Ismail Kadare Quotes

Enjoy the top 55 famous quotes, sayings and quotations by Ismail Kadare.

Ismail Kadare Quotes

Having spent the greater part of my life under a Communist dictatorship, I am very familiar with the Bolshevik mentality according to which an author in general, and an eminent author in particular, is always guilty, and must be punished accordingly.
— Ismail Kadare —

It was only a phrase that went from mouth to mouth and was never quite swallowed.

— Ismail Kadare

To tell the truth, this was one of the few cases in which she had not told him just what she was thinking. Usually, she let him know whatever thoughts happened to come to her, and indeed he never took it amiss if she let slip a word that might pain him, because when all was said and done that was the price one paid for sincerity.

— Ismail Kadare

If an animal has to be sacrificed when a new bridge is built, what will it take to build a whole new world?

— Ismail Kadare

Can a country's people be better than its planes?

— Ismail Kadare

Not a single thought managed to take shape in her mind: for the likeness of this day to the last seemed to her the clearest proof that it would be another quite useless day, a day she would gladly have done without. For a moment she thought that a day like this would be pointless for anyone on earth, then abruptly changed her mind as she realised that thousands of women, after a hard week's work, or a family quarrel, or even just after catching a cold, would envy her just for having the leisure to rest in comfort.

— Ismail Kadare

Every passion or wicked thought, every affliction or crime, every rebellion or catastrophe necessarily casts its shadow before it long before it manifests itself in real life.

— Ismail Kadare

At street corners, where walls join, I thought I could see some familiar features, like outlines of human faces, the shadows of cheekbones and eyebrows. They are really there, caught in stone for all time, along with the marks left by earthquakes, winters and scourges wrought by men.

— Ismail Kadare

This is where they keep the dreams about the end of the world, according to the inhabitants of places where the winters are very windy.

— Ismail Kadare

A mountaineer's house, before being his home and the home of his family, is the home of God and of guests.

— Ismail Kadare

Why the Albanians had created the institution of the guest, exalting it above all other human relations, even those of kinship. "Perhaps the answer lies in the democratic character of this institution," he said, setting himself to think his way through the matter. "Any ordinary man, on any day, can be raised to the lofty station of a guest. The path to that temporary deification is open to anybody at any time.[ ... ] Given that anyone at all can grasp the sceptre of the guest," he went on, "and since that sceptre, for every Albanian, surpasses even the king's sceptre, may we not assume that in the Albanian's life of danger and want, that to be a guest if only for four hours or twenty-four hours, is a kind of respite, a moment of oblivion, a truce, a reprieve, and-why not?-an escape from everyday life into some divine reality?

— Ismail Kadare

My streets, my cistern. My old house. Its beams, floorboards and staircase creaked slightly, almost imperceptibly, with a dry, uniform, almost constant cracking sound. What's wrong? Where does it hurt? It seemed to be complaining of aches in its bones, in its centuries-old joints.

— Ismail Kadare

Albania's future is towards Christianity, since it is connected with it culturally, old memories, and its pre-Turkish nostalgia. With the passing of time, the late Islamic religion that came with the Ottomans should evaporate (at first in Albania and then in Kosova), until it will be replaced by Christianity or, to be more exact, Christian culture. Thus from one evil (the prohibition of religion in 1967) goodness will come. The Albanian nation will make a great historical correction that will accelerate its unity with its mother continent: Europe

— Ismail Kadare

I thought for a long time about leaving Albania, but at the same time to play a role in its life.

— Ismail Kadare

Literature led me to freedom, not the other way round.

— Ismail Kadare

For a writer, New York works well. Literary work is very elitist. I worked two hours a day, maximum, and the time after that was very agreeable. I walked a lot with pleasure. Those two hours augmented the day. I wrote more here than in Paris, an entire chapter of a new novel.

— Ismail Kadare

I work only in the morning from 10 to noon. I still write by hand. I interrupt my writing when I feel that I've discovered something beautiful or, on the contrary, when I feel discontent.

— Ismail Kadare

If I manage to write something that I consider good and valuable in a particular place, that spot automatically has a special aura for me. In Albania, there are two cities where I have written the majority of my work: Gjirokaster, my home city, and Tirana.

— Ismail Kadare

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