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Émile Zola quotes Showing 1-30 of 368

“If you ask me what I came to do in this world, I, an artist, will answer you: I am here to live out loud.”
Émile Zola
“Sin ought to be something exquisite, my dear boy.”
Emile Zola
“I am little concerned with beauty or perfection. I don't care for the great centuries. All I care about is life, struggle, intensity.”
Emile Zola
“I would rather die of passion than of boredom.”
Émile Zola, The Ladies' Paradise
“I am here to live out loud.”
Emila Zola
“Civilization will not attain to its perfection until the last stone from the last church falls on the last priest.”
Émile Zola
“The artist is nothing without the gift, but the gift is nothing without work.”
Émile Zola
“Blow the candle out, I don't need to see what my thoughts look like.”
Emile Zola, Germinal
“There are two men inside the artist, the poet and the craftsman. One is born a poet. One becomes a craftsman.”
Emile Zola
“If people can just love each other a little bit, they can be so happy.”
Émile Zola, Germinal
tags: love
“If you shut up truth and bury it under the ground, it will but grow, and gather to itself such explosive power that the day it bursts through it will blow up everything in its way.”
Émile Zola
“If you ask me what I came into this life to do, I will tell you: I came to live out loud.”
Émile Zola
“From the moment I start a new novel, life’s just one endless torture. The first few chapters may go fairly well and I may feel there’s still a chance to prove my worth, but that feeling soon disappears and every day I feel less and less satisfied. I begin to say the book’s no good, far inferior to my earlier ones, until I’ve wrung torture out of every page, every sentence, every word, and the very commas begin to look excruciatingly ugly. Then, when it’s finished, what a relief! Not the blissful delight of the gentleman who goes into ecstasies over his own production, but the resentful relief of a porter dropping a burden that’s nearly broken his back . . . Then it starts all over again, and it’ll go on starting all over again till it grinds the life out of me, and I shall end my days furious with myself for lacking talent, for not leaving behind a more finished work, a bigger pile of books, and lie on my death-bed filled with awful doubts about the task I’ve done, wondering whether it was as it ought to have been, whether I ought not to have done this or that, expressing my last dying breath the wish that I might do it all over again!”
Émile Zola, The Masterpiece
“I have but one passion: to enlighten those who have been kept in the dark, in the name of humanity which has suffered so much and is entitled to happiness. My fiery protest is simply the cry of my very soul.”
Émile Zola, J'accuse!
“She was cold by nature, self-love predominating over passion; rather than being virtuous, she preferred to have her pleasures all to herself.”
Émile Zola, Pot Luck
“It is not I who am strong, it is reason, it is truth.”
Emile Zola
“Respectable people... What bastards!”
Émile Zola, The Belly of Paris
“Art is a corner of creation seen through a temperament.”
Emile Zola
tags: art
“When truth is buried underground it grows, it chokes, it gathers such an explosive force that on the day it bursts out, it blows up everything with it.”
Émile Zola
“The fate of animals is of far greater importance to me than the fear of appearing ridiculous.”
Emile Zola
“Don't go looking at me like that because you'll wear your eyes out.”
Emile Zola, La Bête humaine
“When you have a sorrow that is too great it leaves no room for any other.”
Émile Zola
“When lovers kiss on the cheeks, it is because they are searching, feeling for one another's lips. Lovers are made by a kiss.”
Émile Zola, The Fortune of the Rougons
“The past was but the cemetery of our illusions: one simply stubbed one's toes on the gravestones.”
Émile Zola, The Masterpiece
“They dared not peer down into their own natures, down into the feverish confusion that filled their minds with a kind of dense, acrid mist.”
Émile Zola, Thérèse Raquin
“And then there are always clever people about to promise you that everything will be all right if only you put yourself out a bit... And you get carried away, you suffer so much from the things that exist that you ask for what can't ever exist. Now look at me, I was well away dreaming like a fool and seeing visions of a nice friendly life on good terms with everybody, and off I went, up into the clouds. And when you fall back into the mud it hurts a lot. No! None of it was true, none of those things we thought we could see existed at all. All that was really there was still more misery-- oh yes! as much of that as you like-- and bullets into the bargain!”
Emile Zola
“Je n'ai guère de souci de beauté ni de perfection... Je n'ai souci que de vie, de lutte, de fièvre.”
Emile Zola
“These young people naturally grow up with ideas different from ours, for they are born for times when we shall no longer be here”
Émile Zola, Work
“Death had to take her little by little, bit by bit, dragging her along to the bitter end of the miserable existence she'd made for herself. They never even knew what she did die of. Some spoke of a chill. But the truth was that she died from poverty, from the filth and the weariness of her wretched life.”
Émile Zola, L'Assommoir
tags: death
“Oh, the fools, like a lot of good little schoolboys, scared to death of anything they've been taught is wrong!”
Émile Zola, The Masterpiece

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