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I wanted to hold onto and exploit the power of narrative.
by Stephen Greenblatt

I wanted to hold onto and exploit the power of narrative.
This is not only a book about a great storyteller,
but there have to be stories about the storyteller.
- Stephen Greenblatt

I think the writing of literature should give pleasure.
What else should it be about? It is not nuclear physics.
It actually has to give pleasure or it is worth nothing.
- Stephen Greenblatt

What I wanted to do was to get that sense of being
in touch with this lost world while holding onto what
draws readers and audiences there in the first place.
- Stephen Greenblatt

I believe that nothing comes of nothing,
even in Shakespeare.
I wanted to know where he got the matter he was working
with and what he did with that matter.
- Stephen Greenblatt

 

But I never listen to music while I'm writing.
- Stephen Greenblatt

What we know is that Shakespeare wrote perhaps the
most remarkable body of passionate love poetry in the
English language to a young man.
- Stephen Greenblatt

No special writing rituals.
And my desk is usually cluttered.
- Stephen Greenblatt

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Now a Protestant confronting a Catholic ghost is exactly
Shakespeare's way of grappling with what was not simply
a general social problem but one lived out in his own life.
- Stephen Greenblatt

First of all, Shakespeare is about pleasure and interest.
He was from the first moment he actually wrote something for the stage,
and he remains so.
- Stephen Greenblatt

The Shakespeare that Shakespeare became is the name
that's attached to these astonishing objects that he left behind.
- Stephen Greenblatt

I believe that it is a whole lifetime of work on Shakespeare's
part that enabled him to do what he did.
But the question is how you can explain this whole
lifetime in such a way to make it accessible and available to us,
to me.
- Stephen Greenblatt

It is not that Shakespeare's art is in technicolor and fancy,
and that real life is black and white and tedious.
The life that Shakespeare was living was the only life he had,
and he had to use it to create what he was doing.
- Stephen Greenblatt

But if Shakespeare himself is maybe about meaning and truth,
I don't know, then he is certainly about pleasure and interest,
we start with pleasure and interest,
but maybe eventually it gets to meaning and truth.
- Stephen Greenblatt

My father who in this case was an obsessive life-long storyteller,
and by a very peculiar trick of my father's.
My father would tell a very, very long story,
and the punch line would be in Yiddish.
- Stephen Greenblatt

Well it is certainly the case that the poems -
which were in fact published during Shakespeare's lifetime -
are weird if they began or originated in this form,
as I think they did, because the poems get out of control.
- Stephen Greenblatt

First of all, there was a volcano of words,
an eruption of words that Shakespeare had never used
before that had never been used in the English language before.
It's astonishing.
It pours out of him.
- Stephen Greenblatt

I've been at this for 40 years.
And, as an academic, I've been content with relatively small audiences,
with the thought that the audience I long for will
find its way eventually to what I have written,
provided that what I have written is good enough.
- Stephen Greenblatt

What matters here are the works - finally without them
his life would be uninteresting.
What matters, that is, are the astonishing things that he left behind.
If we can get the life in relation to the works,
then it can take off.
- Stephen Greenblatt

I'm not spitting in my own soup, I love having spent
my life thinking about these things-but you don't have
to know anything about his life,
even though I've just written a biography!
- Stephen Greenblatt

I believe in broken, fractured, complicated narratives,
but I believe in narratives as a vehicle for truth,
not simply as a form of entertainment,
though I love entertainment, but also a way of conveying
what needs to be conveyed about the works that I care about.
- Stephen Greenblatt

Even the rich are hungry for love,
for being cared for, for being wanted,
for having someone to call their own.
- Mother Teresa

A somebody was once a nobody who wanted to and did.
- John Burroughs

Sometimes you get the results you wanted,
sometimes you don't.
What matters is that you did your best.
- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

In all our contacts, it is probably the sense
of being really needed and wanted
which gives us the greatest satisfaction
and creates the most lasting bond.
- Eleanor Roosevelt

Piglet sidled up to Pooh from behind. "Pooh?" he whispered.
"Yes, Piglet?"
"Nothing," said Piglet, taking Pooh's hand.
"I just wanted to be sure of you."
- A. A. Milne (Winnie-The-Pooh)

There's sometimes a weird benefit to having an alcoholic,
violent father.
He really motivated me in that I never wanted to be anything like him.
- Dean Koontz

If God wanted us to fly, He would have given us tickets.
- Mel Brooks

I wanted to be with the kind of people I'd grown up with,
but you can't go back to them and be one of them again,
no matter how hard you try.
- Ethel Waters

In my prayers I never said I needed a home.
I said I wanted a sanctuary.
- Mary Anne Radmacher

I always wanted to be somebody, but now I realize I
should have been more specific.
- Lily Tomlin

