More Quotes from Women


Only when an organization exists in stable circumstances, when its operations resemble clockwork, unvarying in their practices, can individuals be taken for granted or ignored without peril. -- Rosabeth Moss-Kanter: The Change Masters

Once upon a time a man dragged his father from their house and as they reached a tree his father cried "Stop! I did not drag my own father past this tree!" --Gertrude Stein, from "The Making of Americans"

Mistakes are part of the dues that one pays for a full life -- Sophia Loren

I always though that the great high privilege, relief and comfort of friend ship was that one had to explain nothing -- Katherine Mansfield

The mind itself is an art object. It is a Mondrian canvas onto whose homemade grids it fits its own preselected products. Our knowledge is contextual and only contextual. Ordering and invention coincide: we call their collaboration "knowledge." The mind is a blue guitar on which we improvise the song of the world. -- Annie Dillard, Living by Fiction

In the Orthodox spiritual tradition, the ultimate moral question we ask is the following: Is what we are doing, is what I am doing, beautiful or not? -- Carolyn Gifford (Orthodox Theologian) "Woman and Nature: The Roaring Inside Her"

To the Primal Wonders...you shall win them yourself, in sweat, sun, laughter, in dust and rain, with only a few companions. -- Nancy Newhall, 1960

The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don't have any. -- Alice Walker

Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born. -- Anais Nin

Age doesn't matter unless you are a cheese. -- Billie Burke

"You must do the thing you think you cannot do." -- Eleanor Roosevelt

Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. The fearful are caught as often as the bold. --Helen Keller

You can't be brave if you've only had wonderful things happen to you... -- Mary Tyler Moore

One wonders what would happen in a society in which there were no rules to break. Doubtless everyone would quickly die of boredom. -- Susan Howitch

What's all this crap about the perfect man? I'd settle for one who has his own car and a steady job. -- Mary Rockne

When we were growing up, I used to sit on the front porch and look at our street number [999 30th St. SW] upside down and wonder if I was a child of the Devil. -- Mary Rockne

Good communication is as stimulating as black coffee, and just as hard to sleep after. -- Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Experience: a comb life gives you after you lose your hair. -- Judith Stern

"Courage is like a muscle. We strengthen it with use." -- Ruth Gordon

"When I have something to say that is too difficult for adults, I write for children. They have not closed the shutters. They like it when you rock the boat." -- Madeline L'Engle

"You need only claim the events of your life to make yourself yours. When you truly possess all that you have been and done, which may take some time, you are fierce with reality." -- Florida Scott Maxwell

Having someone wonder where you are when you don't come home at night is a very old human need. -- Margaret Mead

My true friends have always given me that supreme proof of devotion ... a spontaneous aversion for the man I loved. -- Colette

Really that little dealybob is too far away from the hole. It should be built right in. -- Loretta Lynn (on the female body)

My family can always tell when I'm well into a novel because the meals get very crummy. -- Anne Tyler

Can you image anybody wanting to look this way for real? -- Dolly Parton

I'd like to do a love scene with him just to see what all the yelling is about. -- Shirley MacLaine about her brother, Warren Beatty

You'd be surprised how much it costs to look this cheap. -- Dolly Parton

As President Nixon says, presidents can do almost anything, and President Nixon has done many things that nobody would have thought of doing. -- Golda Meir

That's the point of quotations, you know: one can use another's words to be insulting. -- Amanda Cross

Where did your Christ come from? From God and a woman! Man had nothing to do with him. -- Sojourner Truth

Ducking for apples -- change one letter and it's the story of my life. -- Dorothy Parker

Television has proved that people will look at anything rather than each other. -- Ann Landers

As a cousin of mine once said about money, money is always there but the pockets change; it is not in the same pockets after a change, and that is all there is to day about money. -- Gertrude Stein

An atheist may be simply one whose faith and love are concentrated on the impersonal aspects of God. -- Simone Weil

"Excuse me, I have to use the toilet. Actually, I have to use the telephone, but I'm too embarrassed to say so." -- Dorothy Parker

"You may be disappointed if you fail, but you are doomed if you don't try." -- Beverly Sills

"The essential conditions of everything you do must be choice, love, passion." -- Nadia Boulanger

We are entitled to wear cowboy boots to our own revolution. -- Naomi Wolf, The Beauty Myth

"I know God will not give me anything I can't handle. I just wish he didn't trust me so much." -- Mother Teresa

"Here's a little song that puts the 'cunt' back into country and western . . ." -- Rosanne Cash

Oprah Winfrey (upon waking one morning) "Please God, I've got enough character today...."

