André Gide quotes

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André Gide

Birthdate: 22. November 1869
Date of death: 19. February 1951
Other names: André Paul Guillaume Gide

André Paul Guillaume Gide was a French author and winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1947 "for his comprehensive and artistically significant writings, in which human problems and conditions have been presented with a fearless love of truth and keen psychological insight". Gide's career ranged from its beginnings in the symbolist movement, to the advent of anticolonialism between the two World Wars.

Known for his fiction as well as his autobiographical works, Gide exposes to public view the conflict and eventual reconciliation of the two sides of his personality, split apart by a straitlaced traducing of education and a narrow social moralism. Gide's work can be seen as an investigation of freedom and empowerment in the face of moralistic and puritanical constraints, and centres on his continuous effort to achieve intellectual honesty. His self-exploratory texts reflect his search of how to be fully oneself, even to the point of owning one's sexual nature, without at the same time betraying one's values. His political activity is informed by the same ethos, as indicated by his repudiation of communism after his 1936 voyage to the USSR.

Photo: Ottoline Morrell (1873-1938) / Public domain

Works

„It is better to be hated for what you are than to be loved for what you are not.“

—  André Gide

Frequently misattributed to Marilyn Monroe or Kurt Cobain.
Source: https://books.google.com/books?id=xUtdDnEhkMMC&pg=PT12&lpg=PT12#v=onepage&q&f=false
Source: Autumn Leaves, Philosophical eLibrary, 2012, (Feuillets d'automne, 1941, trans. Jeanine Parisier Plottel)

„I have my own virtue, which I am constantly cultivating and refining by teaching myself not to tolerate in me or my surroundings anything but the exquisite.“

—  André Gide

Maurice in “Characters,” p. 298
Pretexts: Reflections on Literature and Morality (1964)
Context: In my present insistence on high standards you will see that there is less self-indulgence than resolve and application. I do not let the Christian monopolize the ideal of perfection. I have my own virtue, which I am constantly cultivating and refining by teaching myself not to tolerate in me or my surroundings anything but the exquisite.

„Everything has been said before, but since nobody listens we have to keep going back and beginning all over again.“

—  André Gide

Toutes choses sont dites déjà; mais comme personne n'écoute, il faut toujours recommencer.
Le Traité du Narcisse https://fr.wikisource.org/wiki/Le_Trait%C3%A9_du_narcisse (The Treatise of the Narcissus)
Nothing is said that has not been said before. -- Terence

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„One doesn't discover new lands without consenting to lose sight, for a very long time, of the shore.“

—  André Gide, book The Counterfeiters

On ne découvre pas de terre nouvelle sans consentir à perdre de vue, d'abord et longtemps, tout rivage.
Often misquoted as "Man cannot discover new oceans unless he has the courage to lose sight of the shore."
Frequently misattributed to Christopher Columbus.
Variant: Man cannot discover new oceans unless he has the courage to lose sight of the shore.
Source: Les faux-monnayeurs [The Counterfeiters] (1925)

„Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam egestas wisi a erat. Morbi imperdiet, mauris ac auctor dictum.“

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