Graham Greene

(1904-1991 / Berkhamsted)

Graham Greene Quotes

  • ''We are all of us resigned to death: it's life we aren't resigned to.''
    Graham Greene (1904-1991), British novelist. The Heart of the Matter, bk. 3, pt. 2, ch. 2, sct. 1 (1948).
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  • ''Against the beautiful and the clever and the successful, one can wage a pitiless war, but not against the unattractive: then the millstone weighs on the breast.''
    Graham Greene (1904-1991), British novelist. The Heart of the Matter, bk. 1, pt. 1, ch. 2, sct. 2 (1948).
  • ''Point me out the happy man and I will point you out either egotism, selfishness, evil—or else an absolute ignorance.''
    Graham Greene (1904-1991), British novelist. The Heart of the Matter, bk. 2, pt. 1, ch. 1, sect. 3 (1948).
  • ''A murderer is regarded by the conventional world as something almost monstrous, but a murderer to himself is only an ordinary man.... It is only if the murderer is a good man that he can be regarded as monstrous.''
    Graham Greene (1904-1991), British novelist. The Ministry of Fear, bk. 1, ch. 7, sct. 1 (1943).
  • ''It is impossible to go through life without trust: that is to be imprisoned in the worst cell of all, oneself.''
    Graham Greene (1904-1991), British novelist. The Ministry of Fear, bk. 1, ch. 3, sct. 2 (1943).
  • ''There is always one moment in childhood when the door opens and lets the future in.''
    Graham Greene (1901-1994), British author. The Power and the Glory, pt. 1, ch. 1 (1940).
  • ''There is always one moment in childhood when the door opens and lets the future in.''
    Graham Greene (1904-1991), British novelist. The Power and the Glory, pt. 1, ch. 1 (1940).
  • ''Innocence always calls mutely for protection when we would be so much wiser to guard ourselves against it: innocence is like a dumb leper who has lost his bell, wandering the world, meaning no harm.''
    Graham Greene (1904-1991), British novelist. The Quiet American, pt. 1, ch. 3, sct. 3 (1955). Later in the book, the narrator describes Pyle—"the quiet American" of the title, a fumbling idealist in Cold-War Vietnam—in similar terms: "What's the good? He'll always be innocent, you can't blame the innocent, they are always guiltless. All you can do is control them or eliminate them. Innocence is a kind of insanity." (pt. 3, ch. 2, sct. 1).
  • ''Innocence always calls mutely for protection when we would be so much wiser to guard ourselves against it: innocence is like a dumb leper who has lost his bell, wandering the world, meaning no harm.''
    Graham Greene (1904-1991), British novelist. The Quiet American, pt. 1, ch. 3, sct. 3 (1955). Later in the book, the narrator describes Pyle—"the quiet American" of the title, a fumbling idealist in Cold-War Vietnam—in similar terms: "What's the good? He'll always be innocent, you can't blame the innocent, they are always guiltless. All you can do is control them or eliminate them. Innocence is a kind of insanity." (pt. 3, ch. 2, sct. 1).
  • ''A petty reason perhaps why novelists more and more try to keep a distance from journalists is that novelists are trying to write the truth and journalists are trying to write fiction.''
    Graham Greene (1904-1991), British novelist. letter, Jan. 18, 1981, to critic Stephen Pile, Sunday Times (London). Yours, Etc: Letters to the Press, 1945-1989 (1989).

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