"By all accounts, sex is a personally encoded communique, continually reinvented." - Julia Hutton, from the introduction to "Good Sex"

"Given the expectations of society at large, men are generally correct in their assumption that it is important for a woman to have a man. What they do not understand is how pathetically little difference it makes *what* man." -- Gloria Steinham

"I myself have never been able to find out precisely what feminism is. I only know that people call me a feminist when I express sentiments that differentiate me from a doormat or a prostitute." -- Dame Rebecca West

"We cannot afford not to fight for growth and understanding, even when it is painful, as it is bound to be." from "Journal of a Solitude" by May Sarton

"The mind limits. If you believe you've lost your wallet, you can't buy a thing." -- M Normal

"In June of 1987, men will begin talking about their feelings; women all over America will be sorry within minutes." -- Nicole Hollander, Thinner Thighs for Everyone

Art is the only way to run away without leaving Home. -- Twyla Tharp, choreographer

The fastest way to a man's heart is through his chest. -- paraphrased Roseanne

"My true friends have always given me that supreme proof of devotion, a spontaneous aversion for the man I loved." -- Colette

"You don't know a woman until you've had a letter from her." -- Ada Leverson, 1862-1933

"Somewhere out in this audience may even be someone who will one day follow in my footsteps, and preside over the White House as the president's spouse. I wish him well." -- First lady Barbara Bush at Wellesley College 1990 commencement.

"I once complained to my father that I didn't seem to be able to do things the same way other people did. Dad's advice? 'Margo, don't be a sheep. People hate sheep. They eat sheep.'" -- Margo Kaufman

Being called a poetess brings out the terroristress in me. -- Audre Lord

We don't see things as they are, we see things as we are. -- Anais Nin

We can do no great things, only small things with great love. -- Mother Theresa

Joy is a net of love with which you can catch souls. -- Mother Theresa

To others we are not ourselves but a performer in their lives cast for a part we do not even know that we are playing. -- Elizabeth Bibesco, Haven, 1951

It is not at all uncommon for someone to arrive at a scene or brutality or injustice and, with a sympathetic murmur or heroic flourish, attack the victim. It happens all the time. -- Renata Adler, "Speedboat", 1977

House-keeping ain't no joke. -- Louisa May Alcott, "Little Women", 1868

Experience is a good teacher, but she sends in terrific bills. -- Minna Antrim, Naked Truth and Veiled Allusions, 1902

"In politics, if you want anything said, ask a man; if you want anything done, ask a woman." -- Margaret Thatcher

"'You must write,' she said, administering the most exquisite flattery that human lips could give." -- Edith Wharton, "The Muse's Tragedy"

"More tears are shed over answered prayers than unanswered ones." -- St. Theresa of Avila

Life beats down and crushes the soul and art reminds you that you have one. -- Stella Adler

And my priest says "You ain't savin' no souls" My father says "You ain't makin' any money" My doctor says "You just took it to the limit" And here I stand with this sword in my hand --Tori Amos, "Take to the Sky"

"The perils of ambulatory reading. If you have never said "Excuse me" to a parking meter or bashed your shins on a fireplug, you are probably wasting too much valuable reading time." --Sherri Chasin Calvo

"It's [postings] ones and zeroes like a baby's cry is vibrations traveling through earth's atmosphere or like a book is ink spilled onto a paper product." -- Janet E. Harrison

It's just so uninteresting to live without love. Life has not risk. Love just seems to make life not just livable, but a gallant, gallant event. -- Toni Morrison

"The bicycle is just as good company as most husbands and, when it gets old and shabby, a woman can dispose of it and get a new one without shocking the entire community." -- Ann Strong, Minneapolis Tribune, 1895

Some rainy winter Sundays when there's a little boredom, you should always carry a gun. Not to shoot yourself, but to know exactly that you're always making a choice. -- Lina Wertmuller

I still believe that people are really good at heart. I simply can't build up my hopes on a foundation consisting of confusion, misery and death. -- Anne Frank

"Well, he didn't know what to do, so he decided to look at the government, to see what they did, and scale it down and run his life that way." -- Laurie Anderson

"If I could tell you what it meant, there would be no point in dancing it." -- Isadora Duncan

Life was meant to be lived, and curiosity must be kept alive. One must never, for whatever reason, turn his back on life. -- Eleanor Roosevelt

As the people here grow colder - I turn to my computer And spend my evenings with it - Like a friend. -- Kate Bush

In real love you want the other person's good. In romantic love, you want the other person. -- Margaret Anderson

To be alive is Power Existence in itself Without a further function Omnipotence enough. -- Emily Dickinson

Although the world is full of suffering, it is also full of the overcoming of it. -- Helen Keller

