.“

—  John Lancaster Spalding Catholic bishop 1840 - 1916
Aphorisms and Reflections (1901), Context: The multitude are matter-of-fact. They live in commonplace concerns and interests. Their problems are, how to get more plentiful and better food and drink, more comfortable and beautiful clothing, more commodious dwellings, for themselves and their children. When they seek relaxation from their labors for material things, they gossip of the daily happenings, or they play games or dance or go to the theatre or club, or they travel or they read story books, or accounts in the newspapers of elections, murders, peculations, marriages, divorces, failures and successes in business; or they simply sit in a kind of lethargy. They fall asleep and awake to tread again the beaten path. While such is their life, it is not possible that they should take interest or find pleasure in religion, poetry, philosophy, or art. To ask them to read books whose life-breath is pure thought and beauty is as though one asked them to read things written in a language they do not understand and have no desire to learn. A taste for the best books, as a taste for whatever is best, is acquired; and it can be acquired only by long study and practice. It is a result of free and disinterested self-activity, of efforts to attain what rarely brings other reward than the consciousness of having loved and striven for the best. But the many have little appreciation of what does not flatter or soothe the senses. Their world, like the world of children and animals, is good enough for them; meat and drink, dance and song, are worth more, in their eyes, than all the thoughts of all the literatures. A love tale is better than a great poem, and the story of a bandit makes Plutarch seem tiresome. This is what they think and feel, and what, so long as they remain what they are, they will continue to think and feel. We do not urge a child to read Plato—why should we find fault with the many for not loving the best books? pp. 11-12

Oscar Wilde Foto

„Every book, remember, is dead until a reader activates it by reading. Every time that you read you are walking among the dead, and, if you are listening, you just might hear prophecies.“

—  Kathy Acker, Trouble on Triton: An Ambiguous Heterotopia
Context: Every book, remember, is dead until a reader activates it by reading. Every time that you read you are walking among the dead, and, if you are listening, you just might hear prophecies. Aeneas did. Odysseus did. Listen to Delany, a prophet. "On Delany the Magician", a foreword to Trouble on Triton (1996) by Samuel R. Delany, and reprinted in Acker's collection Bodies of Work (1996)

Edmund Wilson Foto

„In a sense, one can never read the book that the author originally wrote, and one can never read the same book twice.“

—  Edmund Wilson American writer, literary and social critic, and noted man of letters 1895 - 1972
The Triple Thinkers (1938) [Oxford University Press, 1948], Preface, p. ix

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Tamora Pierce Foto
Peter Greenaway Foto
Sören Kierkegaard Foto
Alice James Foto

„What sense of superiority it gives one to escape reading some book which every one else is reading.“

—  Alice James American diarist 1848 - 1892
As quoted in Alice James, Her Brothers — Her Journal (1934).

„Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam egestas wisi a erat. Morbi imperdiet, mauris ac auctor dictum.“