Norman Mailer

((1923-2007) / Long Branch, New Jersey, United States)

Norman Mailer Quotes

  • ''I never saw love as luck, as that gift from the gods which put everything else in place, and allowed you to succeed. No, I saw love as reward. One could find it only after one's virtue, or one's courage, or self-sacrifice, or generosity, or loss, has succeeded in stirring the power of creation.''
    Norman Mailer (b. 1923), U.S. author. Harry Hubbard, in Harlot's Ghost, Omega 6, Random House (1991).
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  • ''On a late-winter evening in 1983, while driving through fog along the Maine coast, recollections of old campfires began to drift into the March mist, and I thought of the Abnaki Indians of the Algonquin tribe who dwelt near Bangor a thousand years ago.''
    Norman Mailer (b. 1923), U.S. author. Harry Hubbard, in Harlot's Ghost, Omega 1, Random House (1991). Opening sentence.
  • ''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.''
    Norman Mailer (b. 1923), U.S. author. repr. In Conversations with Norman Mailer, ed. J. Michael Lennon (1988). "Hip, Hell, and the Navigator," no. 23, Western Review (Winter 1959).
  • ''The final purpose of art is to intensify, even, if necessary, to exacerbate, the moral consciousness of people.''
    Norman Mailer (b. 1923), U.S. author. repr. In Conversations with Norman Mailer, ed. J. Michael Lennon (1988). "Hip, Hell, and the Navigator," Western Review, no. 23 (Winter 1959).
  • ''The sickness of our times for me has been just this damn thing that everything has been getting smaller and smaller and less and less important, that the romantic spirit has dried up, that there is no shame today.... We're all getting so mean and small and petty and ridiculous, and we all live under the threat of extermination.''
    Norman Mailer (b. 1923), U.S. author. repr. In Conversations with Norman Mailer, ed. J. Michael Lennon (1988). "Hip, Hell, and the Navigator," no. 23, Western Review (Winter 1959).
  • ''There is nothing safe about sex. There never will be.''
    Norman Mailer (b. 1923), U.S. author. International Herald Tribune (Paris, Jan. 24, 1992).
  • ''What if there are not only two nostrils, two eyes, two lobes, and so forth, but two psyches as well, and they are separately equipped? They go through life like Siamese twins inside one person.... They can be just a little different, like identical twins, or they can be vastly different, like good and evil.''
    Norman Mailer (b. 1923), U.S. author. Kittredge Gardiner, in Harlot's Ghost, Omega 5, Random House (1991). Description of Alpha-Omega personality theory.
  • ''He was a fool—a brilliant man and I loved his beard, and there was the mountain ax in his brain, and all the blood poured out, and he could not see the Mexican sun. Your people raised the ax, and the last blood of revolutionary mankind, his poor blood, ran into the carpet.''
    Norman Mailer (b. 1923), U.S. author. Lannie Madison, in Barbary Shore, ch. 21, Rinehart (1951). Description of the assassination of Leon Trotsky.
  • ''So we think of Marilyn who was every man's love affair with America. Marilyn Monroe who was blonde and beautiful and had a sweet little rinky-dink of a voice and all the cleanliness of all the clean American backyards.''
    Norman Mailer (b. 1923), U.S. author. Marilyn, ch. 1 (1973).

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