„Everything can be explained to the people, on the single condition that you want them to understand.“

Source: The Wretched of the Earth

Last update May 22, 2020. History
Frantz Fanon photo
Frantz Fanon45
Martiniquais writer, psychiatrist, philosopher, revolutiona… 1925 - 1961

Related quotes

Shunryu Suzuki photo

„Communication is — start by understanding — your own understanding about people. Even though you want them to understand you, you know, it is — unless you understand people, it is almost impossible.“

—  Shunryu Suzuki Japanese Buddhist missionary 1904 - 1971

Sun-Faced Buddha, Moon-Faced Buddha lecture at the Zen Mountain Center (17 August 1971) http://suzukiroshi.sfzc.org/archives/index.cgi/710817V.html
Context: Communication is — start by understanding — your own understanding about people. Even though you want them to understand you, you know, it is — unless you understand people, it is almost impossible. Don't you think so? Only when you understand people, they may understand you. So even though you do not say anything, if you understand people there is some communication.

Zig Ziglar photo

„You can have everything in life that you want if you just give enough other people what they want.“

—  Zig Ziglar American motivational speaker 1926 - 2012

Secrets of Closing the Sale (1984)
Variant: You can get everything in life you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want.

Czeslaw Milosz photo

„Vulgarized knowledge characteristically gives birth to a feeling that everything is understandable and explained.“

—  Czeslaw Milosz, book The Captive Mind

The Captive Mind (1953)
Context: Vulgarized knowledge characteristically gives birth to a feeling that everything is understandable and explained. It is like a system of bridges built over chasms. One can travel boldly ahead over these bridges, ignoring the chasms. It is forbidden to look down into them; but that, alas, does not alter the fact that they exist.

Herbert Spencer photo

„If a single cell, under appropriate conditions, becomes a man in the space of a few years, there can surely be no difficulty in understanding how, under appropriate conditions, a cell may, in the course of untold millions of years, give origin to the human race.“

—  Herbert Spencer English philosopher, biologist, sociologist, and prominent classical liberal political theorist 1820 - 1903

Vol. I, Part III: The Evolution of Life, Ch. 3 : General Aspects of the Evolution Hypothesis; compare: "As nine months go to the shaping an infant ripe for his birth, / So many a million of ages have gone to the making of man", Alfred Lord Tennyson, Maud (1855)
Principles of Biology (1864)

Ann Beattie photo
Albert Einstein photo

„You do not really understand something unless you can explain it to your grandmother.“

—  Albert Einstein German-born physicist and founder of the theory of relativity 1879 - 1955

variant: If you can't explain something to a six-year-old, you really don't understand it yourself.
variant: If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough.
Frequently attributed to Richard Feynman
Probably based on a similar quote about explaining physics to a "barmaid" by Ernest Rutherford
Page 418 of Einstein: His Life and Times (1972) by Ronald W. Clark says that Louis de Broglie did attribute a similar statement to Einstein:
: To de Broglie, Einstein revealed an instinctive reason for his inability to accept the purely statistical interpretation of wave mechanics. It was a reason which linked him with Rutherford, who used to state that "it should be possible to explain the laws of physics to a barmaid." Einstein, having a final discussion with de Broglie on the platform of the Gare du Nord in Paris, whence they had traveled from Brussels to attend the Fresnel centenary celebrations, said "that all physical theories, their mathematical expressions apart ought to lend themselves to so simple a description 'that even a child could understand them.' "
The de Broglie quote is from his 1962 book New Perspectives in Physics, p. 184 http://books.google.com/books?id=xY45AAAAMAAJ&q=%22mathematical+expression+apart%22#search_anchor.
Cf. this quote from David Hilbert's talk Mathematical Problems given in 1900 before the International Congress of Mathematicians:
: "A mathematical theory is not to be considered complete until you have made it so clear that you can explain it to the first man whom you meet on the street."
Cf. this quote from Kurt Vonnegut's novel Cat's Cradle:
: Dr. Hoenikker used to say that any scientist who couldn't explain to an eight-year-old what he was doing was a charlatan.
Misattributed

Neal Stephenson photo

„Truly powerful people don't explain why they want respect. They simply don't engage someone who doesn't give it to them.“

—  Sherry Argov American writer 1977

Source: Why Men Love Bitches: From Doormat to Dreamgirl—A Woman's Guide to Holding Her Own in a Relationship

Anne Lamott photo

„You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories. If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should have behaved better.“

—  Anne Lamott Novelist, essayist, memoirist, activist 1954

Variant: You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories. If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should've behaved better.
Source: Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life

Chrysippus photo

„Learn to understand others. Most people do not want to understand others, instead wanting others to understand them. This is egotism. We should try to think less of ourselves and more of others. Try to understand others better.“

—  Jun Hong Lu Australian Buddhist leader 1959

Quotes from Words of Wisdoms Vol.2
Original: (zh_Hant) 要學會理解別人。 每一個人都不會想到去瞭解別人, 都想讓別人瞭解自己, 這就是一切以“我”為出發點。 活在世界上, 少想自己,多想別人,多瞭解別人。

Michael Crichton photo
Felix Frankfurter photo

„Everything depends on our understanding of them.“

—  Felix Frankfurter American judge 1882 - 1965

Reply to counsel who said a challenge from the bench was “just a matter of semantics,” Reader’s Digest (June 1964).
Other writings
Context: All our work, our whole life is a matter of semantics, because words are the tools with which we work, the material out of which laws are made, out of which the Constitution was written. Everything depends on our understanding of them.

Chuck Palahniuk photo

„It's pathetic how we can't live with the things we can't understand. How we need everything labeled and explained and deconstructed.“

—  Chuck Palahniuk, book Choke

Variant: It’s pathetic how we can’t live with the things we can’t understand. How we need everything labeled and explained and deconstructed.
Source: Asfixia

Ryan North photo

„If you find you are not understanding my explaination for a joke, hit "F5" on your browser and the page will refresh and I will explain it again.“

—  Ryan North Canadian webcomic writer and programmer 1980

Jokes Explained page http://www.insaneabode.com/roboterotica/jokesexplained/index.html

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