I decided I wanted to be a lawyer when I was 11 years of age.
- Johnnie Cochran

Designers are very fickle.
I never wanted to be a victim of that.
You're in one minute, out the next.
- Tyra Banks

I wanted to take up music, so my father bought me a blunt instrument.
He told me to knock myself out.
- Jay London

Love cannot endure indifference.
It needs to be wanted.
Like a lamp, it needs to be fed out of the oil of another's heart,
or its flame burns low.
- Henry Ward Beecher

If God wanted us to bend over he'd put diamonds on the floor.
- Joan Rivers

I would never have done what I'd done if I'd considered
my father as somebody I wanted to please.
- Robert Mapplethorpe

I wanted to buy a candle holder, but the store didn't have one.
So I got a cake.
- Mitch Hedberg

I always imagined I could be what I wanted to be.
- Chris Brown

I wanted to know the name of every stone
and flower and insect and bird and beast.
I wanted to know where it got its color, where it got its life -
but there was no one to tell me.
- George Washington Carver

After fifteen minutes I wanted to marry her,
and after half an hour
I completely gave up the idea of stealing her purse.
- the movie Take the Money and Run (1969)

My mother asked me what I wanted for my birthday,
so I said I wanted to read poetry with her.
- Guy Johnson

I wanted to be a forest ranger or a coal man.
At a very early age, I knew I didn't want to do what my dad did,
which was work in an office.
- Harrison Ford

I wanted to see exotic Vietnam, the jewel of Southeast Asia.
I, uh, I wanted to meet interesting
and stimulating people of an ancient culture,
and kill them.
- the movie Full Metal Jacket

I wish my mother had left me something about how she felt growing up.
I wish my grandmother had done the same.
I wanted my girls to know me.
- Carol Burnett

Both my mother and father were very supportive of any
career move any of us wanted to make.
- James Gandolfini

My boyfriend and I broke up.
He wanted to get married and I didn't want him to.
- Rita Rudner

Secretly, I wanted to look like Jimi Hendrix,
but I could never quite pull it off.
- Bryan Ferry

Today is the right day to do
what you have long wanted to do.
- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

Wanted: a needle swift enough to sew this poem into a blanket.
- Charles Simic

I realized my family was funny, because nobody ever
wanted to leave our house.
- Anthony Anderson

I wanted to escape so badly.
But of course I knew I couldn't just give up and leave school.
It was only when I heard my mom's voice that I came out of my hiding place.
- Zhang Ziyi

This is a wonderful way to celebrate an 80th birthday...
I wanted to be 65 again, but they wouldn't let me -
Homeland Security.
- Art Buchwald

Earth Day 1970 was irrefutable evidence that the American
people understood the environmental threat and wanted action to resolve it.
- Barry Commoner

Making duplicate copies and computer printouts of things
no one wanted even one of in the first place is giving
America a new sense of purpose.
- Andy Rooney

I have often wanted to drown my troubles,
but I can't get my wife to go swimming.
- Anonymous

I drank some boiling water because I wanted to whistle.
- Mitch Hedberg

Growing up, I wanted desperately to please,
to be a good girl.
- Claire Danes

My love of fine art increased - the more of it I saw,
the more of it I wanted to see.
- Paul Getty

I wanted to marry a girl just like my mom.
- Michael Bergin

My senior year I was basically supporting myself,
so it was like, Do you want to eat and pay the rent,
or do you want to go to school? I wanted to eat and pay the rent.
- Clea Duvall

Obviously I always wanted to do a contemporary piece.
- Orlando Bloom

I've always wanted to sing, just as I've always known
that one day I would have my own niche in the annals of song.
It was a feeling I had.
- Edith Piaf

Lacey said if he wanted to read a daily or regular
critiques of the Bush administration,
he would read the New York Times, and that's not what
he wanted in the Village Voice.
- Sydney Schanberg

When I wanted to be an actress, I never wanted really
to be the kind of actress I became.
- Rachel Ward

I think every parent, every generation has wanted their
children to do better and have a higher standard of living.
But I think there's too much guilt.
- Phil McGraw

I had to audition for the part of Jnior,
and I wanted the role terribly because I knew it was a great character.
This guy is a wonderful, funny, mean old guy.
- Dominic Chianese

I found through my fan mail that women...
really wanted a role model.
- Donna Mills

I went away when I was 9 to a ballet school.
I thought I wanted to be a dancer, but eight years
of ballet cured me of that.
- Juliet Mills

All I wanted to do was ride skateboards -
I wanted to be a professional skateboarder.
But I had this problem.
I kept breaking half of my body skateboarding.
- Travis Barker

I wanted to be a scientist.
But I had no math skills.
- Terri Windling

I had the notion that I wanted to write the great dirty American novel,
so I went to Roanoke College on the GI Bill.
- Tom T. Hall


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- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

 


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