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Philip Gilbert Hamerton's Quotes

Philip Gilbert Hamerton profile photo

Born: 1970-01-01
Profession: Artist
Nation: English
Biography of Philip Gilbert Hamerton

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Have you ever observed that we pay much more attention to a wise passage when it is quoted than when we read it in the original author?

Tags: Attention, Read, Wise

We need society, and we need solitude also, as we need summer and winter, day and night, exercise and rest.

Tags: Night, Society, Solitude

Novels are make-believe and play for adults.

Tags: Novels

Oftentimes I deliberately put ambiguity into my books so that... the reader is left with an echo of: 'How much of this was from me?'

Tags: Books, Left, Put

Only in novels can we take another human being into our head and create something jointly.

Tags: Another, Head, Human

Pakistan hasn't been cast in the role of... interesting cultural place or, you know, land of great comedians.

Tags: Great, Land, Place

Sufi poetry is, in a sense, self-help poetry about how to live a decent life, how to deal with your mortality.

Tags: Life, Poetry, Sense

The world seems concerned with Pakistan primarily as an actor in global attempts to combat terrorism.

Tags: Actor, Seems, Terrorism

We need a self because the complexity of the chemical processes that make up our individual humanities exceeds the processing power of our brains.

Tags: Individual, Power, Self

When I travel, I feel more like a nomad than a tourist.

Tags: Nomad, Tourist, Travel

When I'm writing well, I feel happy. And when I go too long without writing, I begin to implode.

Tags: Begin, Happy, Writing

When people talk about the death of the novel, they are speaking of the need for the birth of something different.

Tags: Birth, Death, Talk

When terrorism strikes, divisive anger is a natural response.

Tags: Anger, Natural, Terrorism

When the machine of a human being is turned on, it seems to produce a protagonist, just as a television produces an image.

Tags: Human, Seems, Television

'Which is stronger, politics or love?' is like asking, 'Which is stronger, exhaling or inhaling?' They are two sides of the same thing.

Tags: Love, Politics, Stronger

Americans need to educate themselves, from elementary school onward, about what their country has done abroad. And they need to play a more active role in ensuring that what the United States does abroad is not merely in keeping with a foreign policy elite's sense of realpolitik but also with the American public's own sense of American values.

Tags: Country, Done, School

As a child I read all kinds of stuff, whether it was 'Asterix and Obelix' and 'Tin Tin' comic books, or 'Lord of the Rings,' or Frank Herbert's sci-fi. Or 'The Wind in the Willows.' Or 'Charlotte's Web.'

Tags: Child, Lord, Wind

Basically, asking me what kind of music I like is like asking what kind of food I like: 'Anything that tastes good,' is the answer. I'm the kind of guy who spends three times as much on his speakers as he does on his television.

Tags: Food, Good, Music

Being outside the candy store looking in is the state of people today. Whether you're in a Pakistani village watching somebody in a car drive by, or you're in the city of Lahore going to a restaurant and seeing somebody with a security entourage coming in... you're exposed to people with more.

Tags: Car, Looking, Today

Capitalism is like the law of the jungle with a few rules. There isn't another system that works for our society but left unchecked, capitalism can have a dehumanising effect.

Tags: Another, Law, Society

Certainly, historically, there has been more attention given in the international media to Indian English-language writers than to Pakistani English-language writers. But that, in my opinion, was justified by the sheer number of excellent writers coming from India and the Indian diaspora.

Tags: Attention, Excellent, Opinion

Chance plays a powerful role in every life - our brains and personalities are just chemical soup, after all; a few drops here or there matter enormously - but consequences often become more serious as income levels go down.

Tags: After, Life, Powerful

Farmers and people who make a living from the land are finding it impossible to survive. So the first step is to get out of that place. Come to the city where there are opportunities.

Tags: Impossible, Living, Place
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For a combination of reasons, and despite evident fondness for American products and individuals, my impression is that most Pakistanis have extremely negative views of the U.S. as a geopolitical player.

Tags: American, Negative, Player

For me, writing a novel is more like digging a well than climbing a mountain - some heroic thing where I set out to conquer. I just sit quietly for a few years, and then it starts to become something.

