151 Total Quotes

James+A. Baldwin Quotes Page 5

James A. Baldwin, ,
We cannot discuss the state of our minorities until we first have some sense of what we are, who we are, what our goals are, and what we take life to be. The question is not what we can do now for the hypothetical Mexican, the hypothetical Negro. The question is what we really want out of life, for ourselves, what we think is real.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#Minorities

James A. Baldwin, ,
The establishment of democracy on the American continent was scarcely as radical a break with the past as was the necessity, which Americans faced, of broadening this concept to include black men.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#Multiculturalism

James A. Baldwin, ,
It is only in his music, which Americans are able to admire because a protective sentimentality limits their understanding of it, that the Negro in America has been able to tell his story.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#American Educator

James A. Baldwin, ,
You know, it's not the world that was my oppressor, because what the world does to you, if the world does it to you long enough and effectively enough, you begin to do to yourself.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#Oppression

James A. Baldwin, ,
Pessimists are the people who have no hope for themselves or for others. Pessimists are also people who think the human race is beneath their notice, that they're better than other human beings.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#Pessimism

James A. Baldwin, ,
He may be a very nice man. But I haven't got the time to figure that out. All I know is, he's got a uniform and a gun and I have to relate to him that way. That's the only way to relate to him because one of us may have to die.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#Police

James A. Baldwin, ,
Anyone who has struggled with poverty knows how extremely expensive it is to be poor.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#Poverty And The Poor

James A. Baldwin, ,
No one is more dangerous than he who imagines himself pure in heart: for his purity, by definition, is unassailable.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#Purity

James A. Baldwin, ,
When one begins to live by habit and by quotation, one has begun to stop living.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#Quotations

James A. Baldwin, ,
The American ideal of sexuality appears to be rooted in the American ideal of masculinity. This idea has created cowboys and Indians, good guys and bad guys, punks and studs, tough guys and softies, butch and faggot, black and white. It is an ideal so paralytically infantile that it is virtually forbidden -- as an unpatriotic act -- that the American boy evolve into the complexity of manhood.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#Sexuality

James A. Baldwin, ,
The greatest significance of the present student generation is that it is through them that the point of view of the subjugated is finally and inexorably being expressed.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#Students

James A. Baldwin, ,
The moment we break faith with one another, the sea engulfs us and the light goes out.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#Teams And Teamwork

James A. Baldwin, ,
We take our shape, it is true, within and against that cage of reality bequeathed us at our birth; and yet is precisely through our dependence on this reality that we are most endlessly betrayed.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#Truth

James A. Baldwin, ,
The price one pays for pursuing any profession, or calling, is an immediate knowledge of its ugly side.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#American Author #Vocation

James A. Baldwin, ,
The South is very beautiful but its beauty makes one sad because the lives that people live here, and have lived here, are so ugly.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#American Educator

James A. Baldwin, ,
The young think that failure is the Siberian end of the line, banishment from all the living, and tend to do what I then did--which was to hide.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#American Author #Failure

James A. Baldwin, ,
I imagine one of the reasons people cling to their hates so stubbornly is because they sense, once hate is gone, they will be forced to deal with pain.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#American Author

James A. Baldwin, ,
I love America more than any other country in the world and, exactly for this reason, I insist on the right to criticize her perpetually.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#American Author

James A. Baldwin, ,
It is very nearly impossible... to become an educated person in a country so distrustful of the independent mind.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#American Author

James A. Baldwin, ,
It was books that taught me that the things that tormented me most were the very things that connected me with all the people who were alive, or who had ever been alive.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#American Author

James A. Baldwin, ,
People can cry much easier than they can change.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#American Author

James A. Baldwin, ,
People who treat other people as less than human must not be surprised when the bread they have cast on the waters comes floating back to them, poisoned.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#American Author

James A. Baldwin, ,
The future is like heaven, everyone exalts it, but no one wants to go there now.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#American Author

James A. Baldwin, ,
The world is before you and you need not take it or leave it as it was when you came in.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#American Author

James A. Baldwin, ,
To be a Negro in this country and to be relatively conscious is to be in a rage almost all the time.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#American Author

James A. Baldwin, ,
An identity would seem to be arrived at by the way in which the person faces and uses his experience.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#American Educator

James A. Baldwin, ,
If you're treated a certain way you become a certain kind of person. If certain things are described to you as being real they're real for you whether they're real or not.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#American Educator

James A. Baldwin, ,
The making of an American begins at the point where he himself rejects all other ties, any other history, and himself adopts the vesture of his adopted land.
James A. Baldwin, ,
#American Educator