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Elias Canetti Quotes

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Elias Canetti quotes

It doesn't matter how new an idea is: what matters is how new it becomes.

Success listens only to applause. To all else it is deaf.

All the things one has forgotten scream for help in dreams.

As if one could know the good a person is capable of, when one doesn't know the bad he might do.

Success is the space one occupies in the newspaper. Success is one day's insolence.

His head is made of stars, but not yet arranged into constellations.

The fear of burglars is not only the fear of being robbed, but also the fear of a sudden and unexpected clutch out of the darkness.

Adults find pleasure in deceiving a child. They consider it necessary, but they also enjoy it. The children very quickly figure it out and then practice deception themselves.

Justice requires that everyone should have enough to eat. But it also requires that everyone should contribute to the production of food.

There is nothing that man fears more than the touch of the unknown. He wants to see what is reaching towards him, and to be able to recognize or at least classify it. Man always tends to avoid physical contact with anything strange.

When you write down your life, every page should contain something no one has ever heard about.

Whether or not God is dead: it is impossible to keep silent about him who was there for so long.

The great writers of aphorisms read as if they had all known each other well.

The planet's survival has become so uncertain that any effort, any thought that presupposes an assured future amounts to a mad gamble.

The paranoiac is the exact image of the ruler. The only difference is their position in the world. One might even think the paranoiac the more impressive of the two because he is sufficient unto himself and cannot be shaken by failure.

People love as self-recognition what they hate as an accusation.

Someone who always has to lie discovers that every one of his lies is true.

Pessimists are not boring. Pessimists are right. Pessimists are superfluous.

Rulers who want to unleash war know very well that they must procure or invent a first victim.

The process of writing has something infinite about it. Even though it is interrupted each night, it is one single notation.