Best 85 of Edmund White quotes - MyQuotes

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Edmund White
By Anonym 15 Sep

Edmund White

When we are young... we often experience things in the present with a nostalgia-in-advance, but we seldom guess what we will truly prize years from now.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Edmund White

I think sincerity was my sole aesthetic and realism my experimental technique.

By Anonym 16 Sep

Edmund White

He was taking Kevin’s cherry! The words made him harder and made him feel privileged, masterful, married. He thought how many men would pay unlimited amounts to have this inaugurating experience with this boy. He didn’t want to feel like a middle-aged paedophile, he didn’t even want to think all this would make a good porn film. He wanted every thrust, every second, to be laden with tenderness, a salute from him to Kevin, a deep recognition. He wanted Kevin to like what was being done to him, to push back for another joyous millimetre of penetration. He didn’t want him to label it Guy’s First Fuck or Kevin’s First Time. He didn’t want the idea and the label to crowd out the sensation or to sharpen it; he wanted it to be pure sex, undramatised.

By Anonym 16 Sep

Edmund White

If a writer has the desire to communicate by writing and be heard, then he necessarily cares about seeing it in print. I suppose it's the difference between masturbation and making love—the real writer wants to touch another person.

By Anonym 18 Sep

Edmund White

Teenagers, flooded with destabilizing hormones and a longing for elsewhere, are particularly prone to the seductive power of dark narratives.

By Anonym 19 Sep

Edmund White

What did they say about Helen of Troy? That her face launched a thousand ships? That’s you, you’re that beautiful. A thousand ships.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Edmund White

Marie Calloway has a very specific literary personality that the reader is intrigued by: she's masochistic, loves to experiment, is quickly bored and intermittently self-hating, very hip, rebellious. Figuring her out is a gripping adventure.

By Anonym 16 Sep

Edmund White

Guy’s own erection was so hard it ached, as if it were an angry dog begging to be let out and pawing at the door.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Edmund White

Perhaps I became so vague, so exhilarated with vagueness, precisely in order to forestall a recognition of the final term of the syllogism that begins: If one man loves another he is a homosexual; I love a man.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Edmund White

Being up on something is a way of dismissing it. To espouse any point of view is a danger - it might leave us stuck with last year's cause. Prized for their novelty alone, ideas, gimmicks, trends become equivalent, interchangeable.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Edmund White

At certain crucial moments - an emergency or an opportunity - one must act first and think later.

By Anonym 19 Sep

Edmund White

They all said the way to a man’s heart was through his asshole.

By Anonym 16 Sep

Edmund White

Gay life is this object out there that’s waiting to be written about. A lot of people think we’ve exhausted all the themes of gay fiction, but we’ve just barely touched on them.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Edmund White

Tennessee Williams recognized that great theater begins with great talkers, and that great talkers obey two rules: they never sound like anyone else and they never say anything directly.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Edmund White

There was something stubborn in me that didn't want to lose weight to attract a man. If the right man came along, he'd be able to see my virtues magically. Once he kissed me, the frog would turn into a prince. I had become a trick question, a heavy disguise, but behind the disobliging exterior was the welcoming child I would always be. Of course, what I'd forgotten was that he was not Parsifal and I was not the Grail; the medievalism of my imagination was not sufficiently up-to-date to recognize that the lover was a shopper and I a product.

By Anonym 16 Sep

Edmund White

Guy suddenly wanted to scald his face, gain fifty pounds, shear his hair. He was sick of his beauty, his “eternal” beauty. People thought he was purer, more intelligent, kinder, nobler than he was because they ascribed all these virtues to him. What if he were stripped of his looks, if he stabbed the grotesque painting in the attic? If they saw him for what he really was – empty-headed, vicieux (how did you translate that? “Riddled with vices?”), narcisse? Used to being indulged and pursued, terrified he’d outlive his fatal appeal and yet longing to be free of it?

By Anonym 17 Sep

Edmund White

Now, that’s what you call a vicious French queen. I never discussed your penis size – ” “Bet you did,” Kevin said, “at the beginning. I’ve heard the way gay guys talk at the gym. Nothing’s sacred. Not even my poor little penis.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Edmund White

Hell is God's Absence.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Edmund White

What is new about Barthes's posthumous reputation is the view of him as a writer whose books of criticism and personal musings must be admired as serious and beautiful works of the imagination.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Edmund White

I didn't want to write a biographie romancee especially since I already write novels, nor did I want to challenge the rules of the biography game, arbitrary as those rules might be

By Anonym 16 Sep

Edmund White

A middle-aged man who’s probably down to jerking off every other day. A weary man of forty who’s already seen everything come around twice, who let me fuck him that once in a hole where whole armies of men have doubtless passed.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Edmund White

Paris... is a world meant for the walker alone, for only the pace of strolling can take in all the rich (if muted) detail.

