Biographies Quotes by Tim Hansel, Theodor Haecker, Clara Barton, Charles Darwin, Claire Tomalin, Joseph Brodsky and many others.
Always live your
life with your biography in mind.
are interesting because they are the only
people who can write a biography and an autobiography at the same time
I had to do the book
because there was an unauthorised biography which didn’t tell it like it was.
Behind each biography there should always be a rich treasury
of unformulated knowledge, a tapestry
that has not been unrolled.
There’s no biography so interesting as the one in which the biographer is present
Those who have no record
of what their forebears have accomplished lose
the inspiration which comes from the teaching of biography and history.
When I was younger, when I was at school, I did read a lot of fiction. I think as you get older perhaps
and biographies and things like that. I think it’s just important
to just read as much as you can.
Read. Read. Read. Read. Read great books. Read poetry
, history, biography. Read the novels that have stood the test
of time. And read closely
The facts of a person’s life will, like murder
, come out.
I can find my biography in every fable
that I read.
Biography is one of the new terrors of death.
Inthehistorian’sview biography isa kindoffrogspawn it takes
biographies to make one small history.
Biography is history seen
through the prism
of a person.
I read a lot. I especially read memoirs and biographies. It’s very helpful
when you’re thinking about what’s possible
and what exists in human behavior
; if it exists out there then it can exist
on the stage
. I really try
to go to a lot of concerts
. A lot of live events
. I just try to keep my ears
really, really open
I’ve always been a person that thinks nonfiction
is more interesting than fiction, I love to read presidential
A form of art that I like is portraiture
. I’ve been thinking about portraiture, and its relationship
to writing and literature, biography and autobiography, and so that will be my next
My first biography written in ’73 was not ‘Journey To The Moon
.’ It was ‘Return
To Earth.’ Because for me, that was the more difficult task
Biography lends to death a new terror
But a lot of times, people die how they live. And so last words
tell me a lot about who people were, and why
the sort of people biographies get written about.
Biography is the best form of history.
A life that is worth writing at all is worth writing minutely.
Biographies of me have usually been compiled from old newspaper
clips, untruthful publicity
stories, and reminiscences of people who claim to have known me well.
When I was younger I only read sports books. I loved the biographies that told how athletes developed
. When I got
, I did start
to read more instructional books, but I was always more interested in the people behind the ideas
An autobiography is only ‘a sort of life’ – it may contain
less errors of fact than a biography, but it is of necessity
even more selective
: it begins later
and it ends prematurely.
Almost any biographer, if he respects
facts, can give us much more than another fact to add to our collection
. He can give us the creative
fact; the fertile
fact; the fact that suggests and engenders.
There are two classes
: the one write the history of their times, the other their biography.
I have had the unfortunate experience of having someone write an unauthorised biography of me. Half of it is lies and the other half
written. My feeling is that if I’m going to write my life story
, I ought to have my life first.
Every novel is a biography. Well, then, this is a novel [The Paper Men] which is a biography that is pretending
to be an autobiography. That’s what you could say about it.
I always use primary sources, in addition to reading biographies and other materials
At the Sex Institute
in Bloomington, Indiana
, they were a phenomenal
help, too. We went out there for a few days, and they gave us access to materials. And the biographies, there are four
or five, ranging from very poor
It is impossible
that historical Jesus
research is a very safe
place to do theology and call it history, to do autobiography and call it biography.
It is also one of the pleasures
of oral biography, in that the reader, rather than editor
, is jury
I will read biographies or autobiographies while I’m writing, but mostly I put books in a to-read queue
, like Rachel Cusk’s new novel, “Outline
When I read biographies, I’m only interested in the first few chapters
. I’m not interested
in when people become successful. I’m interested in what made them successful.
I’ve been a lifelong horror
fan, but at the same time, I would say 90 percent
of my reading is biographies and nonfiction history.
[On writing biography:] If you wish
to see a person you must not start by seeing
Biographies by preachers are of no value. If they admire
a man they always make him a saint
, while if they dislike
one, they always make him a demon.
I see myself as writing biographies, the complete
story of someone’s life.
We do not learn
much from learned books, but from true
, human books, from frank and honest
Biographies never feel as real as the best fiction. There is such a discontinuity
between the narrative and the material it comes from, which is always such a mixed bag
, recollections, and other data.
The biographies of the great men see their excesses as signs
of their greatness.
All history is biography.
