Best Quotes by Lionel Trilling (Top 10)

  1. We are at heart so profoundly anarchistic that the only form of state we can imagine living in is Utopian; and so cynical that the only Utopia we can believe in is authoritarian.
  2. Immature artists imitate. Mature artists steal.
  3. Where misunderstanding serves others as an advantage, one is helpless to make oneself understood.
  4. Being a Jew is like walking in the wind or swimming: you are touched at all points and conscious everywhere.
  5. The poet is in command of his fantasy, while it is exactly the mark of the neurotic that he is possessed by his fantasy.
  6. It is now life and not art that requires the willing suspension of disbelief.
  7. We who are liberal and progressive know that the poor are our equals in every sense except that of being equal to us.
  8. The function of literature, through all its mutations, has been to make us aware of the particularity of selves, and the high authority of the self in its quarrel with its society and its culture. Literature is in that sense subversive.
  9. Youth is a time when we find the books we give up but do not get over.
  10. The immature artist imitates. Mature artists steal.

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