When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but really loves you, then you become real. -- Margery Wilson

When one is a stranger to oneself then one is estranged from others too. -- Anne Morrow Lindberg

"Creative minds always have been known to survive any kind of bad training." -- Anna Freud

"Jesus died for somebody's sins, but not mine." -- Patti Smith

"Evolution is what it is. The upper classes have always died out; it's one of the most charming things about them." -- Germaine Greer

"Cynicism is an unpleasant way of saying the truth." -- Lillian Hellman

"The real fountain of youth is to have a dirty mind." -- Model Jerry Hall, The Original Max Talking Headroom Show

what urge will save us now that sex won't? -- Jenny Holzer, word artist

They said "Well, actually, we had something a little bit more... ADULT in mind." And I said "Uh... Okay! Okay! I can adapt!" -- Laurie Anderson, "Yankee See"

There is a difference between art and life and that difference is readability. -- Marian Engel

Nobody can be exactly like me. Sometimes even I have trouble doing it. -- Tallulah Bankhead

"Oh no. She used the three name call." -- Clarissa (Marie) Darling

"If I actually believed that the progress of human understanding depended on our crop of contemporary novelists, I would shoot myself." -- Annie Dillard, Living By Fiction

"There is no reason to think a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens cannot change the world; indeed, that's the only thing that ever has." -- Margaret Mead

"The true secret of giving advice is, after you have honestly given it, to be perfectly indifferent whether it is taken or not and never persist in trying to set people right." -- Hannah Whitall Smith

"...nothing gratifies one more than to be admired for doing what one likes." -- Dorothy L. Sayers

"Just the knowledge that a good book is awaiting one at the end of a long day makes that day happier." -- Kathleen Norris

"Federal Expresso: When you absolutely, positively, have to stay up all night." -- Diane Reamy

"Do not meddle in the affairs of cats, for they are subtle and will piss on your computer." -- Elisabeth Riba

"No entertainment is so cheap as reading, nor any pleasure so lasting." -- Lady Mary Wortley Montagu

"On the strength of his literary output alone... any woman of sense would decline to tackle D.H. Lawrence at 1,000 pounds a night." -- Dorothy L. Sayers

"You have been told that Real Life is not like college, and you have been correctly informed. Real Life is more like high school." -- Commencement Address by Meryl Streep

"Every devil I meet becomes a friend of mine." -- Indigo Girls

"I, for one, get rather annoyed when I settle into a nice bubble bath with some Belgian chocolate and a mystery at my side only to discover that all of the characters in the latter are still alive at the end." -- Miriam Nadel

"Those Macintoshes aren't the cute little boxes you think they are." -- Elizabeth Zwicky

"The Bible doesn't forbid suicide. It's Catholic directive, intended to slow down their loss of martyrs." -- Ellen Blackstone

"It was the dumbest thing I had ever seen, but it's a family thing, and I guess it's clean." -- Barbara Bush re: The Simpsons

"Nor do I agree with the viewpoint of the Libertarians, who seem to think that citizenship carries with it an inalienable right to selfishness." -- Heidi Wolf

"Instant gratification is not fast enough." -- Suzanne Vega, "Postcards from the Edge"

"The main difference between men and women is that men are lunatics and women are idiots." -- Rebecca West

"Freud is the father of psychoanalysis. It has no mother." -- Germaine Greer

"When in doubt, act like Myrna Loy." -- Cynthia Heimel

"I love children, especially when they cry, for then someone takes them away." -- Nancy Mitford

"Now poison's good, and daggers, and arrows in the back; And if you're really desperate you can try a front attack. But why commit a murder, and risk the fires of hell, When black widows in the privy will do it just as well?" -- Heather Rose Jones

"Brevity is the soul of lingerie." -- Dorothy Parker

"It's not brain surgery. It's not nuclear physics. It's television. It's only television." -- Linda Ellerbee

"One must think like a hero to behave like a merely decent human being." -- May Sarton

"We're mostly sympathetic, only occasionally empathic, and very very very rarely telepathic." -- Kathy Li

"I like men to behave like men -- strong and childish." -- Francoise Sagan

"When a network changes a show, it's like brain surgery with a baseball bat." -- Stephanie A. Wiltse

"The word love has by no means the same sense for both sexes, and this is one cause of the serious misunderstandings that divide them." -- Simone de Beauvoir

"A bad review is like baking a cake with all the best ingredients and having someone sit on it." -- Danielle Steel

"Superstition is foolish, childish and irrational -- but how much does it cost you to knock on wood?" -- Judith Viorst

