Friday, January 24, 2020 Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 licence.

Pearl Buck (1892 – 1973)


Primarily known as Pearl S Buck, was a prolific American writer.
Pearl Buck
The wild winds had been sown and the whirlwinds were gathering... and I was reaping what I had not sown... None of us could escape the history of the centuries before any of us had been born, and with which we had nothing to do. We had not, I think, ever committed even a mild unkindness against a Chinese, and certainly we had devoted ourselves to justice for them, we had taken sides against our own race again and again for their sakes, sensitive always to injustices which others had committed and were still committing. But nothing mattered today, neither the kindness nor the cruelty. We were in hiding for our lives because we were white.
Buck quotes
Ah well, perhaps one has to be very old before one learns how to be amused rather than shocked.
Buck
Growth itself contains the germ of happiness.




Buck Pearl quotes
Because psychologists have been able to discover, exactly as in a slow-motion picture, the way the human creature acquires knowledge and habits, the normal child has been vastly helped by what the retarded have taught us.
Buck Pearl
In any war a victory means another war, and yet another, until some day inevitably the tides turn, and the victor is the vanquished, and the circle reverses itself, but remains nevertheless a circle. ... I came home more torn in heart than any child should be, for I saw that each side was right as well as wrong, and I yearned over both in a helpless fashion, unable to see how, history being what it was, anything now could be done.
Pearl Buck quotes
The bitterest creature under heaven is the wife who discovers that her husband’s bravery is only bravado, that his strength is only a uniform, that his power is but a gun in the hands of a fool.
Pearl Buck
The instinct which creates the arts is not the same as that which produces art. The creative instinct is, in its final analysis and in its simplest terms, an enormous extra vitality, a super-energy, born inexplicably in an individual, a vitality great beyond all the needs of his own living — an energy which no single life can consume. This energy consumes itself then in creating more life, in the form of music, painting, writing, or whatever is its most natural medium of expression. Nor can the individual keep himself from this process, because only by its full function is he relieved of the burden of this extra and peculiar energy — an energy at once physical and mental, so that all his senses are more alert and more profound than another man's, and all his brain more sensitive and quickened to that which his senses reveal to him in such abundance that actuality overflows into imagination. It is a process proceeding from within. It is the heightened activity of every cell of his being, which sweeps not only himself, but all human life about him, or in him, in his dreams, into the circle of its activity.
Buck Pearl quotes
The common sense of people will surely prove to them someday that mutual support and cooperation are only sensible for the security and happiness of all. Such faith keeps me continually ready and purposeful with energy to do what one person can towards shaping the environment in which the human being can grow with freedom.
Buck
How does a woman of this magnitude and range slip away from our national consciousness? She has not exactly disappeared. Rather, as one reader of an earlier draft of this book shrewdly put it, she has been "hidden in plain sight," obscured beneath a caricature that belies her complexity and her achievement. ... In the years after World War II, Buck's literary reputation shrunk to the vanishing point. She stood on the wrong side of virtually every line drawn by those who constructed the lists of required reading in the 1950s and 1960s.
Buck Pearl
Praise out of season, or tactlessly bestowed, can freeze the heart as much as blame.
Pearl Buck
Every event has had its cause, and nothing, not the least wind that blows, is accident or causeless. To understand what happens now one must find the cause, which may be very long ago in its beginning, but is surely there, and therefore a knowledge of history as detailed as possible is essential if we are to comprehend the present and be prepared for the future. Fate, Mr. Kung taught me, is not the blind superstition or helplessness that waits stupidly for what may happen. Fate is unalterable only in the sense that given a cause, a certain result must follow, but no cause is inevitable in itself, and man can shape his world if he does not resign himself to ignorance.




Pearl Buck quotes
Chinese are wise in comprehending without many words what is inevitable and inescapable and therefore only to be borne.
Pearl Buck
One does not live half a life in Asia without return. When it would be I did not know, nor even where it would be, or to what cause. In our changing world nothing changes more than geography. The friendly country of China, the home of my childhood and youth, is for the time being forbidden country. I refuse to call it enemy country. The people in my memory are too kind and the land too beautiful.
Buck quotes
Like Confucius of old, I am absorbed in the wonder of earth, and the life upon it, and I cannot think of heaven and the angels. I have enough for this life. If there is no other life, than this one has been enough to make it worth being born, myself a human being. With so profound a faith in the human heart and its power to grow toward the light, I find here reason and cause enough for hope and confidence in the future of mankind.
Buck Pearl
I became mentally bifocal, and so I learned early to understand that there is no such condition in human affairs as absolute truth. There is only truth as people see it, and truth, even in fact, may be kaleidoscopic in its variety. The damage such perception did to me I have felt ever since, although damage may be too dark a word, for it merely meant that I could never belong entirely to one side of any question. To be a Communist would be absurd to me, as absurd as to be entirely anything and equally impossible. I straddled the globe too young.
Buck Pearl quotes
I am an inveterate homemaker, it is at once my pleasure, my recreation, and my handicap. Were I a man, my books would have been written in leisure, protected by a wife and a secretary and various household officials. As it is, being a woman, my work has had to be done between bouts of homemaking.
Pearl Buck
It is a shameful sign of our arrogance that our history departments have almost no Chinese history in them, our literature courses almost no Chinese literature, our philosophy departments almost none of the great Chinese systems of philosophy. And our religious schools have been the most arrogant of all.
This ignorant arrogant mind has become fixed in its patterns. It is the pattern which considers anything not American to be inferior — unless it be English.
Pearl Buck quotes
You can judge your age by the amount of pain you feel when you come into contact with a new idea.
Pearl Buck
Race prejudice is not only a shadow over the colored — it is a shadow over all of us, and the shadow is darkest over those who feel it least and allow its evil effects to go on.
Buck Pearl
Yet somehow our society must make it right and possible for old people not to fear the young or be deserted by them, for the test of a civilization is in the way that it cares for its helpless members.


© 2009–2013Quotes Privacy Policy | Contact