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(About Man, Past, Society & Civilization, Woman)

Generally, women can't do this, but men retain the ancient ability to leave a family and a past. They just unhook themselves, like removing a fake beard, and skulk discreetly back into society, changed men. Unrecognizable.

("White Teeth")


More Quotes from Zadie Smith:


A trauma is something one repeats and repeats, after all, and this is the tragedy of the Iqbals--that they can't help but reenact the dash they once made from one land to another, from one faith to another, from one brown mother country into the pale, freckled arms of an imperial sovereign.
Zadie Smith

One just has to look at the thing from a perspective that interests you personally.
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These days, it feels to me like you make a devil's pact when you walk into this country. You hand over your passport at the check-in, you get stamped, you want to make a little money, get yourself started... but you mean to go back! Who would want to stay? Cold, wet, miserable; terrible food, dreadful newspapers - who would want to stay? In a place where you are never welcomed, only tolerated. Just tolerated. Like you are an animal finally house-trained.
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For ridding oneself of faith is like boiling seawater to retrieve the salt--something is gained but something is lost.
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Greeting cards routinely tell us everyone deserves love. No. Everyone deserves clean water. Not everyone deserves love all of the time.
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It wasn't like the spare rooms of immigrants - packed to the rafters with all that they have ever possessed, no matter how defective or damaged, mountains of odds and ends - the stand testament to the fact that they have things now, where before they had nothing.
Zadie Smith

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Based on Topics: Man Quotes, Past Quotes, Society & Civilization Quotes, Woman Quotes

Based on Keywords: discreetly, skulk, unhook, unrecognizable