Domination delegates the physical violence on which it rests to the dominated.
No harm comes to man from outside alone: dumbness is the objective spirit.
Horror is beyond the reach of psychology.
Truth is inseperable from the illusory belief that from the figures of the unreal one day, in spite of all, real deliverance will come.
He who integrates is lost.
Art is permitted to survive only if it renounces the right to be different, and integrates itself into the omnipotent realm of the profane.
For a man who no longer has a homeland, writing becomes a place to live.
If time is money, it seems moral to save time, above all one's own, and such parsimony is excused by consideration for others. One is straight-forward.
Love is the power to see similarity in the dissimilar.
The gods look in pleasure on penitent sinners.
In many people it is already an impertinence to say 'I'.
But he who dies in despair has lived his whole life in vain.
Tact is the discrimination of differences. It consists in conscious deviations.
None of the abstract concepts comes closer to fulfilled utopia than that of eternal peace.
Everything that has ever been called folk art has always reflected domination.
The man for whom time stretches out painfully is one waiting in vain, disappointed at not finding tomorrow already continuing yesterday.
To say 'we' and mean 'I' is one of the most recondite insults.
Only a humanity to whom death has become as indifferent as its members, that has itself died, can inflict it administratively on innumerable people.
The culture industry not so much adapts to the reactions of its customers as it counterfeits them.
The task of art today is to bring chaos into order.
Quality is decided by the depth at which the work incorporates the alternatives within itself, and so masters them.
The human is indissolubly linked with imitation: a human being only becomes human at all by imitating other human beings.
He who has laughter on his side has no need of proof.
No emancipation without that of society.
The splinter in your eye is the best magnifying-glass.
Advice to intellectuals: let no-one represent you.
Work while you work, play while you play - this is a basic rule of repressive self-discipline.
All satire is blind to the forces liberated by decay. Which is why total decay has absorbed the forces of satire.
The whole is the false.
Lies are told only to convey to someone that one has no need either of him or his good opinion.
Proletarian language is dictated by hunger. The poor chew words to fill their bellies.
A pencil and rubber are of more use to thought than a battalion of assistants. To happiness the same applies as to truth: one does not have it, but is in it.
The almost insoluble task is to let neither the power of others, nor our own powerlessness, stupefy us.
The specific is not exclusive: it lacks the aspiration to totality.
If across the Atlantic the ideology was pride, here it is delivering the goods.
The most powerful person is he who is able to do least himself and burden others most with the things for which he lends his name and pockets the credit.
He who stands aloof runs the risk of believing himself better than others and misusing his critique of society as an ideology for his private interest.
He who has loved and who betrays love does harm not only to the image of the past, but to the past itself.
The joke of our time is the suicide of intention.
In the end, glorification of splendid underdogs is nothing other than glorification of the splendid system that makes them so.
In the abstract conception of universal wrong, all concrete responsibility vanishes.
Wrong life cannot be lived rightly.
The poor are prevented from thinking by the discipline of others, the rich by their own.
Fascism is itself less 'ideological', in so far as it openly proclaims the principle of domination that is elsewhere concealed.
Not only is the self entwined in society; it owes society its existence in the most literal sense.
Once the last trace of emotion has been eradicated, nothing remains of thought but absolute tautology.
He who matures early lives in anticipation.
The good man is he who rules himself as he does his own property: his autonomous being is modelled on material power.
Freedom would be not to choose between black and white but to abjure such prescribed choices.
The recent past always presents itself as if destroyed by catastrophes.
More Theodor Adorno Quotations (Based on Topics)
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Sun Tzu - John Stuart Mill - Friedrich Nietzsche - Deepak Chopra - Aristotle - Roger Bacon - Mencius - Maimonides - Diogenes - Antisthenes