Kurt Vonnegut Quotes (234 Quotes)



    The slaves were simply turned loose without any property. They were easily recognizable. They were black. They were suddenly free to go exploring.

    I said I wasn't interested, and she was bright enough to say that she wasn't really interested either. As things turned out, we both overestimated our apathies, but not that much.

    The fortifications have never been attacked, nor has any sane man ever proposed any reason why they should be attacked. They have never defended anything. Fourteen hundred persons are said to have died while building them. Of these fourteen hundred, about half are said to have been executed in public for substandard zeal.





    The umpire had comical news. The congregation had been theoretically spotted from the air by a theoretical enemy. They were all theoretically dead now. The theoretical corpses laughed and ate a hearty noontime meal.




    The things other people have put into my head, at any rate, do not fit together nicely, are often useless and ugly, are out of proportion with one another, are out of proportion with life as it really is outside my head.

    If I were a younger man, I would write a history of human stupidity; and I would climb to the top of Mount McCabe and lie down on my back with my history for a pillow; and I would take from the ground some of the blue-white poison that makes statues of men; and I would make a statue of myself, lying on my back, grinning horribly, and thumbing my nose at You Know Who.

    The heartbreaking necessity of lying about reality and the heartbreaking impossibilty of lying about it

    The New York Daily News suggested that my biggest war crime was not killing myself like a gentleman. Presumably Hitler was a gentleman.

    God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to always tell the difference.


    There are almost no characters in this story, and almost no dramatic confrontations, because most of the people in it are so sick and so much the listless playthings of enormous forces. One of the main effects of war, after all, is that people are discouraged from being characters.


    The Earthlings behaved at all times as though there were a big eye in the sky-as though that big eye were ravenous for entertainment.

    Ideas on earth were badges of friendship or enimity. Their content did not matter. Friends agreed with friends, in order to express friendliness. Enemies disagreed with enemies, in order to express enimity.

    The women all had big minds because they were big animals, but they didn't use them for this reason: unusual ideas could make enemies and the women, if they were going to achieve any sort of comfort and safety, needed all the friends they could get. So, in the interest of survival they trained themselves to be agreeing machines. All their minds had to do was to discover what other people were thinking and then they thought it too.





    Nobody talked much as the expedition crossed the moon. There was nothing appropriate to say. One thing was clear: Absolutely everybody in the city was supposed to be dead, regardless of what they were, and that anybody that moved in it represented a flaw in the design. There were to be no moon men at all.

    There in the hospital Billy was having an adventure very common among people without power in times of war: he was trying to prove to a willfully deaf and blind enemy that he is interesting to hear and see.

    Earl Moncrief, the butler, built his financial, procurement, and secret service organizations with the brute power of cash and a profound understanding of clever, malicious, discontented people who lived behind servile facades.

    The more pain I train myself to stand, the more I learn. You are afraid of pain now, Unk, but you won't learn anything if you don't invite the pain. And the more you learn, the gladder you will be to stand the pain.




    The mountebank told them that God was surely trying to kill them, possibly because He was through with them, and that they should have the good manners to die. This, as you can see, they did.


    He did not think of himself as a writer for the simple reason that the world had never allowed him to think of himself in this way.

    On Tralfamadore, says Billy Pilgrim, there isn't much interest in Jesus Christ. The Earthling figure who is most engaging to the Tralfamadorian mind, he says, is Charles Darwin - who taught that those who die are meant to die, that corpses are improvements. So it goes.

    There is one other book,. that can teach you everything you need to know about life...it's The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoyevsky, but that's not enough anymore.

    Every passing hour brings the Solar System forty three thousand miles closer to Globular Cluster M13 in Hercules - and still there are some misfits who insist that there is no such thing as progress.

    The righteously displeased crowds existed now in every part of the world. The total membership of the Churches of God the Utterly Indifferent was a good, round three billion. The young lions who had first taught the creed could now afford to be lambs, to contemplate such oriental mysteries as water trickling down a bell rope.




    It posed the question posed by all such stone piles.: how had puny men moved stones so big? And, like all such stone piles, it answered the question itself. Dumb terror had moved those stones so big

    The unity in every second of all time and all wandering mankind, all wandering womankind, all wandering children.



    One might be led to suspect that there were all sorts of things going on in the Universe which he or she did not thoroughly understand.

    There was a still life on Billy's bedside table-two pills, an ashtray with three lipstick-stained cigarettes in it, one cigarette still burning, and a glass of water. The water was dead. So it goes. Air was trying to get out of the dead water. Bubbles were clinging to the walls of the glass, too weak to climb out.



    More Kurt Vonnegut Quotations (Based on Topics)


    People - Time - World - War & Peace - Life - God - Mind - Friendship - America - Man - Enemy - Beauty - Hell - Love - Wisdom & Knowledge - Thought & Thinking - Books - Education - Name - View All Kurt Vonnegut Quotations

    More Kurt Vonnegut Quotations (By Book Titles)


    - Breakfast of Champions
    - Cat's Cradle
    - Mother Night
    - Slaughterhouse-Five
    - The Sirens of Titan

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