Colonialism Quotes

Quotes tagged as "colonialism" Showing 1-30 of 452
Edward W. Said
“You cannot continue to victimize someone else just because you yourself were a victim once—there has to be a limit”
Edward Said

Chinua Achebe
“Until the lions have their own historians, the history of the hunt will always glorify the hunter.”
Chinua Achebe (Author)

Martin Luther King Jr.
“Our nation was born in genocide when it embraced the doctrine that the original American, the Indian, was an inferior race. Even before there were large numbers of Negroes on our shore, the scar of racial hatred had already disfigured colonial society. From the sixteenth century forward, blood flowed in battles over racial supremacy. We are perhaps the only nation which tried as a matter of national policy to wipe out its indigenous population. Moreover, we elevated that tragic experience into a noble crusade. Indeed, even today we have not permitted ourselves to reject or feel remorse for this shameful episode. Our literature, our films, our drama, our folklore all exalt it. Our children are still taught to respect the violence which reduced a red-skinned people of an earlier culture into a few fragmented groups herded into impoverished reservations.”
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Christopher Hitchens
“Actually—and this was where I began to feel seriously uncomfortable—some such divine claim underlay not just 'the occupation' but the whole idea of a separate state for Jews in Palestine. Take away the divine warrant for the Holy Land and where were you, and what were you? Just another land-thief like the Turks or the British, except that in this case you wanted the land without the people. And the original Zionist slogan—'a land without a people for a people without a land'—disclosed its own negation when I saw the densely populated Arab towns dwelling sullenly under Jewish tutelage. You want irony? How about Jews becoming colonizers at just the moment when other Europeans had given up on the idea?”
Christopher Hitchens, Hitch 22: A Memoir

Barack Obama
“The worst thing that colonialism did was to cloud our view of our past.”
Barack Obama, Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance

Kurt Vonnegut Jr.
“The darkest secret of this country, I am afraid, is that too many of its citizens imagine that they belong to a much higher civilization somewhere else. That higher civilization doesn’t have to be another country. It can be the past instead—the United States as it was before it was spoiled by immigrants and the enfranchisement of the blacks.

This state of mind allows too many of us to lie and cheat and steal from the rest of us, to sell us junk and addictive poisons and corrupting entertainments. What are the rest of us, after all, but sub-human aborigines?”
Kurt Vonnegut, Bluebeard

Sukarno
“I hate imperialism. I detest colonialism. And I fear the consequences of their last bitter struggle for life. We are determined, that our nation, and the world as a whole, shall not be the play thing of one small corner of the world”
Soekarno

Christopher Hitchens
“Suppose that a man leaps out of a burning building—as my dear friend and colleague Jeff Goldberg sat and said to my face over a table at La Tomate in Washington not two years ago—and lands on a bystander in the street below. Now, make the burning building be Europe, and the luckless man underneath be the Palestinian Arabs. Is this a historical injustice? Has the man below been made a victim, with infinite cause of complaint and indefinite justification for violent retaliation? My own reply would be a provisional 'no,' but only on these conditions. The man leaping from the burning building must still make such restitution as he can to the man who broke his fall, and must not pretend that he never even landed on him. And he must base his case on the singularity and uniqueness of the original leap. It can't, in other words, be 'leap, leap, leap' for four generations and more. The people underneath cannot be expected to tolerate leaping on this scale and of this duration, if you catch my drift. In Palestine, tread softly, for you tread on their dreams. And do not tell the Palestinians that they were never fallen upon and bruised in the first place. Do not shame yourself with the cheap lie that they were told by their leaders to run away. Also, stop saying that nobody knew how to cultivate oranges in Jaffa until the Jews showed them how. 'Making the desert bloom'—one of Yvonne's stock phrases—makes desert dwellers out of people who were the agricultural superiors of the Crusaders.”
Christopher Hitchens, Hitch 22: A Memoir

Ngũgĩ wa Thiong'o
“Why did Africa let Europe cart away millions of Africa's souls from the continent to the four corners of the wind? How could Europe lord it over a continent ten times its size? Why does needy Africa continue to let its wealth meet the needs of those outside its borders and then follow behind with hands outstretched for a loan of the very wealth it let go? How did we arrive at this, that the best leader is the one that knows how to beg for a share of what he has already given away at the price of a broken tool? Where is the future of Africa?”
Ngũgĩ wa Thiong'o, Wizard of the Crow

