Harold Bloom Famous Quotes & Sayings

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Top 100 Harold Bloom Quotes

#1. Greatness recognizes greatness, and is shadowed by it. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#2. Indeed the three prophecies about the death of individual art are, in their different ways, those of Hegel, Marx, and Freud. I don't see any way of getting beyond those prophecies. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#3. All canonical writing possesses the quality of making you feel strangeness at home. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#4. I define influence simply as literary love, tempered by defense. The defenses vary from poet to poet. But the overwhelming presence of love is vital to understanding how great literature works. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#5. Beckett despite his professed preference for Racine, is master and victim, and as such pervades Beckett's canonical drama, Endgame. Beckett's Hamlet follows the French model, in which excessive consciousness negates action, which is at some distance from Shakespeare's Hamlet. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#6. It is hard to go on living without some hope of encountering the extraordinary. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#7. Everyone wants a prodigy to fail; it makes our mediocrity more bearable. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#8. Characters carrying the playwright's disapproval is a un-Shakespearian burden. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#9. Therefore the fathers shall eat the sons in the midst of thee, and the sons shall eat their fathers; and I will execute judgments in thee, and the whole remnant of thee will I scatter into all the winds. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#10. Almost anything at all can be transmuted into a labyrinth. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#11. It is by extending oneself, by exercising some capacity previously unused that you come to a better knowledge of your own potential. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#12. But in the end, in the end one is alone. We are all of us alone. I mean I'm told these days we have to consider ourselves as being in society ... but in the end one knows one is alone, that one lives at the heart of a solitude. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#13. We all fear loneliness, madness, dying. Shakespeare and Walt Whitman, Leopardi and Hart Crane will not cure those fears. And yet these poets bring us fire and light. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#14. What we call a poem is mostly what is not there on the page. The strength of any poem is the poems that it has managed to exclude. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#15. People cannot stand the saddest truth I know about the very nature of reading and writing imaginative literature, which is that poetry does not teach us how to talk to other people: it teaches us how to talk to ourselves. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#16. Terror and rapture to Emily Dickinson are alternative words for "transport". - Author: Harold Bloom
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#17. Oscar Wilde's "beautiful untrue things" that save the imagination from falling into "careless habits of accuracy. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#18. We are destroying all esthetic standards in the name of social justice. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#19. Romance depends upon imperfect knowledge. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#20. At eighty-four, I can only write the way I go on teaching, personally and passionately. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#21. What matters in literature in the end is surely the idiosyncratic, the individual, the flavor or the color of a particular human suffering. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#22. Pragmatically, aesthetic value can be recognized or experienced, but it cannot be conveyed to those who are incapable of grasping its sensations and perceptions. To quarrel on its behalf is always a blunder. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#23. I myself do not believe that the Torah is any more or less the revealed Word of God than are Dante's Commedia, Shakespeare's King Lear, or Tolstoy's novels, all works of comparable literary sublimity - Author: Harold Bloom
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#24. The work of great poetry is to aid us to become free artists ourselves ... The art of reading poetry is an authentic training in the augmentation of consciousness, perhaps the most authentic of healthy modes. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#25. I have never believed that the critic is the rival of the poet, but I do believe that criticism is a genre of literature or it does not exist. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#26. Calling a work of sufficient literary power either religious or secular is a political decision, not an aesthetic one. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#27. The aesthetic and the agonistic are one, according to the ancient Greeks. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#28. Capital is necessary to the cultivation of esthetic value. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#29. Unless you have read and absorbed the best that can be read and absorbed, you will not think clearly or well. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#30. If they wish to alleviate the sufferings of the exploited classes, let them live up to their pretensions, let them abandon the academy and go out there and work politically and economically and in a humanitarian spirit. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#31. In fact, it is Shakespeare who gives us the map of the mind. It is Shakespeare who invents Freudian Psychology. Freud finds ways of translating it into supposedly analytical vocabulary. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#32. How to read "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone"? Why, very quickly, to begin with, and perhaps also to make an end. Why read it? Presumably, if you cannot be persuaded to read anything better, Rowling will have to do. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#33. Hamlet, Kiekegaard, Kafka are ironists in the wake of Jesus. All Western irony is a repetition of Jesus' enigmas/riddles, in amalgam with the ironies of Socrates. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#34. Aesthetic criticism returns us to the autonomy of imaginative literature and the sovereignty of the solitary soul, the reader not as a person in society but as the deep self, our ultimate inwardness. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#35. Shakespeare is universal. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#36. The aesthetic is an individual rather than a societal concern. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#37. I am not unique in my elegiac sadness at watching reading die, in the era that celebrates Stephen King and J.K. Rowling rather than Charles Dickens and Lewis Carroll. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#38. Like television, motion pictures, and computers, [Stephen] King has replaced reading ... the triumph of the genial King is a large emblem of the failures of American education. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#39. The inventor knows HOW to borrow. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#40. One mark of originality that can win canonical status for a literary work is strangeness that we either never altogether assimilate, or that becomes such a given that we are blinded to its idiosyncrasies. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#41. I cannot locate any aestetic dignity in [Stephen] King's writing: his public could not sustain it, nor could he ... Art unfortunately is rarely the fruit of earnestness, and King will be remembered as a sociological phenomenon, an image of the death of the Literate Reader. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#42. We'll try this first. If it doesn't work, we'll try something else. That's life, isn't it? - Author: Harold Bloom
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#43. I think the Greek New Testament is the strongest and most successful misreading of a great prior text in the entire history of influence. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#44. Hermetic angelology, studied by Corbin in his Avicenna and the Visionary Recital, posits a middle reality between sensory perceptions and divine revelations. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#45. To read in the service of any ideology is not to read at all. The mind's dialogue with itself is not primarily a social reality. All that the Western canon can bring one is the proper use of one's own solitude. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#46. King die hard, in Shakespeare and in life. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#47. Marxism, famously a cry of pain rather than a science, has had its poets, but so has every other major religious heresy. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#48. I take it that a successful therapy is an oxymoron. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#49. Dante subsumed everything, and so, in a sense, secularized nothing. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#50. Until you become yourself," Bloom avers, "what benefit can you be to others. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#51. Spiritual power and spiritual authority notoriously shade over into both politics and poetry. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#52. The idea of Herman Melville in a writing class is always distressing to me. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#53. Information is endlessly available to us; where shall wisdom be found? - Author: Harold Bloom
