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Zeno’s Conscience: quotes (19)

My deeply felt desire for novelty was satisfied by Giovanni Malfenti, so different from me and from all the people whose company and friendship I had sought in the past. Having gone though two university departments, I was fairly cultivated, thanks also to my long inertia, which I consider highly educational. He, on the contrary,…

The Moviegoer: quotes (21)

“One last question to satisfy my idle curiosity. What has been going on in your mind during all the years when we listened to music together, read the Crito, and spoke together—or was it only I who spoke—good Lord, I can’t remember—of goodness and truth and beauty and nobility?” Another cry and the ramoneur is…

Zeno’s Conscience: quotes (18)

Mother Nature wants this but cannot direct us openly, because at that time of life we haven’t the slightest thought of children, so she induces us to believe that our wife will also bring about a renewal of ourselves: a curious illusion not confirmed by any text. In fact, we live then, one beside the…

The Moviegoer: quotes (20)

It is my mother’s way to see life, past and present, in terms of a standard comic exaggeration. If she had spent four years in Buchenwald, she would recollect it so: “So I said to him: listen, Mister, if you think I’m going to eat this stuff, you’ve got another think coming.” . . .…

A Confederacy of Dunces: quotes (19)

He noticed with interest that the old woman was beginning to nod at her desk. Working conditions looked wonderful. “I have a valve which is subject to vicissitudes which may force me to lie abed on certain days. Several more attractive organizations are currently vying for my services. I must consider them first.” “Mrs. Levy…

Zeno’s Conscience: quotes (17)

IN THE MIND of a young man from a middle-class family, the concept of human life is associated with that of a career, and in early youth the career is that of Napoleon I. This is not to say that the young man dreams of becoming emperor, for you can remain at a much lower…

The Moviegoer: quotes (19)

A good rotation. A rotation I define as the experiencing of the new beyond the expectation of the experiencing of the new. For example, taking one’s first trip to Taxco would not be a rotation, or no more than a very ordinary rotation; but getting lost on the way and discovering a hidden valley would…

Zeno’s Conscience: quotes (16)

I returned to the religion of my childhood and remained there for a long time. I imagined that my father heard me and I could tell him that the fault had been not mine but the doctor’s. The lie was of no importance because now he understood everything, and so did I. And for quite…

The Moviegoer: quotes (18)

Sometimes when she mentions God, it strikes me that my mother uses him as but one of the devices that come to hand in an outrageous man’s world, to be put to work like all the rest in the one enterprise she has any use for: the canny management of the shocks of life. It…