I very rarely read any fiction. I love biographies; I read about all kinds
of people. I love theology and some philosophy.
Young man, if I could remember the names
of these particles
, I would have been a botanist.
I started out as a writer of fiction, but nobody wanted to publish
my work as a young man
. So I decided
to put my interest in the narrative writing of biographies.
I am trying
to make clear
through my writing something which I believe: that biography- history in general- can be literature in the deepest
and highest sense
of that term
I have not much interest in anyone’s personal history
after the tenth
year, not even my own. Whatever one was going to be was all prepared
When you read a history or biography you are entitled
to imagine that
it is as accurate as the authors can make it. That research has gone
into it and we say “This is a history of the civil
war, this is a biography of Lincoln” whatever
. But you don’t make any such supposition
when you say “This is a historical novel.”
I wish I had my beta-blockers handy
Tycho, we’re about to achieve a tremendous victory
we don’t want.” “We’ll put that in your biography. General Antilles was so good he couldn’t fail when he tried to.” “Thanks
I’m getting very sorry
for the Devil and his disciples such as the good Le Chiffre. The devil
has a rotten
time and I always like to be on the side
of the underdog
. We don’t give the poor chap a chance…the Devil had no prophets
to write his Ten Commandments
and no team
of authors to write his biography.
A woman’s biography – with about eight famous
– so often turns out to be the story of a man and the woman who helped
biography cannot be separated
from autobiography: that is, the life written about is inextricably entangled
with the life of the biographer.
[FlГјrscheim] was good at unanswerable arguments.
Many heroes lived before Agamemnon
; but all are unknown and unwept, extinguished in everlasting
night, because they have no spirited
After a certain
number of years, our faces
become our biographies.
When I was growing
up, I read Britney Spears
‘ and Mariah Carey’s biographies. I just wanted to see how they did it because I was so eager
to get into the biz.
did give me
a lot of books – biographies of Marie
Curie – and I did read them, because I was interested.
Biography is the only true history.
I’m not fond
of biographies. I don’t like writing about myself.
I am a total sucker
for an actor
‘s autobiography/biography. I have probably read most of them.
There’s been a number of erroneous biographies, articles
and so on written about Billy
and we both thought it would be a good idea
a true one.
Since my mother is the type
that’s called schizophrenogenic in the literature-she’s the one who makes crazy people
, crazy children-I was awfully curious
to find out why I didn’t go insane.
There is properly
no history, only biography.
In the late 1990s, I left the teaching field
to write biographies and histories for young adults
Most people when they have autobiographies, they’re not autobiographies, they’re biographies written by a ghost
Why do we read biography? Why do we choose to write it? Because we are human beings, programmed
to be curious about other human beings, and to experience something of their lives. This has always been so – look at the Bible, crammed with biographies, very popular
There won’t be any biographies of me because, for only one reason, lives spent between the house and the chicken yard
do not make exciting copy
Of all the events which constitute
a person’s biography, there is scarcely
one … to which the world so easily reconciles itself
as to his death.
I don’t think of my books as being biographies. I never had any interest in doing a book just to write the life of a great man. I had zero
interest in that. My interest is in power. How power works.
of reading biography: Most great men have led lives even more miserable than our own.
me… so I enjoy women’s stories and biographies. I am interested in all women
There is no history; only biography.
We had all these famous writers
and from all over the world home at dinner
. I wanted to be a writer, and I wanted to be a highbrow writer as my father. He never, ever read anything like crime
novels. He wrote biographies of Dante, James Joyce
, August Strindberg and Joseph
I did a lot before [being cast
] because I knew how important it would be for playing
somebody real, or attempting
to – to show the team [the role] was something I would be fascinated to do. I read a couple
of biographies and I watched
everything I could find [about princess
I don’t want to do the type of writing where I recite
biography, parentage and education
. I want to rise
up from the words on the page and do something, hurt
If you’re doing a biography, you try to stay
as accurate as possible to reality. But you really don’t know what was going on in the person’s mind. You just know what was going on in the minds of people around him.
If all history is only an amplification
of biography, the history of science
may be most instructively read in the life and work of the men by whom the realms
of Nature have been successively won.
Always live your life
with your biography in mind,” Dad was fond of saying. “Naturally
, it won’t be published
unless you have a Magnificent Reason, but at the very least you will be living grandly.
I love memoirs and biographies, learning
about other people’s lives. Two of the ones that I loved so much were actually edited
by the same person who edited my book, too. I loved ‘Angela
.’ I loved ‘Glass Castle
‘ so much.
