„Books, the children of the brain.“

—  Jonathan Swift, Sect. 1
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Jonathan Swift6
écrivain, satiriste, essayiste, pamphlétaire politique angl… 1667 - 1745
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Robert G. Ingersoll photo

„If the book and my brain are both the work of the same Infinite God, whose fault is it that the book and the brain do not agree? Either God should have written a book to fit my brain, or should have made my brain to fit his book.“

—  Robert G. Ingersoll Union United States Army officer 1833 - 1899
Context: Suppose then, that I do read this Bible honestly, fairly, and when I get through I am compelled to say, “The book is not true.” If this is the honest result, then you are compelled to say, either that God has made no revelation to me, or that the revelation that it is not true, is the revelation made to me, and by which I am bound. If the book and my brain are both the work of the same Infinite God, whose fault is it that the book and the brain do not agree? Either God should have written a book to fit my brain, or should have made my brain to fit his book.

Bill Cosby photo
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R.L. Stine photo
P. L. Travers photo

„I never wrote my books especially for children.“

—  P. L. Travers Australian-British novelist, actress and journalist 1899 - 1996
Context: I never wrote my books especially for children. … When I sat down to write Mary Poppins or any of the other books, I did not know children would read them. I’m sure there must be a field of “children’s literature” — I hear about it so often — but sometimes I wonder if it isn’t a label created by publishers and booksellers who also have the impossible presumption to put on books such notes as “from five to seven” or “from nine to twelve.” How can they know when a book will appeal to such and such an age? If you look at other so-called children’s authors, you’ll see they never wrote directly for children. Though Lewis Carroll dedicated his book to Alice, I feel it was an afterthought once the whole was already committed to paper. Beatrix Potter declared, “I write to please myself!” And I think the same can be said of Milne or Tolkien or Laura Ingalls Wilder. I certainly had no specific child in mind when I wrote Mary Poppins. How could I? If I were writing for the Japanese child who reads it in a land without staircases, how could I have written of a nanny who slides up the banister? If I were writing for the African child who reads the book in Swahili, how could I have written of umbrellas for a child who has never seen or used one? But I suppose if there is something in my books that appeals to children, it is the result of my not having to go back to my childhood; I can, as it were, turn aside and consult it (James Joyce once wrote, “My childhood bends beside me”). If we’re completely honest, not sentimental or nostalgic, we have no idea where childhood ends and maturity begins. It is one unending thread, not a life chopped up into sections out of touch with one another. Once, when Maurice Sendak was being interviewed on television a little after the success of Where the Wild Things Are, he was asked the usual questions: Do you have children? Do you like children? After a pause, he said with simple dignity: “I was a child.” That says it all.<!-- But don’t let me leave you with the impression that I am ungrateful to children. They have stolen much of the world’s treasure and magic in the literature they have appropriated for themselves. Think, for example, of the myths or Grimm’s fairy tales — none of which were written especially for them — this ancestral literature handed down by the folk. And so despite publishers’ labels and my own protestations about not writing especially for them, I am grateful that children have included my books in their treasure trove.

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Anthony Doerr photo
Jean-Louis Guez de Balzac photo

„There are no children of whom we are fonder than those that are born of our brains, to whom we are father and mother in one.“

—  Jean-Louis Guez de Balzac French author, best known for his epistolary essays 1597 - 1654
Socrate Chrétien, Discours VI. Translation reported in Harbottle's Dictionary of quotations French and Italian (1904), p. 67.

P. L. Travers photo

„I am grateful that children have included my books in their treasure trove.“

—  P. L. Travers Australian-British novelist, actress and journalist 1899 - 1996
Context: I never wrote my books especially for children. … When I sat down to write Mary Poppins or any of the other books, I did not know children would read them. I’m sure there must be a field of “children’s literature” — I hear about it so often — but sometimes I wonder if it isn’t a label created by publishers and booksellers who also have the impossible presumption to put on books such notes as “from five to seven” or “from nine to twelve.” How can they know when a book will appeal to such and such an age? If you look at other so-called children’s authors, you’ll see they never wrote directly for children. Though Lewis Carroll dedicated his book to Alice, I feel it was an afterthought once the whole was already committed to paper. Beatrix Potter declared, “I write to please myself!” And I think the same can be said of Milne or Tolkien or Laura Ingalls Wilder. I certainly had no specific child in mind when I wrote Mary Poppins. How could I? If I were writing for the Japanese child who reads it in a land without staircases, how could I have written of a nanny who slides up the banister? If I were writing for the African child who reads the book in Swahili, how could I have written of umbrellas for a child who has never seen or used one? But I suppose if there is something in my books that appeals to children, it is the result of my not having to go back to my childhood; I can, as it were, turn aside and consult it (James Joyce once wrote, “My childhood bends beside me”). If we’re completely honest, not sentimental or nostalgic, we have no idea where childhood ends and maturity begins. It is one unending thread, not a life chopped up into sections out of touch with one another. Once, when Maurice Sendak was being interviewed on television a little after the success of Where the Wild Things Are, he was asked the usual questions: Do you have children? Do you like children? After a pause, he said with simple dignity: “I was a child.” That says it all.<!-- But don’t let me leave you with the impression that I am ungrateful to children. They have stolen much of the world’s treasure and magic in the literature they have appropriated for themselves. Think, for example, of the myths or Grimm’s fairy tales — none of which were written especially for them — this ancestral literature handed down by the folk. And so despite publishers’ labels and my own protestations about not writing especially for them, I am grateful that children have included my books in their treasure trove.

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Marguerite Yourcenar photo
Marcus Tullius Cicero photo

„Times are bad. Children no longer obey their parents, and everyone is writing a book.“

—  Marcus Tullius Cicero Roman philosopher and statesman -106 - -43 avant J.-C.
As quoted in InfoWorld https://books.google.gr/books?id=qjgEAAAAMBAJ&pg=PA49&dq=, Vol. 23, No. 16, 16 April 2001, p. 49.

Joe Frazier photo

„Boxing is the only sport you can get your brain shook, your money took and your name in the undertaker book.“

—  Joe Frazier American boxer 1944 - 2011
Joe speaking on the great sport. http://www.gmanews.tv/pbr/article/212702/underdog-boxing-pumped-up-for-the-pacquiao-mosley-undercard-fights

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