The story of innumerable beings that press in on our lives and to whom we respond, inadequately, through writing.
Walton, Heather. “Staging John Coetzee/Elizabeth Costello,” p. 292.
Over the past year his handwriting has, beyond his control, been growing smaller, smaller and more secretive.
Coetzee, J.M. Youth, p. 105.
Even Henry Miller, who presents himself as such a straightforward fellow, ready to make love to any woman no matter her shape or size, probably has a dark side which he is prudent enough to conceal.
Coetzee, J.M. Youth, p. 30.
All old folk become Cartesians.
Coetzee, J. M. Diary of a Bad Year, p. 181.
Because homeland is one of the magical fantasy words like unicorn and soul that have now passed into the language.
Smith, Zadie. White Teeth, p. 332.
It would be interesting to write an academic history of cultural studies (for example) through an analysis of letters of rejection.
Lawrence Grossberg. “Introduction: ‘Birmingham’ in America?” Bringing It All Back Home: Essays on Cultural Studies. Duke: Duke UP, 1997. 29.
Sir Edmund, who was a fairly corpulent man, a man who looked liked he might be hiding another man within him, practically skipped all the way home.
Smith, Zadie. White Teeth, p. 253.
For years I wore the well-fed look of a prize boar.
Coetzee, J.M. Waiting for the Barbarians, p. 44.
All birds are perhaps a little wrong, because an absolute once-and-for-all formula for a bird has never been found, just as all novels are bad because the correct formula for a novel has never been found.
Laxness, Halldór. Under the Glacier, p. 15.
Cynicism is our shared common language, the Esperanto that actually caught on, and though I’m not fluent in it—I like too many things, and I am not envious of enough people—I know enough to get by.
Hornby, Nick. How to Be Good, p. 163.