We’re all story-telling creatures
, and also I think that’s the point
about biography because the life is exemplary
All of our theology must eventually
People are interested in people. They buy
biographies; they don’t buy studies
The aim of science is to discover and illuminate
truth. And that, I take it, is the aim of literature, whether biography or history or fiction. It seems to me, then, that there can be no separate
literature of science.
Your biography becomes your biology
I didn’t want to write a biographie romancee especially since I already write novels, nor did I want to challenge
of the biography game
as those rules might be
There is no real escape
from autobiography into biography. The self has to be faced
, or we die.
at his work. That’s what work’s for. Why do you think they have the SILENCE notices
in the library? So as not to disturb
me in my little nook
behind the biography shelves.
All Philosophy is Biography
Find a great role model
, perhaps someone who struggled
and only really succeeded
when older. Their biography and what they’ve done differently
from you will help you. If such a person is willing to mentor
you or at least allow
you to work around them, great.
Women are defined
by their biography, and men are sacrosanct from their biography.
I wanted to be a poet when I was 20; I had no interest
in fiction or biography and precious
little interest in history, but those three elements
in my life have become the most important.
It’s a feature of our age that if you write a work of fiction, everyone assumes that the people and events in it are disguised
biography вЂ” but if you write your biography, it’s equally assumed
What use is there for a biography of myself? I’m just a movie
I am not a historian
. I don’t see what I do as being a rival
What would become of all historical biography if it was written only with consideration
for other peoples’ feelings?
is a poignant
biography of a forgotten
man who drank
himself to death. It’s a brilliant evocation of a self-hating gay novelist in the 1940s whom Gore
Vidal once considered a rival.
Carlyle uttered a pregnant
truth when he said that the history of any country is in the biographies of the men who made it
I would recommend you watch
the movie ‘Jobs
‘ starring Ashton Kutcher, if you don’t have time to read Jobs’s biography.
I’ve published many biographies over the years and enjoyed
working with writers on their research, discussing
it, thinking about it and how it revealed their subject
– and one day the impulse
came to me to write a life of someone. I made a long list
of possible subjects and [ Barbara
] Stanwyck was on the list.
For what is a poem
but a hazardous
attempt at self-understanding: it is the deepest part of autobiography.
Why should I be limited
by my own biography?
Sir Humphrey Davy Abominated gravy
. He lived in the odium Of having discovered sodium
. Said to have been written as a schoolboy
during a chemistry class at St. Paul
Live your life as if you are writing your Biography.
I am a huge admirer
of Elizabeth I, and this intriguing
biography gives a wonderful picture of the era
Great geniuses have the shortest biographies.
People think that because a novel’s invented, it isn’t true. Exactly the reverse
is the case. Biography and memoirs can never be wholly true, since they cannot include
every conceivable circumstance of what happened. The novel can do that.
I’m writing my biography. It’s my business. This is what happened in my life, and I’m writing about it.
I’ve always enjoyed reading history
, particularly presidential biographies.
With poets, the choice
of words is invariably more telling than the story line
; that’s why the best of them dread
the thought of their biographies being written.
When I was 8 years old, I made my own encyclopedia
of American biography – Johnny Appleseed
, Jim Bowie
, Davy Crockett, Daniel
Boone, Charles Lindbergh, my pantheon
of favorite heroes. Then I would write my own things and sew
them together and try to make my own book.
Almost any biography will have its useful suggestions
for making life a success, but none better or more unfailing than the biography of Christ.
It can be a long gap
between the emergence
of fully researched historical biographies.
On the whole, most biographies about literary
to diagnose them.
I think that every so-called
history book and film
biography should be prefaced by the statement
that what follows is the author’s rendition
of events and circumstances.
All fiction is lies вЂ“ if it werenвЂ™t, it would be biography, history, or reportage.
, if a writer really gets her hooks
into me, I’ll want to read interviews, or listen to an interview, or read a literary biography or a memoir
of some kind. And doing so almost always deepens my enjoyment
of the author and her work.
Davy was the type of all the jumped-up second-raters of all time
I just love biography, and I’m fascinated by people who have shifted
our destinies or our points of view
I do not think that one is likely to write a good biography unless one feels
with its subject.
I would love to do an unauthorized biography about Congress. It’s like a secret society
For me writing biographies is impossible, unless they are brief
, and these are, I feel, the most eloquent