The Price of the Ticket Quotes

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The Price of the Ticket: Collected Nonfiction, 1948-1985 The Price of the Ticket: Collected Nonfiction, 1948-1985 by James Baldwin
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“The great force of history comes from the fact that we carry it within us, are unconsciously controlled by it in many ways, and history is literally present in all that we do.”
James Baldwin, The Price of the Ticket: Collected Nonfiction, 1948-1985
“Freaks are called freaks and are treated as they are treated – in the main, abominably – because they are human beings who cause to echo, deep within us, our most profound terrors and desires.”
James Baldwin, The Price of the Ticket: Collected Nonfiction, 1948-1985
“Identity would seem to be the garment with which one covers the nakedness of the self: in which case, it is best that the garment be loose, a little like the robes of the desert, through which one's nakedness can always be felt, and, sometimes, discerned. This trust in one's nakedness is all that gives one the power to change one's robes.”
James Baldwin, The Price of the Ticket: Collected Nonfiction, 1948-1985
“The states of birth, suffering, love, and death, are extreme states: extreme, universal, and inescapable. We all know this, but we would rather not know it. The artist is present to correct the delusions to which we are all prey in our attempts to avoid this knowledge." - James Baldwin, "The Creative Process”
James Baldwin, The Price of the Ticket: Collected Nonfiction, 1948-1985
“There are few things more dreadful than dealing with a man who know that he is going under in his own eyes, and in the eyes of others. Nothing can help that man.”
James Baldwin, The Price of the Ticket: Collected Nonfiction, 1948-1985
“The American idea of sexuality appears to be rooted in the American idea of masculinity. Idea may not be the precise word, for the idea of one’s sexuality can only with great violence be divorced or distanced from the idea of the self. Yet something resembling this rupture has certainly occurred (and is occurring) in American life, and violence has been the American daily bread since we have heard of America. This violence, furthermore, is not merely literal and actual but appears to be admired and lusted after, and the key to the American imagination.

All countries or groups make of their trials a legend or, as in the case of Europe, a dubious romance called ‘history.’ But no other country has ever made so successful and glamorous a romance out of genocide and slavery; therefore, perhaps, the word I am searching for is not idea, but ideal.

The American IDEAL, then, of sexuality appears to be rooted in the American IDEAL of masculinity. This ideal has created cowboys and Indians, good guys and bad guys, punks and studs, tough guys and softies, butch and f****t, black and white. It is an ideal so paralytically infantile that is is virtually forbidden—as an unpatriotic act—that the American boy evolve into the complexity of manhood.”
James Baldwin, The Price of the Ticket: Collected Nonfiction, 1948-1985
“It goes without saying, I believe, that if we understood ourselves better, we would damage ourselves less.”
James Baldwin, The Price of the Ticket: Collected Nonfiction, 1948-1985