Simon Schama Quotes

Enjoy the top 86 famous quotes, sayings and quotations by Simon Schama.

Simon Schama Quotes

The difficulty with poetry is that it doesnt have the life that Shakespeare or Jane Austen have beyond the page. You cant make a costume drama out of it. Theres no place for it to go except trapped inside its little book.
— Simon Schama —

Even for the most excitable preacher, there was nothing inherently sinful about a waffle.

— Simon Schama

In the early nineteenth century, with Enlightenment optimism soured by years of war and revolution, critics were skeptical of America's naive faith that it had reinvented politics.

— Simon Schama

It takes a perverse determination to drain that instinctive curiosity away and make history seem just remote, dead and disconnected from our contemporary reality. Conversely, it just takes skilful storytelling to recharge that connection to make the past come alive in our present.

— Simon Schama

We seem wired to grieve with greenery. Allowing the dead to dissolve into the earth, to become part of the cycle of the seasons, has, for millennia, held the promise of cheating mortality.

— Simon Schama

Jewish history has been in my cultural DNA since I was a child growing up in post-war London. In the midst of that dark, gray, lamenting monochromatic world of the '50s, I had a sense that both Jewish and English history were full of color and light and animation.

— Simon Schama

In Mesopotamia or Egypt, for example, the monarch had a god-like religious status. But this is not the case in Judaism. So that notion that religion can go on, when all the markers of power and trappings of monarchy disappear, ultimately serves the endurance of Judaism very well.

— Simon Schama

I actually think that history has fed off the restlessness of cyber space, of kind of the frantic, segmented nature of the way we lead our lives. People want to be connected.

— Simon Schama

The difficulty with poetry is that it doesn't have the life that Shakespeare or Jane Austen have beyond the page. You can't make a costume drama out of it. There's no place for it to go except trapped inside its little book.

— Simon Schama

From the very beginning, history wasn't content simply to be nostalgic fairytales; it wanted to make you think.

— Simon Schama

I understood when I was quite small that there were two special things about the Jews. That we'd endured for over 3,000 years despite everything that had been thrown at us, and that we had an extraordinarily dramatic story to tell.

— Simon Schama

History is admirably dangerous. It is not the soft option. Teachers need to be grown up and brave. Sensitivity is fine, but it stops at the door of honest narrative.

— Simon Schama

I am passionately invested in the survival of Israel and everything Israel represents. But I am extremely critical of much of its policy. I believe that the occupation must end. And if it doesn't, it will end Israel. I'm not in favor of settlements.

— Simon Schama

Charlie Hebdo: Satire was the father of true political freedom, born in the 18th century; the scourge of bigots and tyrants. Sing its praises.

— Simon Schama

Histories never conclude; they just pause their prose. Their stories are, if they are truthful, untidy affairs, resistant to windings-up and sortings-out. They beat raggedly on into the future ...

— Simon Schama

Almost everywhere else in Europe, the more military the state, the stronger the king - except in Britain. Here it was parliament, not the monarchy, who signed the cheques. The longer the war went on, the stronger parliament became, as the purse on which it sat grew bigger and bigger.

— Simon Schama

Charles was constitutionally incapable of being a constitutional monarch.

— Simon Schama

From 1789, perhaps even before that, it had been the willingness of politicians to exploit either the threat or the fact of violence that had given them the power to challenge constituted authority. Bloodshed was not the unfortunate by product of revolution, it was the source of energy.

— Simon Schama

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