Susan Sontag

(1933-2004 / New York City, New York)

Susan Sontag Quotes

  • ''As photographs give people an imaginary possession of a past that is unreal, they also help people to take possession of space in which they are insecure.''
    Susan Sontag (b. 1933), U.S. author. On Photography, ch. 1 (1977).
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  • ''... [photographs] trade simultaneously on the prestige of art and the magic of the real.''
    Susan Sontag (b. 1933), U.S. author. On Photography, ch. 3 (1977).
  • ''So successful has been the camera's role in beautifying the world that photographs, rather than the world, have become the standard of the beautiful.''
    Susan Sontag (b. 1933), U.S. author. On Photography, ch. 4 (1977).
  • ''The photographer both loots and preserves, denounces and consecrates.''
    Susan Sontag (b. 1933), U.S. essayist. On Photography, "Melancholy Objects," (1977).
  • ''Mallarme said that everything in the world exists in order to end in a book. Today everything exists to end in a photograph.''
    Susan Sontag (b. 1933), U.S. author. On Photography, ch. 1 (1977). Stephane Mallarme (1842-1898) was a French poet.
  • ''To photograph is to confer importance.''
    Susan Sontag (b. 1933), U.S. author. On Photography, ch. 2 (1977).
  • ''... the most grandiose result of the photographic enterprise is to give us the sense that we can hold the whole world in our heads—as an anthology of images.''
    Susan Sontag (b. 1933), U.S. author. On Photography, ch. 1 (1977).
  • ''In the final analysis, "style" is art. And art is nothing more or less than various modes of stylized, dehumanized representation.''
    Susan Sontag (b. 1933), U.S. essayist. "On Style," Against Interpretation (1966).
  • ''Anthropology has always struggled with an intense, fascinated repulsion towards its subject.... [The anthropologist] submits himself to the exotic to confirm his own inner alienation as an urban intellectual.''
    Susan Sontag (b. 1933), U.S. essayist. Quoted in Neville Dyson-Hudson,"Structure and Infrastructure in Primitive Society," published in The Structuralist Controversy, eds. R. Macksey and E. Donato (1970).
  • ''I envy paranoids; they actually feel people are paying attention to them.''
    Susan Sontag (b. 1933), U.S. essayist. Quoted in Time Out (London, August 19, 1992).

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