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Quotations by Subject
- How much easier it is to be critical than to be correct.
- Benjamin Disraeli (1804 - 1881), speech, January 24, 1860
- Asking a working writer what he thinks about critics is like asking a lamppost how it feels about dogs.
- Christopher Hampton
- Any fool can criticize, condemn, and complain - and most fools do.
- Dale Carnegie
- If you are not criticized, you may not be doing much.
- Donald H. Rumsfeld (1932 - ), Secretary of Defense
- After all, one knows one's weak points so well, that it's rather bewildering to have the critics overlook them and invent others.
- Edith Wharton (1862 - 1937)
- To avoid criticism do nothing, say nothing, be nothing.
- Elbert Hubbard (1856 - 1915)
- Do what you feel in your heart to be right - for you'll be criticized anyway. You'll be damned if you do, and damned if you don't.
- Eleanor Roosevelt (1884 - 1962)
- Honest criticism is hard to take, particularly from a relative, a friend, an acquaintance, or a stranger.
- Franklin P. Jones
- Criticism is prejudice made plausible.
- H. L. Mencken (1880 - 1956)
- No degree of dullness can safeguard a work against the determination of critics to find it fascinating.
- Harold Rosenberg
- Now, in reality, the world have paid too great a compliment to critics, and have imagined them to be men of much greater profundity than they really are.
- Henry Fielding (1707 - 1754)
- Pay no attention to what the critics say... Remember, a statue has never been set up in honor of a critic!
- Jean Sibelius (1865 - 1957), quoted in Bengt de Torne "Sibelius: A Close-Up" 1937
- Against criticism a man can neither protest nor defend himself; he must act in spite of it, and then it will gradually yield to him.
- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749 - 1832)
- Any reviewer who expresses rage and loathing for a novel is preposterous. He or she is like a person who has put on full armor and attacked a hot fudge sundae.
- Kurt Vonnegut (1922 - 2007)
- Never criticize a man until you've walked a mile in his moccasins.
- Native American Proverb
- I never met anybody who said when they were a kid, "I wanna grow up and be a critic."
- Richard Pryor (1940 - 2005), Guardian Unlimited (UK) August 9, 2004
- One cannot review a bad book without showing off.
- W. H. Auden (1907 - 1973)
- People ask for criticism, but they only want praise.
- W. Somerset Maugham (1874 - 1965), "Of Human Bondage", 1915
- Criticism comes easier than craftsmanship.
- Zeuxis (~400 BC), from Pliny the Elder, Natural History