Tags: Become, Few, Writing

For people who are at the bottom economically, the world is becoming a harder and harder place. And yet the incentives to become rich are so great because enormous amounts of wealth are being accumulated. And so those two things, that carrot and stick, are beating people along this trajectory of trying desperately to move up in the world.

Tags: Great, Rich, Trying

I am sometimes asked to name my favourite books. The list changes, depending on my mood, the year, tricks played by memory. I might mention novels by Nabokov and Calvino and Tolkien on one occasion, by Fitzgerald and Baldwin and E.B. White on another. Camus often features, as do Tolstoy, Borges, Morrison and Manto.

Tags: Another, Often, Sometimes

I come from an enormous and very close family. I have over a dozen aunts and uncles in Pakistan, dozens of cousins. I have many close friends. I have received so much love in Lahore that the city always pulls me.

Tags: Family, Friends, Love

I don't want to be a Michael Moore-style artist, which is not to disparage Michael Moore. But he seems rather unsuccessful at winning people over who don't already agree with him.

Tags: Him, Rather, Winning

I don't want to be a propagandist or say that Pakistan is just great. There are problems, but it is a much more complex place than we are given to believe.

Tags: Great, Place, Problems

I like the idea of an open, international London that thrives on attracting hard-working, talented people but has the confidence to tell them they must play by the same rules as everyone else.

Tags: Confidence, Else, Tell

I think I've always been drawn to the second person. When I was growing up and playing with my friends, the usual way we interacted with imaginary worlds was as characters: a bench was 'your' boat, leaves on a lawn were the fins of sharks out to get 'you.'

Tags: Friends, Growing, Playing

I think if you say that art and politics, or religion and politics, mustn't mix, don't mix, that is itself a political statement. Even if you are writing a 19th-century novel where the money comes from a plantation in the Caribbean and you don't talk about that, that itself is a political thing.

Tags: Money, Politics, Religion

I think the most effective forms of critique are ones that establish a common ground for people to occupy, and then appeal to the best nature of people on that common ground.

Tags: Best, Common, Nature

I think there's a growing courage among the younger generation of American writers. Because of the more superficial treatment of characters taking place in cinema, they have had to deal with that by digging deeper into who these people are.

Tags: American, Courage, Place

I took a couple of creative writing classes with Joyce Carol Oates at Princeton University, and in my senior year there, I took a long fiction workshop with Toni Morrison. I fell in love with it.

Tags: Creative, Love, Writing

I'm not a representative of Pakistan; I'm just an example that Pakistanis are different from each other. I believe it in my fiction and I believe it personally.

Tags: Example, Fiction, Pakistan

I've realized that it's important to stop trying to think I'm any one thing. People are confused as to their identity and try to cling to one aspect of that identity to describe what they are: American, Republican, Muslim. These are really incomplete.

Tags: Confused, Try, Trying

If it takes you seven years to write each novel, you need a patron. And I would rather have my corporate self as my patron than any arts council or bestower of grants.

Tags: Rather, Self, Write

In Sufi terms, there are two very interesting notions of transcendence. One is to gaze out at the universe and to comprehend that what you see out there reflects what you are. The other one is to look inside yourself and recognise that the universe is present there.

Tags: Present, Universe, Yourself

In writing literary fiction, you are trying to help yourself. And readers are going to literary fiction not just to be entertained, but because they feel something else will happen; that the experience will take them beyond themselves and show them something they haven't seen before.

Tags: Experience, Help, Yourself

Islamophobia, in all its guises, seeks to minimise the importance of the individual and maximise the importance of the group. Yet our instinctive stance ought to be one of suspicion towards such endeavours. For individuals are undeniably real. Groups, on the other hand, are assertions of opinion.

Tags: Group, Opinion, Real

It is not surprising that most Pakistanis do not support America's bombardment of Afghanistan. The Afghans are neighbours on the brink of starvation and devastated by war. America has shown itself to be untrustworthy, a superpower that uses its values as a scabbard for its sword.

Tags: America, Support, War

It's very easy, if you come from a place like Pakistan, to imagine that there's a narrative of American aggression towards the place that you come from. But that, in itself, is just a political view.