By Anonym 16 Sep

Edmund White

In the 1970s in New York everyone slept till noon.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Edmund White

Biography can be the most middle-class of all forms, the judgment of little people avenging themselves on the great.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Edmund White

The imagination is not the consolation people pretend. It can even be regarded as the admission of some sort of failure.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Edmund White

The school was nothing but reminiscence - of an Italian hill town, a French abbey, an English academy, the different sources improbably but convincingly melded into a fantasy about the classic sites of Europe as imagined by exiles from cold peripheral lands, nostalgia about somebody else's past.

By Anonym 16 Sep

Edmund White

In America everyone called the merest acquaintance a ‘friend’ – Guy had taken up the habit. It made him feel better about not having any real friends.

By Anonym 16 Sep

Edmund White

I’ve always associated reading and writing with sex.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Edmund White

The almost Oriental politeness of the West Coast is one of its distinctive regional features, in marked contrast to the contentiousness of the East Coast.... So few human contacts in Los Angeles go unmediated by glass (either a TV screen or an automobile windshield), that the direct confrontation renders the participants docile, stunned, sweet.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Edmund White

Charles used to say, “If God had meant boys to be fucked, he would have put a hole in their ass.

By Anonym 17 Sep

Edmund White

Nor did Kevin go, “Ew-w,” when he pulled his penis out and it was brown and smelly, and that, too, Guy considered a rite de passage.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Edmund White

Psychoanalysis feeds on intensity, as though life were all flame and no ash.

By Anonym 20 Sep

Edmund White

When history gives out, fiction takes over.

By Anonym 20 Sep

Edmund White

Young people dislike and even fail to understand our slang; my gay students ask me what “tricking” means. It’s all old whore’s slang, of course.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Edmund White

I am, I must confess, suspicious of those who denounce others for having too much sex. At what point does a healthy amount become too much? There are, of course, those who suffer because their desire for sex has become compulsive; in their case the drive (loneliness, guilt) is at fault, not the activity as such. When morality is discussed I invariably discover, halfway into the conversation, that what is meant are not the great ethical questions but the rather dreary business of sexual habit, which to my mind is an aesthetic rather than an ethical issue.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Edmund White

In our imaginations the adults of our childhood remain extreme, essential - we might say radical since they are the roots that fed luxuriant later systems. Those first bohemians, for instance, stay operatic in memory even though were we to meet them today - well, what would we think, we who've elaborated our eccentricities with a patience, a professionalism they never knew?

By Anonym 17 Sep

Edmund White

Older guys have too much emotional baggage. They’ve already lived their lives.

By Anonym 19 Sep

Edmund White

Was a glimpse of his cock worth a Mercedes?

By Anonym 16 Sep

Edmund White

He thought to himself, I’ll never be this perfect again, an idea that made him sad.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Edmund White

These rejections hurt me terribly because I felt it was my life that was being rejected.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Edmund White

I saw literature as a fantasy, no less absorbing for all its irrelevance - a parallel life, as dreams shadow waking but never intersect it.

By Anonym 16 Sep

Edmund White

It was a grungy, dangerous, bankrupt city without normal services most of the time. The garbage piled up and stank during long strikes of the sanitation workers. A major blackout led to days and days of looting. We gay guys wore whistles around our necks so we could summon help from other gay men when we were attacked on the streets by gangs living in the projects between Greenwich Village and the West Side leather bars...The upside was that the city was inexpensive…

By Anonym 16 Sep

Edmund White

If the baron is a masochist himself, then why would he attract another masochist? I suppose he wants someone cute to attract other sadists.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Edmund White

There is an enormous pressure placed on gay novelists because they are the only spokespeople. The novelist's first obligation is to be true to his own vision, not to be some sort of common denominator or public relations man to all gay people.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Edmund White

How thrilling to discover one had depths, how consoling to find them less polluted than the shallows, how encouraging to identify the enemy not as a fissure in the will but as a dead fetus in the specimen jar of the unconscious. My attention was being paternally led away from the excruciating present to the happy, healthy future that would be enabled by an analysis of the sick past, as though the priest had nothing to do but study old books and make bright forecasts, the present not worthy of notice.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Edmund White

All his leisure clothes were absurd - jokes, really - as though leisure itself had to be ridiculed.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Edmund White

Recognizing that the world is governed by a minority, the sexually active, and that they hold sway of a huge majority of the nonsexual, those people too young or too old or too poor or too homely or sick or crazy or powerless to be able to afford sexual partners (or the luxury of systematic, sustained and shared introspection, so sexual in its own way). All advertisements and films and songs are addressed to sexuals, to their rash whims and finicky tastes.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Edmund White

The most important things in our intimate lives can't be discussed with strangers, except in books.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Edmund White

I felt if I went chronologically, I'd get bogged down in childhood and that's part of our culture of complaint in America. This endless wailing about your childhood.

By Anonym 16 Sep

Edmund White

He looked out over the shirtless, muscled, tanned men and realised that right here, on this disco floor, there was such a concentration of fashion, slimming, money, bleaching, plastic surgery, psychotherapy – and all for naught. In a few years they’d all be old walruses, and in a few more, dead.