Wilma Mankiller
“Though many non-Native Americans have learned very little about us, over time we have had to learn everything about them. We watch their films, read their literature, worship in their churches, and attend their schools. Every third-grade student in the United States is presented with the concept of Europeans discovering America as a "New World" with fertile soil, abundant gifts of nature, and glorious mountains and rivers. Only the most enlightened teachers will explain that this world certainly wasn't new to the millions of indigenous people who already lived here when Columbus arrived.”
Wilma Mankiller, Every Day Is a Good Day: Reflections by Contemporary Indigenous Women

“When two brothers are busy fighting, an evil man can easily attack and rob their poor mother. Mankind should always stay united, standing shoulder to shoulder so evil can never cheat and divide them.”
Suzy Kassem, Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem

Frantz Fanon
“Colinialism hardly ever exploits the whole of a country. It contents itself with bringing to light the natrual resources, which it extracts, and exports to meet the needs of the mother country's industries, thereby allowing certain sectors of the colony to become relatively rich. But the rest of the colony follows its path of under-development and poverty, or at all events sinks into it more deeply.”
Frantz Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth

Anthony Burgess
“Colonialism. The enforced spread of the rule of reason. But who is going to spread it among the colonizers?”
Anthony Burgess

Christopher Hitchens
“I regard anti-Semitism as ineradicable and as one element of the toxin with which religion has infected us. Perhaps partly for this reason, I have never been able to see Zionism as a cure for it. American and British and French Jews have told me with perfect sincerity that they are always prepared for the day when 'it happens again' and the Jew-baiters take over. (And I don't pretend not to know what they are talking about: I have actually seen the rabid phenomenon at work in modern and sunny Argentina and am unable to forget it.) So then, they seem to think, they will take refuge in the Law of Return, and in Haifa, or for all I know in Hebron. Never mind for now that if all of world Jewry did settle in Palestine, this would actually necessitate further Israeli expansion, expulsion, and colonization, and that their departure under these apocalyptic conditions would leave the new brownshirts and blackshirts in possession of the French and British and American nuclear arsenals. This is ghetto thinking, hardly even fractionally updated to take into account what has changed. The important but delayed realization will have to come: Israeli Jews are a part of the diaspora, not a group that has escaped from it. Why else does Israel daily beseech the often-flourishing Jews of other lands, urging them to help the most endangered Jews of all: the ones who rule Palestine by force of arms? Why else, having supposedly escaped from the need to rely on Gentile goodwill, has Israel come to depend more and more upon it? On this reckoning, Zionism must constitute one of the greatest potential non sequiturs in human history.”
Christopher Hitchens, Hitch 22: A Memoir

Arundhati Roy
“It is such a supreme folly to believe that nuclear weapons are deadly only if they're used. The fact that they exist at all, their presence in our lives, will wreak more havoc than we can begin to fathom. Nuclear weapons pervade our thinking. Control our behavior. Administer our societies. Inform our dreams. They bury themselves like meat hooks deep in the base of our brains. They are purveyors of madness. They are the ultimate colonizer. Whiter than any white man that ever lived. The very heart of whiteness.”
Arundhati Roy, The Cost of Living

Thomas Pynchon
“Colonies are the outhouses of the European soul, where a fellow can let his pants down and relax, enjoy the smell of his own shit.”
Thomas Pynchon, Gravity's Rainbow

Frantz Fanon
“To speak pidgin to a Negro makes him angry, because he himself is a pidgin-nigger-talker. But, I will be told, there is no wish, no intention to anger him. I grant this; but it is just this absence of wish, this lack of interest, this indifference, this automatic manner of classifying him, imprisoning him, primitivizing him, decivilizing him, that makes him angry.

If a man who speaks pidgin to a man of color or an Arab does not see anything wrong or evil in such behavior, it is because he has never stopped to think.”
Frantz Fanon, Black Skin, White Masks

Malcolm X
“America is subsidizing what is left of the prestige and strength of the once mighty Britain. The sun has set forever on that monocled, pith-helmeted resident colonialist, sipping tea with his delicate lady in the non-white colonies being systematically robbed of every valuable resource. Britain's superfluous royalty and nobility now exist by charging tourists to inspect the once baronial castles, and by selling memoirs, perfumes, autographs, titles, and even themselves.”
Malcolm X, The Autobiography of Malcolm X

Edward W. Said
“كلما ازداد تعدي أوروبا على الشرق في القرن التاسع عشر ازدادت ثقة الجمهور [الغربي] بالإستشراق. لكنه إذا كانت هذه الزيادة في الثقة قد تزامنت مع نقصان الإصالة، فلا ينبغي لنا أن ندهش كثيراً، لأن أسلوب الإستشراق منذ البداية كان يقوم على إعادة البناء والتكرار”
Edward W. Said, Orientalism

