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Individuality - Originality Quotations

Guest Author - Danielle Hollister

INDIVIDUALITY/ORIGINALITY
  1. "Men often applaud an imitation and hiss the real thing."
    --Aesop

  2. "Originality is unexplored territory. You get there by carrying a canoe -- you can't take a taxi."
    --Alan Alda

  3. "In social institutions, the whole is always less than the sum of its parts. There will never be a state as good as its people, or a church worthy of its congregation, or a university equal to its faculty and students. "
    --Edward Abbey

  4. "No bird has ever uttered note That was not in some first bird's throat; Since Eden's freshness and man's fall No rose has been original. "
    -- Thomas Bailey Aldrich

  5. "Men acquire a particular quality by constantly acting in a particular way. "
    -- Aristotle

  6. "Resolve to be thyself; and know that he who finds himself loses his misery."
    - Matthew Arnold

  7. "Originality is the essence of true scholarship. Creativity is the soul of the true scholar. "
    --Nnamdi Azikiwe

  8. "How we remember, what we remember, and why we remember form the most personal map of our individuality."
    -- Christina Baldwin

  9. "One cup poured into another makes different waters; tears shed by one eye would blind if wept into another's eye. The breast we strike in joy is not the breast we strike in pain; any man's smile would be consternation on another's mouth. "
    -- Djuna Barnes

  10. "Be daring, be different, be impractical, be anything that will assert integrity of purpose and imaginative vision against the play-it-safers, the creatures of the commonplace, the slaves of the ordinary."
    --Sir Cecil Beaton

  11. "About the most originality that any writer can hope to achieve honestly is to steal with good judgment."
    --Josh Billings

  12. "A child develops individuality long before he discovers taste. "
    -- Erma Bombeck

  13. "Every man's work, whether it be literature or music or pictures or architecture or anything else, is always a portrait of himself. "
    --Samuel Butler

  14. "Originality is a thing we constantly clamour for, and constantly quarrel with."
    --Thomas Carlyle

  15. "The merit of originality is not novelty; it is sincerity. The believing man is the original man; whatsoever he believes, he believes it for himself, not for another."
    --Thomas Carlyle

  16. "The boughs of no two trees ever have the same arrangement. Nature always produces individuals; she never produces classes. "
    -- Lydia Maria Child

  17. "Trust yourself. Think for yourself. Act for yourself. Speak for yourself. Be yourself. Imitation is suicide."

  18. "Individuality is the aim of political liberty. "
    -- James Fenimore Cooper

  19. "Individuality is either the mark of genius or the reverse. Mediocrity finds safety in standardization. "
    -- Frederick E. Crane

  20. "There never were in the world two opinions alike, no more than two hairs or two grains; the most universal quality is diversity."
    --Michel de Montaigne

  21. "My manner of thinking, so you say, cannot be approved. Do you suppose I care? A poor fool indeed is he who adopts a manner of thinking for others! My manner of thinking stems straight from my considered reflections; it holds with my existence, with the way I am made. It is not in my power to alter it; and were it, I'd not do so."
    -- Marquis de Sade

  22. "No man is an Island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main; if a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as if a manor of thy friends or of thine own were; any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind; And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee. "
    --John Donne

  23. "A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do. "
    --Bob Dylan

  24. "No member of a crew is praised for the rugged individuality of his rowing."
    -- Ralph Waldo Emerson

  25. "An institution is the lengthened shadow of one man. "
    -- Ralph Waldo Emerson

  26. "The universal does not attract us until housed in an individual."
    --Ralph Waldo Emerson

  27. "Insist on yourself; never imitate. Your own gift you can present every moment with the cumulative force of a whole life's cultivation; but of the adopted talent of another, you have only an extemporaneous half-expression. That which each can do best none but his Maker can teach him."
    -- Ralph Waldo Emerson

  28. "Know then that the world exists for you. . . . All that Adam had, all that Caesar could, you have and can do. Adam called his house heaven and earth; Caesar called his house Rome; you perhaps call yours a cobbler's trade, a hundred acres of ploughed land, or a scholar's garret. Yet line for line and point for point your dominion is as great as theirs, though without fine names. Build therefore your own world."
    -- Ralph Waldo Emerson

