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Quotes About Immigrants

Quotes tagged as "immigrants" (showing 1-30 of 49)
Mahmoud Darwish
“I am from there. I am from here.
I am not there and I am not here.
I have two names, which meet and part,
and I have two languages.
I forget which of them I dream in.”
Mahmoud Darwish

Zadie Smith
“But it makes an immigrant laugh to hear the fears of the nationalist, scared of infection, penetration, miscegenation, when this is small fry, peanuts, compared to what the immigrant fears - dissolution, disappearance.
Zadie Smith

Zadie Smith
“These days, it feels to me like you make a devil's pact when you walk into this country. You hand over your passport at the check-in, you get stamped, you want to make a little money, get yourself started... but you mean to go back! Who would want to stay? Cold, wet, miserable; terrible food, dreadful newspapers - who would want to stay? In a place where you are never welcomed, only tolerated. Just tolerated. Like you are an animal finally house-trained.”
Zadie Smith, White Teeth

C.J. Sansom
“We of alien looks or words must stick together.”
C.J. Sansom, Revelation

Zadie Smith
“No fiction, no myths, no lies, no tangled webs - this is how Irie imagined her homeland. Because homeland is one of the magical fantasy words like unicorn and soul and infinity that have now passed into language.”
Zadie Smith, White Teeth

Ryū Murakami
“All Americans have something lonely about them. I don't know what the reason might be, except maybe that they're all descended from immigrants.”
Ryū Murakami, In the Miso Soup

John Fante
“I have seen them stagger out of their movie palaces and blink their empty eyes in the face of reality once more, and stagger home, to read the Times, to find out what's going on in the world. I have vomited at their newspapers, read their literature, observed their customs, eaten their food, desired their women, gaped at their art. But I am poor, and my name ends with a soft vowel, and they hate me and my father, and my father's father, and they would have my blood and put me down, but they are old now, dying in the sun and in the hot dust of the road, and I am young and full of hope and love for my country and my times, and when I say Greaser to you it is not my heart that speaks, but the quivering of an old wound, and I am ashamed of the terrible thing I have done.”
John Fante, Ask the Dust

Abraham Verghese
“Superorganism. A biologist coined that word for our great African ant colonies, claiming that consciousness and intelligence resided not in the individual ant but in the collective ant mind. The trail of red taillights stretching to the horizon as day broke around us made me think of that term. Order and purpose must reside somewhere other than within each vehicle. That morning I heard the hum, the respiration of the superorganism. It's a sound the new immigrant hears but not for long. By the time I learned to say "6-inch Number 7 on rye with Swiss hold the lettuce," the sound, too, was gone. It became part of the what the mind would label silence. You were subsumed into the superorganism.”
Abraham Verghese, Cutting for Stone

Kamila Shamsie
“And yet. When I read the Dawn on line and then looked around me to the pristine surroundings of campus life, I knew that every other city in the world only showed me its surface, but when I looked at Karachi I saw the blood running through and out of its veins; I knew that I understood the unspoken as much as the articulated among its inhabitants; I knew that there were so many reasons to fail to love it, to cease to love it, to be unable to love it, that it made love a fierce and unfathomable thing; I knew I couldn’t think of Karachi and find any easy answers, and I didn’t know how to decide if that was reason to go back or reason to stay away.”
Kamila Shamsie, Kartography

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
“She recognized in Kelsey the nationalism of liberal Americans who copiously criticized America but did not like you to do so; they expected you to be silent and grateful, and always reminded you of how much better than wherever you had come from America was.”
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Americanah

John F. Kennedy
“The interaction of disparate cultures, the vehemence of the ideals that led the immigrants here, the opportunity offered by a new life, all gave America a flavor and a character that make it as unmistakable and as remarkable to people today as it was to Alexis de Tocqueville in the early part of the nineteenth century.”
John F. Kennedy, A Nation of Immigrants

James Jones
“I like it too," Angelo said. "I love this country. Much you and anybody, and you know it."

"I know it," Prew said.

"But I still hate this country. You love the Army. But I dont love the Army. This country's Army is why I hate this country. What did this country ever do for me? Gimme a right to vote for men I cant elect? You can have it. Gimme a right to work at a job I hate? You can have that too. Then tell I'm a Citizen of the greatest richest country on earth, if I dont believe it look at Park Avenue. Carnival prizes. All carnival prizes. [..] They shouldnt teach their immigrants' kids all about democracy unless they mean to let them have a little bit of it, it ony makes for trouble. Me and the United States is dissociating our alliance as of right now, until the United States can find time to read its own textbooks a little."

