Quotes about freedom

A collection of quotes on the topic of freedom.

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Andrzej Majewski photo

„A slave dreams of freedom, a free man dreams of wealth, the wealthy dream of power, and the powerful dream of freedom.“

—  Andrzej Majewski Polish writer and photographer 1966

Niewolnik marzy o wolności, człowiek wolny o bogactwie, bogacz o władzy, a władca o wolności.
Aphorisms. Magnum in Parvo (2000)

Vladimir Lenin photo

„Nobody is to be blamed for being born a slave; but a slave who not only eschews a striving for freedom but justifies and eulogies his slavery“

—  Vladimir Lenin Russian politician, led the October Revolution 1870 - 1924

The War and Russian Social-Democracy (September 1917), The Lenin Anthology
1910s
Context: Nobody is to be blamed for being born a slave; but a slave who not only eschews a striving for freedom but justifies and eulogies his slavery (e. g., calls the throttling of Poland and the Ukraine, etc., a "defense of the fatherland" of the Great Russians") - such a slave is a lickspittle and a boor, who arouses a legitimate feeling of indignation, contempt, and loathing.

Vladimir Lenin photo
Vladimir Lenin photo

„In capitalist society, providing it develops under the most favorable conditions, we have a more or less complete democracy in the democratic republic. But this democracy is always hemmed in by the narrow limits set by capitalist exploitation and consequently always remains, in effect, a democracy for the minority, only for the propertied classes, only for the rich. Freedom in capitalist society always remains about the same as it was in the ancient Greek republics: freedom for the slaveowners. Owing to the conditions of capitalist exploitation, the modern wage slaves are so crushed by want and poverty that “they cannot be bothered with democracy,” “cannot be bothered with politics”; in the ordinary, peaceful course of events, the majority of the population is debarred from participation in public and political life. The“

—  Vladimir Lenin Russian politician, led the October Revolution 1870 - 1924

Source: The State and Revolution (1917), Ch. 5
Context: Democracy for an insignificant minority, democracy for the rich – that is the democracy of capitalist society. If we look more closely into the machinery of capitalist democracy, we see everywhere, in the "petty" – supposedly petty – details of the suffrage (residential qualifications, exclusion of women, etc.), in the technique of the representative institutions, in the actual obstacles to the right of assembly (public buildings are not for "paupers"!), in the purely capitalist organization of the daily press, etc., etc., – we see restriction after restriction upon democracy. These restrictions, exceptions, exclusions, obstacles for the poor seem slight, especially in the eyes of one who has never known want himself and has never been in close contact with the oppressed classes in their mass life (and nine out of 10, if not 99 out of 100, bourgeois publicists and politicians come under this category); but in their sum total these restrictions exclude and squeeze out the poor from politics, from active participation in democracy.

Vladimir Lenin photo

„All over the world, wherever there are capitalists, freedom of the press means freedom to buy up newspapers, to buy writers, to bribe, buy and fake “public opinion” for the benefit of the bourgeoisie.“

—  Vladimir Lenin Russian politician, led the October Revolution 1870 - 1924

Collected Works, Vol. 32, pp. 504–9.
Collected Works
Source: Revolution!: Sayings of Vladimir Lenin

Max Horkheimer photo
Tom Hiddleston photo
Benny Hinn photo
Jim Morrison photo
William S. Burroughs photo

„There is simply no room left for 'freedom from the tyranny of government' since city dwellers depend on it for food, power, water, transportation, protection, and welfare.“

—  William S. Burroughs, book Cities of the Red Night

Cities of the Red Night (1981)
Context: There is simply no room left for 'freedom from the tyranny of government' since city dwellers depend on it for food, power, water, transportation, protection, and welfare. Your right to live where you want, with companions of your choosing, under laws to which you agree, died in the eighteenth century with Captain Mission. Only a miracle or a disaster could restore it.

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Aung San Suu Kyi photo

„The only real prison is fear, and the only real freedom is freedom from fear.“

—  Aung San Suu Kyi State Counsellor of Myanmar and Leader of the National League for Democracy 1945

Jacques Prevért photo
James Baldwin photo
Viktor E. Frankl photo

„Our greatest freedom is the freedom to choose our attitude.“

—  Viktor E. Frankl Austrian neurologist and psychiatrist, and Holocaust survivor 1905 - 1997

Virginia Woolf photo

„Lock up your libraries if you like; but there is no gate, no lock, no bolt that you can set upon the freedom of my mind.“

—  Virginia Woolf, book A Room of One's Own

Variant: There is no gate, no lock, no bolt that you can set upon the freedom of my mind.
Source: A Room of One's Own (1929), Ch. 4, p. 90

Virginia Woolf photo
Erich Fried photo
John Lennon photo

„They brought out LSD to control people, and what they did was give us freedom.“

—  John Lennon English singer and songwriter 1940 - 1980

Source: The Beatles Anthology (2000), p. 179
Context: We must always remember to thank the CIA and the Army for LSD, by the way. Everything is the opposite of what it is, isn't it? They brought out LSD to control people, and what they did was give us freedom. Sometimes it works in mysterious ways its wonders to perform. But it sure as hell performs them. If you look a the government report book on acid, the only ones who jumped out of windows because of it were the ones in the Army. I never knew anybody who jumped out of a window or killed themselves because of it.

Jackie Chan photo

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