  29. "We fancy men are individuals; so are pumpkins; but every pumpkin in the field goes through every point of pumpkin history."
    --Ralph Waldo Emerson

  30. "I am only one, But still I am one. I cannot do everything, But still I can do something; And because I cannot do everything I will not refuse to do the something that I can do. "
    -- Edward Everett

  31. "Americans are the only people in the world known to me whose status anxiety prompts them to advertise their college and university affiliations in the rear window of their automobiles. "
    --Paul Fussell

  32. "We tend to see our own experiences as the normal process, so we are often amazed that anyone could have taken a different path. But when we do meet up, it's always fascinating to compare notes about the different ways to get there."
    --Daniel Gilly

  33. "All profoundly original work looks ugly at first. "
    -- Clement Greenberg

  34. "Originality exists in every individual because each of us differs from the others. We are all primary numbers divisible only by ourselves."
    --Jean Guitton

  35. "The thing that makes you exceptional, if you are at all, is inevitably that which must also make you lonely. "
    -- Lorainne Hansberry

  36. "There are no original ideas. There are only original people."
    --Barbara Grizzuli Harrison

  37. "In exploring new and doubtful tracts of speculation, the mind strikes out true and original views; as a drop of water hesitates at first what direction it will take, but afterwards follows its own course."
    --William Hazlitt

  38. "Don't worry about your originality. You couldn't get rid of it even if you wanted to. It will stick with you and show up for better or worse in spite of all you or anyone else can do."
    --Robert Henri

  39. "Originality is simply a pair of fresh eyes."
    --Thomas W. Higginson

  40. "The original insight is most likely to come when elements stored in different compartments of the mind drift into the open, jostle one another, and now and then form new combinations."
    --Eric Hoffer

  41. "When people are fee to do as they please, they usually imitate each other. Originality is deliberate and forced, and partakes of the nature of a protest. "
    -- Eric Hoffer

  42. "What is originality? Undetected plagiarism."
    --Dean Inge

  43. "It is a blessed thing that in every age some one has had individuality enough and courage enough to stand by his own convictions. "
    --Robert Green Ingersoll

  44. "Individuality is founded in feeling; and the recesses of feeling, the darker, blinder strata of character, are the only places in the world in which we catch real fact in the making. "
    -- William James

  45. "He who has so little knowledge of human nature as to seek happiness by changing anything but his own disposition will waste his life in fruitless efforts. "
    -- Samuel Johnson

  46. "Originality is the art of concealing your source."
    --Franklin P. Jones

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  47. "The more original a discovery, the more obvious it seems afterwards."
    --Arthur Koestler

  48. "Original thought is like original sin: both happened before you were born to people you could not have possibly met. "
    --Fran Lebowitz

  49. "While an original is always hard to find, he is easy to recognize."
    --John L. Mason

  50. "The world in general doesn't know what to make of originality; it is startled out of its comfortable habits of thought, and its first reaction is one of anger."
    --W. Somerset Maugham

  51. "No affectation of peculiarity can conceal a commonplace mind. "
    -- W. Somerset Maugham

  52. "There is one characteristic of the present direction of public opinion, peculiarly calculated to make it intolerant of any marked demonstration of individuality. The general average of mankind are not only moderate in intellect, but also moderate in inclinations: they have no tastes or wishes strong enough to incline them to do anything unusual, and they consequently do not understand those who have, and class all such with the wild and intemperate whom they are accustomed to look down upon. "
    -- John Stuart Mill

  53. "[A] man and still more the woman, who can be accused either of doing "what nobody does," or of not doing "what everybody does," is the subject of as much depreciatory remark as if he or she had committed some grave moral delinquency."
    --John Stuart Mill

  54. "All good things which exist are the fruits of originality."
    --John Stuart Mill

  55. "Originality is the one thing which unoriginal minds cannot feel the use of... They are more in need of originality, the less they are conscious of the want."
    --John Stuart Mill

  56. "Originality is ... a by-product of sincerity."
    --Marianne Moore

  57. "It is better to create than to be learned, creating is the true essence of life. "
    -- Barthold Georg Niebuhr

