Quotes of James Baldwin

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

- James Baldwin

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

- James Baldwin

“ Those who say it can’t be done are usually interrupted by others doing it. ”

- James Baldwin

“ Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced. ”

- James Baldwin

“ Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced. ”

- James Baldwin

“ We made the world we’re living in and we have to make it over. ”

- James Baldwin

“ Children have never been very good at listening to their elders, but they have never failed to imitate them. ”

- James Baldwin

“ Children have never been very good at listening to their elders, but they have never failed to imitate them. ”

- James Baldwin

“ Those who say it can’t be done are usually interrupted by others doing it. ”

- James Baldwin

“ The most dangerous creation of any society is the man who has nothing to lose. ”

- James Baldwin

“ The most dangerous creation of any society is the man who has nothing to lose. ”

- James Baldwin

“ Life is more important than art; that’s what makes art important. ”

- James Baldwin

“ Take no one’s word for anything, including mine – but trust your experience. ”

- James Baldwin

“ People are trapped in history and history is trapped in them. ”

- James Baldwin

“ American history is longer, larger, more various, more beautiful, and more terrible than anything anyone has ever said about it. ”

- James Baldwin

“ A child cannot be taught by anyone who despises him. ”

- James Baldwin

“ Children have never been very good at listening to their elders, but they have never failed to imitate them. ”

- James Baldwin

“ People are trapped in history and history is trapped in them. ”

- James Baldwin

“ American history is longer, larger, more various, more beautiful, and more terrible than anything anyone has ever said about it. ”

- James Baldwin

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

- James Baldwin

“ Love does not begin and end the way we seem to think it does. Love is a battle, love is a war; love is a growing up. ”

- James Baldwin

“ 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. ”

- James Baldwin

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

- James Baldwin

“ Love does not begin and end the way we seem to think it does. Love is a battle, love is a war; love is a growing up. ”

- James Baldwin

“ It is perfectly possible to be enamoured of Paris while remaining totally indifferent or even hostile to the French. ”

- James Baldwin

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

- James Baldwin

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

- James Baldwin

“ Life is tragic simply because the earth turns and the sun inexorably rises and sets, and one day, for each of us, the sun will go down for the last, last time. Perhaps the whole root of our trouble, the human trouble, is that we will sacrifice all the beauty of our lives, will imprison ourselves in totems, taboos, crosses, blood sacrifices, steeples, mosques, races, armies, flags, nations, in order to deny the fact of death, the only fact we have. It seems to me that one ought to rejoice in the fact of deathought to decide, indeed, to earn one's death by confronting with passion the conundrum of life. One is responsible for life: It is the small beacon in that terrifying darkness from which we come and to which we shall return. ”

- James Baldwin

“ For I am—or I was—one of those people who pride themselves in on their willpower, on their ability to make a decision and carry it through. This virtue, like most virtues, is ambiguity itself. People who believe that they are strongwilled and the masters of their destiny can only continue to believe this by becoming specialists in selfdeception. Their decisions are not really decisions at all—a real decision makes one humble, one knows that it is at the mercy of more things than can be named—but elaborate systems of evasion, of illusion, designed to make themselves and the world appear to be what they and the world are not. This is certainly what my decision, made so long ago in Joey’s bed, came to. I had decided to allow no room in the universe for something which shamed and frightened me. I succeeded very well—by not looking at the universe, by not looking at myself, by remaining, in effect, in constant motion. ”

- James Baldwin

“ Know from whence you came. If you know whence you came, there are absolutely no limitations to where you can go. ”

- James Baldwin
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