“Profit should never come at the cost of human blood. Any government that places profit before people is pure evil.”
Suzy Kassem, Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem

Joseph Conrad
“She walked with measured steps, draped in striped and fringed cloths, treading the earth proudly, with a slight jingle and flash of barbarous ornaments. She carried her head high; her hair was done in the shape of a helmet; she had brass leggings to the knee, brass wire gauntlets to the elbow, a crimson spot on her tawny cheek, innumerable necklaces of glass beads on her neck; bizarre things, charms, gifts of witch-men, that hung about her, glittered and trembled at every step. She must have had the value of several elephant tusks upon her. She was savage and superb, wild-eyed and magnificent; there was something ominous and stately in her deliberate progress. And in the hush that had fallen suddenly upon the whole sorrowful land, the immense wilderness, the colossal body of the pensive, as though it had been looking at the image of its own tenebrous and passionate soul.”
Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness

Alain Badiou
“The oppressed peoples of the earth are not objects for the exquisite turmoil of European consciences. They are subjects from which to learn how to exercise political intelligence and action. Obviously, colonial arrogance is a long time dying.”
Alain Badiou, Cinema

George Orwell
“A dull, decent people, cherishing and fortifying their dullness behind a quarter of a million bayonets.”
George Orwell, Burmese Days

Noam Chomsky
“My own concern is primarily the terror and violence carried out by my own state, for two reasons. For one thing, because it happens to be the larger component of international violence. But also for a much more important reason than that; namely, I can do something about it. So even if the U.S. was responsible for 2 percent of the violence in the world instead of the majority of it, it would be that 2 percent I would be primarily responsible for. And that is a simple ethical judgment. That is, the ethical value of one's actions depends on their anticipated and predictable consequences. It is very easy to denounce the atrocities of someone else. That has about as much ethical value as denouncing atrocities that took place in the 18th century.”
Noam Chomsky

Frantz Fanon
“The people come to understand that wealth is not the fruit of labour but the result of organised, protected robbery. Rich people are no longer respectable people; they are nothing more than flesh eating animals, jackals and vultures which wallow in the people's blood.”
Frantz Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth

“Les personnages de nos autres vies sont des fantômes que la littérature fait revivre.”
Olivier Weber

Tadeusz Borowski
“We are laying the foundation for some new, monstrous civilization. Only now do I realize what price was paid for building the ancient civilizations. The Egyptian pyramids, the temples and Greek statues—what a hideous crime they were! How much blood must have poured on to the Roman roads, the bulwarks, and the city walls. Antiquity—the tremendous concentration camp where the slave was branded on the forehead by his master, and crucified for trying to escape! Antiquity—the conspiracy of the free men against the slaves!
.... If the Germans win the war, what will the world know about us? They will erect huge buildings, highways, factories, soaring monuments. Our hands will be placed under every brick, and our backs will carry the steel rails and the slabs of concrete. They will kill off our families, our sick, our aged. They will murder our children.
And we shall be forgotten, drowned out by the voices of the poets, the jurists, the philosophers, the priests. They will produce their own beauty, virtue, and truth. They will produce religion.”
Tadeusz Borowski, This Way for the Gas, Ladies and Gentlemen

“No one starts a war warning that those involved will lose their innocence - that children will definitely die and be forever lost as a result of the conflict; that the war will not end for generations and generations, even after cease-fires have been declared and peace treaties have been signed. No one starts a war that way, but they should. It would at least be fair warning and an honest admission: even a good war - if there is such a thing - will kill anyone old enough to die.”
Alexandra Fulller

Walter Rodney
“[The] association of wealth with whites and poverty with blacks is not accidental. It is the nature of the imperialist relationship that enriches the metropolis at the expense of the colony i.e. it makes the whites richer and the blacks poorer.”
Walter Rodney, The Groundings with My Brothers

“. . . published the Road Map to Peace. The premise of this plan, as the Palestinian historians Samih Farsoun and Naseer Aruri point out, "is that the nearly forty-year-old impasse is not caused by an abnormal and illegal occupation but by the Palestinian resistance to that occupation. Progress was thus linked to ending the intifada and all acts of resistance rather than ending the occupation or reversing decades of colonial impoverishment of land, resource, and institutions.”
Saree Makdisi

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