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#54. I think Freud is about contamination, but I think that is something he learned from Shakespeare, because Shakespeare is about nothing but contamination, you might say. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#55. What I think I have in common with the school of deconstruction is the mode of negative thinking or negative awareness, in the technical, philosophical sense of the negative, but which comes to me through negative theology. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#56. Personality, in our sense, is a Shakespearean invention. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#57. The unity of a great era is generally an illusion. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#58. No one yet has managed to be post-Shakespearean. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#59. What is supposed to be the very essence of Judaism - which is the notion that it is by study that you make yourself a holy people - is nowhere present in Hebrew tradition before the end of the first or the beginning of the second century of the Common Era. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#60. Thou shalt be a terror, and never shalt be any more. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#61. Nietzsche tended to equate the memorable with the painful. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#62. Lawrence will go on burying his own undertakers. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#63. Tradition is not only bending down, or process of benign transmission. It is also a conflict between past genius and present aspiration in which the price is literary survival or canonical inclusion. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#64. Great writing is always rewriting or revisionism, and is founded on a reading that clears space for the self. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#65. Reading well makes children more interesting both to themselves and others, a process in which they will develop a sense of being separate and distinct selves. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#66. All of us are, as Mr. Stevens said, "condemned to be that inescapable animal, ourselves. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#67. Originality must compound with inheritance. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#68. We read, I think, to repair our solitude, though pragmatically the better we read, the more solitary we become. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#69. One reads for oneself and for strangers. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#70. Beckett . . . Joyce . . . Proust . . . Shakespeare - Author: Harold Bloom
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#71. Memory is always in art, even when it works involuntarily. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#72. He can't think, he can't write. There's no discernible talent. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#73. I don't believe in myths of decline or myths of progress, even as regards the literary scene. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#74. Karl Marx is irrelevant to many millions of them because, in America, religion is the poetry of the people and not their opiate. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#75. I am naive enough to read incessantly because I cannot, on my own, get to know enough people profoundly enough. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#76. We read to find ourselves, more fully and more strangely than otherwise we could hope to find. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#77. Stephen King is Cervantes compared with David Foster Wallace. We have no standards left. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#78. Consciousness is the materia poetica that Shakespeare sculpts as Michelangelo sculpts marble. We feel the consciousness of Hamlet or Iago, and our own consciousness strangely expands. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#79. There's very little authentic study of the humanities remaining. My research assistant came to me two years ago saying she'd been in a seminar in which the teacher spent two hours saying that Walt Whitman was a racist. This isn't even good nonsense. It's insufferable. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#80. Brecht was a cynical bohemian bogey of the middle classes, but also much more than a mere provocateur. He developed and dramatized his political knowledge in remarkable ways, and was an outspoken, radical opponent of the war, its nationalism and its capitalism - Author: Harold Bloom
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#81. seeking comfort through continuity, as grand voices somehow hold off the permanent darkness that gathers though it does not fall. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#82. Sometimes one succeeds, sometimes one fails. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#83. Urging the need for community upon American religionists is a vain enterprise; the experiential encounter with Jesus or God is too overwhelming for memories of community to abide, and the believer returns from the abyss of ecstasy with the self enhanced and otherness devalued. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#84. The most beautiful prose paragraph yet written by any American. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#85. Everything in life is arbitrary yet must be over-determined in literature. Jean McGarry knows how to tell a persuasive tale illuminating these truths. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#86. If I were to sum up the negative reactions to my work, I think there are two primary causes: one is that if there is discourse about anxiety it is necessarily going to induce anxiety. It will represent a return of the repressed for a great many people. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#87. I would say that there is no future for literary studies as such in the United States. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#88. A poem, novel, or play acquires all of humanity's disorders, including the fear of mortality - Author: Harold Bloom
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#89. In the finest critics one hears the full cry of the human. They tell one why it matters to read. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#90. No one has yet managed to be post-Shakespearean. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#91. If we read the Western Canon in order to form our social, political, or personal moral values, I firmly believe we will become monsters of selfishness and exploitation. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#92. Vision is defined as a program for restoring the human. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#93. Criticism in the universities, I'll have to admit, has entered a phase where I am totally out of sympathy with 95% of what goes on. It's Stalinism without Stalin. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#94. The art and passion of reading well and deeply is waning, but [Jane] Austen still inspires people to become fanatical readers. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#95. The reception of aesthetic power enables us to learn how to talk to ourselves and how to endure ourselves. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#96. Shakespeare's exquisite imagining belies our total inability to live in the present moment. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#97. To be a poet did not occur to me. It was indeed a threshold guarded by demons. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#98. Criticism starts - it has to start - with a real passion for reading. It can come in adolescence, even in your twenties, but you must fall in love with poems. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#99. Shakespeare is the true multicultural author. He exists in all languages. He is put on the stage everywhere. Everyone feels that they are represented by him on the stage. - Author: Harold Bloom
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#100. A superb and dreadfully moving account of the glory and subsequent murder by the Romanians of the Jewish city in Odessa ... Odessa is both celebration and lament and equally impressive as both. - Author: Harold Bloom
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