We only have one story. All novels, all poetry are built on the never-ending contest in ourselves of good and evil.
Our species is the only creative species, and it has only one creative instrument, the individual mind and spirit of man. Nothing was ever created by two men. There are no good collaborations, whether in music, in art, in poetry, in mathematics, in philosophy. Once the miracle of creation has taken place, the group can build and extend it, but the group never invents anything. The preciousness lies in the lonely mind of a man.
The church and the whorehouse arrived in the Far West simultaneously. And each would have been horrified to think it was a different facet of the same thing. But surely they were both intended to accomplish the same thing: the singing, the devotion, the poetry of the churches took a man out of his bleakness for a time, and so did the brothels.
I hold that a writer who does not passionately believe in the perfectibility of man has no dedication nor any membership in literature.
More John Steinbeck Quotations (Based on Topics)
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More John Steinbeck Quotations (By Book Titles)
- Cannery Row
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- The Grapes of Wrath
- The Pearl
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