Norman Mailer Quotes
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Writing books is the closest men ever come to childbearing.
A modern democracy is a tyranny whose borders are undefined; one discovers how far one can go only by traveling in a straight line until one is stopped.
The function of socialism is to raise suffering to a higher level.
Khomeini has offered us the opportunity to regain our frail religion ... faith in the power of words.
There was that law of life, so cruel and so just, that one must grow or else pay more for remaining the same.
Any war that requires the suspension of reason as a necessity for support is a bad war.
America is a hurricane, and the only people who do not hear the sound are those fortunate if incredibly stupid and smug White Protestants who live in the center, in the serene eye of the big wind.
I was thinking that surgeons had to be the happiest people on earth. To cut people up and get paid for it-that's happiness, I told myself.
Love asks us that we be a little braver than is comfortable, a little more generous, a little more flexible. It means living on the edge more than we care to.
Reaching consensus in a group is often confused with finding the right answer.
I'm hostile to men, I'm hostile to women, I'm hostile to cats, to poor cockroaches, I'm afraid of horses.
In America few people will trust you unless you are irreverent.
Bright was the light of my last martini on my moral horizon
There is no greater impotence in all the world like knowing you are right and that the wave of the world is wrong, yet the wave crashes upon you.
Sentimentality is the emotional promiscuity of those who have no sentiment.
Harsh words live in the dungeon of the heart
We love those who can lead us to a place we will never reach without them.
A really good style comes only when a man has become as good as he can be. Style is character. A good style cannot come from a bad undisciplined character.
There are four stages to marriage. First there's the affair, then there's the marriage, then children, and finally the fourth stage, without which you cannot know a woman, the divorce.
Obsession is the single most wasteful human activity, because with an obsession you keep coming back and back and back to the same question and never get an answer.
If a person is not talented enough to be a novelist, not smart enough to be a lawyer, and his hands are too shaky to perform operations, he becomes a journalist.
The final purpose of art is to intensify, even, if necessary, to exacerbate, the moral consciousness of people.
Psychoanalysis and Zen, in my private psychic geometry, are equal to nicotine. They are anti-existential. Nicotine quarantines one out of existence.
I met Jack Kennedy in November, 1946... We went out on a double date and it turned out to be a fair evening for me. I seduced a girl who would have been bored by a diamond as big as the Ritz.
One will feel the same subtle nausea coming into the city or waiting to depart from it that one feels now in such plastic catacombs as O'Hare's reception center in Chicago.
Being a real writer means being able to do the work on a bad day.
Any workout which does not involve a certain minimum of danger or responsibility does not improve the body - it just wears it out.
The mark of mediocrity is to look for precedent.
Masculinity is not something given to you, but something you gain. And you gain it by winning small battles with honor.
Once a newspaper touches a story, the facts are lost forever, even to the protagonists.
I had a quick grasp of the secret to sanity, it had become the ability to hold the maximum of impossible combinations in one's mind.
The desire for success lubricates secret prostitution in the soul.
You don't know a woman until you've met her in court.
I don't think life is absurd. I think we are all here for a huge purpose. I think we shrink from the immensity of the purpose we are here for.
Writer’s block is only a failure of the ego.
Culture's worth huge, huge risks. Without culture we're all totalitarian beasts.
Left-wingers are incapable of conspiring because they are all egomaniacs.
Chicago is the great American city, New York is one of the capitals of the world, and Los Angeles is a constellation of plastic; San Francisco is a lady
There's that popular misconception of man as something between a brute and an angel. Actually man is in transit between brute and God.
The women's movement is filled with tyrants, just as men's political movements are equally filled.
Every moment of one's existence one is growing into more or retreating into less. One is always living a little more or dying a little bit.
Boredom slays more of existence than war.
Prevarication, like honesty, is reflexive, and soon becomes a sturdy habit, as reliable as truth.
The world's not what I want it to be. But then no one ever said I had the right to design the world.
I think it's bad to talk about one's present work, for it spoils something at the root of the creative act. It discharges the tension.
What characterizes a member of a minority group is that he is forced to see himself as both exceptional and insignificant, marvelous and awful, good and evil.
The war between being and nothingness is the underlying illness of the twentieth century. Boredom slays more of existence than war.
Alimony is the curse of the writing class.
Hip is the sophistication of the wise primitive in a giant jungle.
I don't hate women, but I think they should be kept in cages.