Norman Mailer Quotes

We live in a time which has created the art of the absurd. It is our art. It contains happenings, Pop art, camp, a theater of the absurd. . . . Do we have the art because the absurd is the patina of waste? . . . Or are we face to face with a desperate or most rational effort from the deepest resources of the unconscious of us all to rescue civilization from the pit and plague of its bedding?
No physical activity is so vain as boxing. A man gets into the ring to attract admiration. In no sport, therefore, can you be more humiliated.
If a person is not talented enough to be a novelist, not smart enough to be a lawyer, and his hands are too shaky to perform operations, he becomes a journalist.
I think it's bad to talk about one's present work, for it spoils something at the root of the creative act. It discharges the tension.
I had a quick grasp of the secret to sanity, it had become the ability to hold the maximum of impossible combinations in one's mind.
With the pride of the artist, you must blow against the walls of every power that exists the small trumpet of your defiance.
The night before I left Las Vegas I walked out in the desert to look at the moon. There was a jeweled city on the horizon, spires rising in the night, but the jewels were diadems of electric and the spires were the neon of signs ten stories high.
The condition that is most disagreeable in your life becomes the most useful one. You know, I feel the same way about the U.S. Army. It was absolutely the worst experience of my life, and it was probably the single most valuable experience.
It's not the sentiments of men which make history but their actions.
When the wind carries a cry which is meaningful to human ears, it is simpler to believe the wind shares with us some part of the emotion of Being than that the mysteries of a hurricane's rising murmur reduce to no more than the random collision of insensate molecules.
Horror films do not prepare us for the hours lost in searching after one clear thought.
Even an evil man can have principles —he can be true to his own evil, which is not always so easy.
Fascism is more of a natural state than democracy. To assume blithely that we can export democracy into any country we choose can serve paradoxically to encourage more fascism at home and abroad. Democracy is a state of grace that is attained only by those countries who have a host of individuals not only ready to enjoy freedom but to undergo the heavy labor of maintaining it.
The sense of a long last night over civilization is back again; it has perhaps not been here so intensely in thirty years, not since the Nazis were prospering, but it is coming back.
The women's movement is filled with tyrants, just as men's political movements are equally filled.
One thing I've learned in all these years is not to make love when you really don't feel it; there's probably nothing worse you can do to yourself than that.
Women think of being a man as a gift. It is a duty. Even making love can be a duty. A man has always got to get it up, and love isn't always enough.