Quotes by Thomas Mann

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Solitude gives birth to the original in us, to beauty unfamiliar and perilous- to poetry. But also, it gives birth to the opposite: to the perverse, the illicit, the absurd.

Tolerance becomes a crime when applied to evil.
If you are possessed by an idea, you find it expressed everywhere, you even smell it.
Speech is civilization itself. The word... preserves contact -- it is silence which isolates.
It is a strange fact that freedom and equality, the two basic ideas of democracy, are to some extent contradictory. Logically considered, freedom and equality are mutually exclusive, just as society and the individual are mutually exclusive.
You ask what is the use of classification, arrangement, systemization? I answer you: order and simplification are the first steps toward the mastery of a subject-the actual enemy is the unknown.
There is something suspicious about music, gentlemen. I insist that she is, by her nature, equivocal. I shall not be going too far in saying at once that she is politically suspect.
Opinions cannot survive if one has no chance to fight for them.
Order and simplification are the first steps towards the mastery of a subject.
We, when we sow the seeds of doubt deeper than the most up-to-date and modish free-thought has ever dreamed of doing, we well know what we are about. Only out of radical skeptics, out of moral chaos, can the Absolute spring, the anointed Terror of which the time has need.
Every reasonable human being should be a moderate Socialist.
What is uttered is finished and done with.
An art whose medium is language will always show a high degree of critical creativeness, for speech is itself a critique of life: it names, it characterizes, it passes judgment, in that it creates.
Human reason needs only to will more strongly than fate, and she is fate.
The meeting in the open of two dogs, strangers to each other, is one of the most painful, thrilling, and pregnant of all conceivable encounters; it is surrounded by an atmosphere of the last canniness, presided over by a constraint for which I have no precise name; they simply cannot pass each other, their mutual embarrassment is frightful to behold.
Extraordinary creature! So close a friend, and yet so remote.
The only religious way to think of death is as part and parcel of life.
I have always been an admirer. I regard the gift of admiration as indispensable if one is to amount to something; I don't know where I would be without it.