Prew thought, a little sickly, of the little book, The Man Without A Country that his mother used to read to him so often, and how the stern patriotic judge condemned the man to live on a warship where no one could ever mention home to him the rest of his whole life, and how he had always felt that pinpoint of pleased righteous anger at seeing the traitor get what he deserved.”
James Jones, From Here to Eternity

June Ahern
“Doomed to Hell. Every last one of you.”
June Ahern, The Skye in June

James Jones
“They shouldnt teach their immigrants' kids all about democracy unless they mean to let them have a little bit of it, it ony makes for trouble. Me and the United States is dissociating our alliance as of right now, until the United States can find time to read its own textbooks a little.”
James Jones, From Here to Eternity

Sherry Garland
“I have finally learned that I am as much a part of this country as those villagers. Whether they like it or not, my umbilical cord is buried in the earth of Vietnam just like theirs.”
Sherry Garland, Song of the Buffalo Boy

Marjane Satrapi
“Certainly, they'd had to endure the war, but they had each other close by. They had never known the confusion of being a third-worlder, they had always a home!”
Marjane Satrapi

Zadie Smith
“He knew that he, Millat, was a Paki no matter where he came from; that he smelled of curry; had no sexual identity; took other people’s jobs; or had no job and bummed off the state; or gave all the jobs to his relatives; that he could be a dentist or a shop-owner or a curry-shifter, but not a footballer or a filmmaker; that he should go back to his own country; or stay here and earn his bloody keep; that he worshiped elephants and wore turbans; that no one who looked like Millat, or spoke like Millat, or felt like Millat, was ever on the news unless they had recently been murdered.”
Zadie Smith, White Teeth

Sergio Troncoso
“At Harvard, the strong and savvy and confident thrived, while the nice or shy or quaintly moral were just bit players. In Ysleta, you believed in God because you were poor and needed something to hold on to. At Harvard, you believed in your good luck or bad luck, in all-nighters, in your political savvy.”
Sergio Troncoso, From This Wicked Patch of Dust

Mira Jacob
“Nobody likes these things life hands us. But part of becoming a man is understanding how to face them head on instead of running all the time. It's time you learned how to do that.”
Mira Jacob, The Sleepwalker's Guide to Dancing

James T. Farrell
“He had come to America, haven of peace and liberty, and it, too, was joining the slaughter, fighting for the big capitalists. There was no peace for men, only murder, cruelty, brutality.”
James T. Farrell, Studs Lonigan

Mira Jacob
“Why is it that fathers so often ensure the outcome they are trying to avoid? Is their need to dominate so much stronger than their instinct to protect? Did Thomas know, Amina wondered as she watched him, that he had just done the human equivalent of a lion sinking his teeth into his own cub?”
Mira Jacob, The Sleepwalker's Guide to Dancing

Sherry Marie Gallagher
“My definition of an intellectual is someone who can listen to the William Tell Overture without thinking of the Lone Ranger" - Billy Connolly”
Sherry Marie Gallagher, Boulder Blues: A Tale of the Colorado Counterculture

Mira Jacob
“Mindy Lujan with her feathered hair, bullying blue-lined eyes, and potty mouth that rivaled Akhil's, managing to use fuck as a verb, an adjective, and a noun, often in the same sentence, as in, "Who the fuck does that fucking fuck think she's fucking with?”
Mira Jacob, The Sleepwalker's Guide to Dancing

Mira Jacob
“An hour later, Amina stood at a pay phone in a mall hallway, where poop and perfume and the grease from the food court formed the kind of atmosphere you might find in Jupiter's red spot”
Mira Jacob, The Sleepwalker's Guide to Dancing

Pam   Jones
“Her occupation was the worst that anyone could think of. No guest in the park had to think of it because, unlike the wandering dwarf women, her job had no bearing on paper.”
Pam Jones, The Biggest Little Bird

Richard Flanagan
“Like all immigrants, he seemed to have an unerring instinct for the oldest, truest words in his new language. The way he said the word, it felt free of the treacherous weight of mate”
Richard Flanagan, The Narrow Road to the Deep North

“Whenever people talk in the abstract about the pros and cons of immigration, one should not forget that immigrants are individual human beings whose lives happen not to fit neatly within national borders – and that like all human beings, they are all different.
How different, though? Different better, or different worse? Such basic questions underlie whether people are willing to accept outsiders in their midst”
Philippe Legrain, Immigrants: Your Country Needs Them

Salman Rushdie
“It may be that writers in my position,exiles, or emigrants or expatriates, are haunted by some sense of loss, some urge to reclaim, to look back, even at the risk of being mutilated into pillars of salt. But if we do look back, we must do in the knowledge - which gives rise to profound uncertainties- that our physical alienation from India almost inevitably means that we will not be capable of reclaiming precisely the thing that was lost, that we will, in short, create fictions, not actual cities or villages, but invisible ones, imaginary homelands, Indias of the mind.”
Salman Rushdie

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