  58. "Many a man fails as an original thinker simply because his memory is too good. "
    -- Friedrich Nietzsche

  59. "The surest way to corrupt a youth is to instruct him to hold in higher esteem those who think alike than those who think differently. "
    --Friedrich Nietzsche

  60. "...[I am] utterly entranced, at times, with the mere fact that there are other people, and that they experience themselves as the primary center of consciousness just as I do. That fact alone...Well, that fact alone is staggering."
    -- Joyce Carol Oates

  61. "The greater intellect one has, the more originality one finds in men. Ordinary persons find no difference between men."
    --Blaise Pascal

  62. "Originality is the fine art of remembering what you hear but forgetting where you heard it."
    --Lawrence J. Peter

  63. "You've gotta be original, because if you're like someone else, what do they need you for?"
    --Bernadette Peters

  64. "Utter originality is, of course, out of the question. "
    -- Ezra Pound

  65. "The nail that sticks up will be hammered down. "
    -- Japanese Proverb

  66. "Society exists only as a mental concept; in the real world there are only individuals."
    --Charley Reese

  67. "A mere copier of nature can never produce anything great. "
    --Joshua Reynolds

  68. "I invent nothing. I rediscover. "
    -- Auguste Rodin

  69. "In America everybody is of the opinion that he has no social superiors, since all men are equal, but he does not admit that he has no social inferiors, for, from the time of Jefferson onward, the doctrine that all men are equal applies only upwards, not downwards."
    -- Bertrand Russell

  70. "What the world calls originality is only an unaccustomed method of tickling it. "
    -- George Bernard Shaw

  71. "When there is an original sound in the world, it makes a hundred echoes."
    --John Shedd

  72. "Originality is not seen in single words or even in sentences. Originality is the sum total of a man's thinking or his writing."
    --Isaac Bashevis Singer

  73. "I am not eccentric. It's just that I am more alive than most people. I am an unpopular electric eel set in a pond of goldfish."
    --Dame Edith Sitwell

  74. "Originality consists not only in doing things differently, but also is "doing things Better.""
    --Edward C. Skedman

  75. "Originality does not consist in saying what no one has ever said before, but in saying what you think yourself."
    --James Stephens

  76. "Originality implies being bold enough to go beyond accepted norms."
    --Anthony Storr

  77. "The plague of mankind is the fear and rejection of diversity: monotheism, monarchy, monogamy - and, in our age, monomedicine. The belief that there is only one right way to live - only one right way to regulate religious, political, sexual, medical affairs - is the root cause of the greatest threat to man: members of his own species, bent on ensuring his salvation, security, and sanity."
    -- Thomas Szasz

  78. "If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. "
    -- Henry David Thoreau

  79. "Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself. "
    -- Leo Tolstoy

  80. "He never chooses an opinion; he just wears whatever happens to be in style."
    --Leo Tolstoy

  81. "The man with a new idea is a crank until the idea succeeds."
    --Mark Twain

  82. "There is no ache more deadly than the striving to be oneself. "
    -- Yevgeniy Vinokurov

  83. "Originality is nothing by judicious imitation. The most original writers borrowed one from another."
    --Voltaire

  84. "True originality consists not in a new manner but in a new vision."
    --Edith Wharton

  85. "I celebrate myself, and sing myself, And what I assume you shall assume, For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you."
    -- Walt Whitman

  86. "Do I contradict myself? Very well then I contradict myself (I am large, I contain multitudes). "
    -- Walt Whitman

  87. "The whole theory of the universe is directed unerringly to one single individual. "
    -- Walt Whitman

  88. "All truly wise thoughts have been thought already thousands of times; but to make them truly ours, we must think them over again honestly, till they take root in our personal experience."
    --Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

  89. "We are all born originals -- why is it so many of us die copies?"
    --Edward Young

  90. "Every heart is the other heart. Every soul is the other soul. Every face is the other face. The individual is the one illusion. "
    -- Margaurite Young

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Content copyright © 2013 by Danielle Hollister. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Danielle Hollister. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Jon Snyder for details.

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