"How I wait for my good is more important than what I wait for. Life is not living in a 'waiting room', but rather waiting in a 'living room'." -- Dr. Dorothy Kobak

"You may be imperious, but the effect is always spoiled when you apologize." -- Karen Williams

"Life is better than death, I believe, if only because it is less boring, and because it has fresh peaches in it." -- Alice Walker

"You can't take sides when you know the earth is round." -- Patricia Sun

"Love... is the extremely difficult realization that something other than oneself is real." -- Iris Murdoch

"I'd rather be a woman than a man. Women can cry, they can wear cute clothes, and they're first to be rescued off sinking ships." -- Gilda Radner

"Trouble is like a sieve through which we sift our acquaintances. Those too big to pass through are our friends." -- Arlene Francis

"Anxiety is love's greatest killer. It makes others feel as you might when a drowning man holds on to you. You want to save him, but you know he will strangle you with his panic." -- Anais Nin

"But she could not prevent other people from suffering for her principles. That seems to be what principles are for, somehow..." -- Peter Death Bredon Wimsey [Dorothy Sayers]

"This book should not be set lightly aside, but hurled, with great force." -- Dorothy Parker

"I'm not happy, I'm cheerful. There's a difference. A happy woman has no cares at all. A cheerful woman has cares but has learned how to deal with them." -- Beverly Sills

"Suffering is not good for the soul, unless it teaches you to stop suffering." -- Jane Roberts

"A sobering thought, Eileen: What if, right at this very moment I *am* living up to my full potential?" -- Jane Wagner

"To me, the term 'sexual freedom' meant freedom from having to have sex." -- Jane Wagner

"I think you should know I worry a lot. Like the Noble sperm bank. Something bothers me about the world's greatest geniuses sitting around reading pornography and jerking off." -- Jane Wagner

"Man invented language to satisfy his deep need to complain." -- Jane Wagner

"Sometimes I worry about being a success in a mediocre world." -- Lily Tomlin

"The apes were all homosexuals, eager to wrap their paws around Johnny's thighs. They were jealous of me, and I loathed them." -- Maureen O'Sullivan

"The poor wish to be rich, the rich wish to be happy, the single wish to be married, and the married wish to be dead." -- Ann Landers

"I refuse to believe that trading recipes is silly. Tuna-fish casserole is at least as real as corporate stock." -- Barbara Grizzuti Harrison

"The average, healthy, well-adjusted adult gets up at 7:30 in the morning feeling just plain terrible." -- Jean Kerr

"Everywhere I go I'm asked if I think the university stifles writers. My opinion is that they don't stifle enough of them. There's many a bestseller that could have been prevented by a good teacher." -- Flannery O'Connor

"Did you ever walk into a room and forget why you walked in? I think that's how dogs spend their lives." -- Sue Murphy

"Our parents were of Midwestern stock and very strict. They didn't want us to grow up to be spoiled and rich. If we left our tennis racquets in the rain, we were punished." -- Nancy Ellis, George Bush's sister

"If we don't change, we don't grow. If we don't grow, we are not really living. Growth demands a temporary surrender of security." -- Gail Sheehy

"No trumpets sound when the important decisions of our life are made. Destiny is made known silently." -- Agnes De Mille

"The best index to a person's character is a) how he treats people who can't do him any good and b) how he treats people who can't fight back." -- Abigail Van Buren

"Never face facts; if you do, you'll never get up in the morning." -- Marlo Thomas

"Only the hypocrite is really rotten to the core." -- Hannah Arendt

"If truth is beauty, how come no one has their hair done in the library?" -- Lily Tomlin

A fool without fear is sometimes wiser than an angel with fear. -- Nancy Astor

``If we would only give, just once, the same amount of reflection to what we want to get out of life that we give to the question of what to do with a two weeks' vacation, we would be startled at our false standards and the aimless procession of our busy days.'' -- Dorothy Canfield Fisher, American author and essayist (1879-1958).

"Dr. Chumley, my mother used to say to me, `In this world, Elwood' -- she always called me Elwood -- she'd say, `In this world, Elwood, you must be oh, so smart or oh, so pleasant.' For years I was smart. I recommend pleasant. You may quote me." -- The philosophy of Elwood P. Dowd in the play "Harvey" by Mary Chase (1907-1981)

``Everybody gets so much information all day long that they lose their common sense.'' -- Gertrude Stein, American author (1874-1946)

``Private opinion creates public opinion.... That is why private opinion, and private behavior, and private conversation are so terrifyingly important.'' -- Jan Struther (nee Joyce Anstruther), English poet (1901-1953)

``The best thing to do with the best things in life is to give them up.'' -- Dorothy Day, American social activist (1897-1980)



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