Tags: American, Place, Political

Like many kids, I used to pretend all sorts of things. I would climb into a tree and imagine that I was on an island, that the grass below we was an ocean, that the leaves were the fins of sharks. Perhaps unlike many people, I never really stopped. I still have a childlike predisposition to fantasise and share my fantasies.

Tags: Kids, Ocean, Used

Like many of my friends in the Pakistani diaspora - and many of my friends in Pakistan itself, for that matter - I have sometimes looked at the country of my birth and wondered whether its future will be one of steady and sad decline.

Tags: Country, Future, Sad

Lived religion is a very different thing from strict textual analysis. Very few people of any faith live their lives as literalist interpretations of scripture.

Tags: Faith, Few, Religion

Maybe we are all prospective migrants. The lines of national borders on maps are artificial constructs, as unnatural to us as they are to birds flying overhead. Our first impulse is to ignore them.

Tags: Ignore, Maybe, National

Most Muslims do not 'choose' Islam in the way that they choose to become doctors or lawyers, nor even in the way that they choose to become fans of Coldplay or Radiohead. Most Muslims, like people of any faith, are born into their religion.

Tags: Faith, Islam, Religion

My earliest memories are of watching 'Star Trek' and 'MASH' while my parents barbecued chicken in the back yard. I was an American kid, through and through.

Tags: American, Parents, While

My grandparents used to pray five times a day, but they were quiet about their own thing. Completely liberal day by day; my grandmother was a social worker and my grandfather was an engineer, but they never talked about religion. My entire life I couldn't remember one conversation I had with them about religion.

Tags: Life, Religion, Remember

Nothing good gets written without the writer suffering along the way, in my opinion. Writing should be a pleasure, but unless you feel almost broken many, many times in the journey to a novel, you haven't pushed yourself hard enough.

Tags: Good, Writing, Yourself

Novel writing is the slowest art form in the world. It is not a sprint. It is not even a marathon. It is a series of marathons that stretch over and over across a continent.

Tags: Art, Novel, Writing

Pakistan now is like a horror film franchise. You know, it's 'Friday the 13th, Episode 63: The Terrorist from Pakistan.' And each time we hear of Pakistan it's in that context.

Tags: Film, Friday, Time

Part of the reason people abroad resent the United States is something Americans can do very little about: envy. The richest, most powerful country in the world attracts the jealousy of others in much the same way that the richest, most powerful man in a small town attracts the jealousy of others.

Tags: Envy, Jealousy, Powerful

Television has given Pakistan a truly open national forum for the first time in its history. Ideas are debated, leaders are assessed and criticised, and a nation of 170 million people is finally discovering, together, what it thinks.

Tags: History, Time, Together

The four places I've called home in my life have been Lahore, London, New York and California. And I have a very strong tie to each one of those four places.

Tags: Home, Life, Strong

There are many cultural scenes in Lahore, just as there are in London. And there is a celebrity culture here, just as there is in London. But in Lahore, the celebrity scene doesn't drown out the rest quite so much.

Tags: Culture, Here, Rest

There is a huge sense of loneliness as people leave villages and move to cities. It's hard to find that human connection as you move away from where you started.

Tags: Hard, Human, Loneliness

Violent cities, people who live in violent cities, find a way - as New Yorkers did 30 or 40 years ago - they find a way to just carry on. But you're stressed out. You're worried, you know.

Tags: Carry, Violent, Worried

Childbirth changed my perception of my wife. She was now the bloodied special forces soldier who had fought and risked everything for our family.

Tags: Family, Special, Wife

A reader should encounter themselves in a novel, I think.

Tags: Novel, Reader, Themselves

America's strength has made it a sort of Gulliver in world affairs: By wiggling its toes it can, often inadvertently, break the arm of a Lilliputian.

Tags: America, Often, Strength

As a writer, I am constantly aware that I take my life in my hands with everything I do and say. It's just a fact of life. For me it always has been.

Tags: Fact, Life, Writer

Being a writer is not the point. Writing is.

Tags: Point, Writer, Writing

Empathy is about finding echoes of another person in yourself.

