José Ortega Y Gasset

(1883_1955 / Madrid)

José Ortega Y Gasset Quotes

  • ''Were art to redeem man, it could do so only by saving him from the seriousness of life and restoring him to an unexpected boyishness.''
    José Ortega Y Gasset (1883-1955), Spanish essayist, philosopher. "Art a Thing of No Consequence," The Dehumanization of Art (1925).
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  • ''Better beware of notions like genius and inspiration; they are a sort of magic wand and should be used sparingly by anybody who wants to see things clearly.''
    José Ortega Y Gasset (1883-1955), Spanish essayist, philosopher. "Decline of the Novel," Notes on the Novel (1925).
  • ''I do not deny that there may be other well-founded causes for the hatred which various classes feel toward politicians, but the main one seems to me that politicians are symbols of the fact that every class must take every other class into account.''
    José Ortega Y Gasset (1883-1955), Spanish essayist, philosopher. "Direct Action," ch. 2, Invertebrate Spain (1921).
  • ''Being an artist means ceasing to take seriously that very serious person we are when we are not an artist.''
    José Ortega Y Gasset (1883-1955), Spanish essayist, philosopher. "Doomed to Irony," The Dehumanization of Art (1925).
  • ''The essence of man is, discontent, divine discontent; a sort of love without a beloved, the ache we feel in a member we no longer have.''
    José Ortega Y Gasset (1883-1955), Spanish essayist, philosopher. "Historical Reason," no. 4 (Buenos Aires, Oct. 1940). Ortega first used this quote in a lecture given in 1916.
  • ''There is but one way left to save a classic: to give up revering him and use him for our own salvation.''
    José Ortega Y Gasset (1883-1955), Spanish essayist, philosopher. repr. In The Dehumanization of Art and Other Essays (1968). "In Search of Goethe from Within," Partisan Review (New Brunswick, Dec. 1949).
  • ''We do not live to think, but, on the contrary, we think in order that we may succeed in surviving.''
    José Ortega Y Gasset (1883-1955), Spanish essayist, philosopher. repr. In The Dehumanization of Art and Other Essays (1968). "In Search of Goethe from Within," Partisan Review (New Brunswick, N.J., Dec. 1949).
  • ''Poetry is adolescence fermented, and thus preserved.''
    José Ortega Y Gasset (1883-1955), Spanish essayist, philosopher. repr. In The Dehumanization of Art and Other Essays (1968). "In Search of Goethe from Within," Partisan Review (New Brunswick, New Jersey, December 1949).
  • ''Life is an operation which is done in a forward direction. One lives toward the future, because to live consists inexorably in doing, in each individual life making itself.''
    José Ortega Y Gasset (1883-1955), Spanish essayist, philosopher. repr. In The Dehumanization of Art and Other Essays (1968). "In Search of Goethe from Within," Partisan Review (New Brunswick, New Jersey, December 1949).
  • ''By speaking, by thinking, we undertake to clarify things, and that forces us to exacerbate them, dislocate them, schematize them. Every concept is in itself an exaggeration.''
    José Ortega Y Gasset (1883-1955), Spanish essayist, philosopher. repr. In The Dehumanization of Art and Other Essays (1968). "In Search of Goethe from Within," Partisan Review (New Brunswick, N.J., Dec. 1949).

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