Tags: Another, Empathy, Yourself

For me, writing a novel is like solving a puzzle. But I don't intend my novels as puzzles. I intend them as invitations to dance.

Tags: Dance, Novel, Writing

Growing up in Pakistan in the 1980s, I lived in the shadow of a tyrannical state.

Tags: Growing, Lived, State

How many big businesses don't resort to underhand means?

Tags: Big, Businesses, Means

I am a strong believer in the intertwined nature of the personal and the political; I think they move together.

Tags: Nature, Political, Strong

I am not much of a researcher as a novelist; I write mainly from experience.

Tags: Experience, Novelist, Write

I believe one can gauge a book's impact only after about 10 years.

Tags: After, Book, Impact

I don't know if I'm truly at home in any language.

Tags: Home, Language, Truly

I don't listen to music when I write. I need silence so I can hear the sound of the words.

Tags: Music, Silence, Words

I take six or seven years to write really small books. There is a kind of aesthetic of leanness, of brevity.

Tags: Books, Small, Write

I think there's a natural link between the fact that our self is a story that we make up and that we're drawn to stories. It resonates, in a way.

Tags: Between, Fact, Self

I think there's really strong social stratification in South Asia.

Tags: Social, South, Strong

I was 30 when 9/11 happened and I had lived exactly 15 years of life in America, so I was half American. I was a full-fledged New Yorker.

Tags: America, American, Life

I'd rather create a miniature painting than a Taj Mahal of a book.

Tags: Book, Create, Rather

I'm not sure if guys are supposed to read Vanity Fair. I feel very metrosexual with it but am not sure it's in my comfort zone.

Tags: Fair, Read, Sure

If your sense of self is destabilised, to imagine being another becomes pretty easy.

Tags: Pretty, Self, Sense

Islam is not a race, yet Islamophobia partakes of racist characteristics.

Tags: Islam, Race

Literature helps us transcend ourselves.

Tags: Literature, Ourselves, Transcend

Love places someone else in the centre of your being and your own self is blurred.

Tags: Love, Self, Someone

Novel writing is solitary work.

Tags: Novel, Work, Writing

AIDS today is not a death sentence. It can be treated as a chronic illness, or a chronic disease.

Tags: Death, Illness, Today

Alleviation of suffering is my fundamental principle.

Tags: Principle, Suffering

As long as I can contribute, I'll continue working.

Tags: Continue, Contribute, Working

Cipla has a strong professional management team, and we take team decisions. My brother has been working at Cipla since 1973.

Tags: Strong, Team, Working

Clinton has played a major role in giving companies like Cipla credibility, for which I will always be grateful.

Tags: Giving, Grateful, Played

Every country has the right to determine its own laws. And India can't afford monopolies.

Tags: Country, India, Laws

I believe that life-saving, essential drugs should be freely available and the innovator should be paid a suitable royalty payment for his invention.

Tags: Essential, Invention, Paid

I want it to be said when I leave this world that 'he was not just a money-making machine.'

Tags: Leave, Machine, Said

If tomorrow the Chinese decide not to supply the world with raw materials, the pharma industry would collapse.

Tags: Decide, Industry, Tomorrow

My father never forced me, but chemistry was my best subject.

Tags: Best, Chemistry, Father

Reducing the price of cancer drugs is a humanitarian move.

Tags: Cancer, Move, Price

Cipla has already developed a generic version, oseltamivir, which would be much cheaper than Tamiflu, the only available drug effective in treating avian flu.

Tags: Available, Effective, Treating

I do believe anybody manufacturing products for healthcare cannot regard it truly as a 100 per cent business: it is business plus a humanitarian approach to society because you are saving lives. You are playing with people's lives.

Tags: Business, Cannot, Society

I had seen AIDS patients in India and Africa, and knowing that people were dying even though drugs existed that could help them was shattering for me.

Tags: Dying, Help, Knowing

If you look at the world's top 50 drugs being sold today, they are being marketed and sold by companies that did not invent them. I respect patents. I'll pay a royalty. But I shouldn't be denied the right to produce drugs for poor people at reasonable prices.

Tags: Poor, Respect, Today
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