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    hannah arendt Quotes

    To think and to be fully alive are the same.
    — Hannah Arendt
    Man's chief moral deficiency appears to be not his indiscretions but his reticence.
    — Hannah Arendt
    tags: morals 
     
    There is a strange interdependence between thoughtlessness and evil.
    — Hannah Arendt
    tags: evil 
     
    Nihilism is but the other side of conventionalism; its creed consists of negations of the current so-called positive values, to which it remains bound.
    — Hannah Arendt
    tags: value  positive 
     
    Clichés, stock phrases, adherence to conventional, standardized codes of expression and conduct have the socially recognized function of protecting us against reality.
    — Hannah Arendt
    tags: reality  stock 
     
    Education is the point at which we decide whether we love the world enough to assume responsibility for it and by the same token save it from that ruin which, except for renewal, except for the coming of the new and young, would be inevitable.
    — Hannah Arendt
    The greatest enemy of authority, therefore, is contempt, and the surest way to undermine it is laughter.
    — Hannah Arendt
    One of the greatest advantages of the totalitarian elites of the twenties and thirties was to turn any statement of fact into a question of motive.
    — Hannah Arendt
    It is better to suffer wrong than to do wrong, because you can remain the friend of the sufferer; who would want to be the friend of and have to live together with a murderer? Not even another murderer.
    — Hannah Arendt
    tags: live  friends  wrong 
     
    Slavery's crime against humanity did not begin when one people defeated and enslaved its enemies (though of course this was bad enough), but when slavery became an institution in which some men were 'born' free and others slave, when it was forgotten that it was man who had deprived his fellow-men of freedom, and when the sanction for the crime was attributed to nature.
    — Hannah Arendt
    The trouble with Eichmann was precisely that so many were like him, and that the many were neither perverted nor sadistic, that they were, and still are, terribly and terrifyingly normal. From the viewpoint of our legal institutions and of our moral standards of judgment, this normality was much more terrifying than all the atrocities put together.
    — Hannah Arendt
    tags: morals  standard 
     
    This is the precept by which I have lived: Prepare for the worst; expect the best; and take what comes.
    — Hannah Arendt
    Revolutionaries do not make revolutions. The revolutionaries are those who know when power is lying in the street and then they can pick it up.
    — Hannah Arendt
    tags: power  lying  revolution 
     
    The sad truth is that most evil is done by people who never make up their minds to be good or evil.
    — Hannah Arendt
    tags: evil  truth  people  sad  mind 
     
    the result of a consistent and total substitution of lies for factual truth is not that the lie will now be accepted as truth, and truth be defamed as lie, but that the sense by which we take our bearings in the real world - and the category of truth versus falsehood is among the mental means to this end - is being destroyed.
    — Hannah Arendt
    tags: truth  world  lies  mental  real 
     
    I'm more than ever of the opinion that a decent human existence is possible today only on the fringes of society, where one then runs the risk of starving or being stoned to death. In these circumstances, a sense of humor is a great help.
    — Hannah Arendt
    There are no dangerous thoughts; thinking itself is dangerous.
    — Hannah Arendt
    This inability to think created the possibility for many ordinary men to commit evil deeds on a gigantic scale, the like of which had never been seen before. The manifestation of the wind of thought is not knowledge but the ability to tell right from wrong, beautiful from ugly. And I hope that thinking gives people the strength to prevent catastrophes in these rare moments when the chips are down.
    — Hannah Arendt
    Politically speaking, tribal nationalism [patriotism] always insists that its own people are surrounded by 'a world of enemies' - 'one against all' - and that a fundamental difference exists between this people and all others. It claims its people to be unique, individual, incompatible with all others, and denies theoretically the very possibility of a common mankind long before it is used to destroy the humanity of man.
    — Hannah Arendt
    Politically, the weakness of the argument has always been that those who choose the lesser evil forget very quickly that they chose evil.
    — Hannah Arendt
    tags: evil  weakness 
     
    The history of humanity is not a hotel where someone can rent a room whenever it suits him; nor is it a vehicle which we board or get out of at random. Our past will be for us a burden beneath which we can only collapse for as long as we refuse to understand the present and fight for a better future. Only then-but from that moment on-will the burden become a blessing, that is, a weapon in the battle for freedom.
    — Hannah Arendt
    When evil is allowed to compete with good, evil has an emotional populist appeal that wins out unless good men and women stand as a vanguard against abuse.
    — Hannah Arendt
    tags: evil  men  women  abuse  emotional 
     
    Only the mob and the elite can be attracted by the momentum of totalitarianism itself. The masses have to be won by propaganda.
    — Hannah Arendt
    The ideal subject of totalitarian rule is not the convinced Nazi or the dedicated communist, but people for whom the distinction between fact and fiction, true and false, no longer exists.
    — Hannah Arendt
    tags: people  true  facts  rules  fiction 
     
    Loving life is easy when you are abroad. Where no one knows you and you hold your life in your hands all alone, you are more master of yourself than at any other time
    — Hannah Arendt
    tags: time  master  alone  loving 
     
    Forgiveness is the only way to reverse the irreversible flow of history.
    — Hannah Arendt
    tags: forgiveness 
     
    The most radical revolutionary will become a conservative the day after the revolution.
    — Hannah Arendt
    Political questions are far too serious to be left to the politicians.
    — Hannah Arendt
    The chief qualification of a mass leader has become unending infallibility; he can never admit an error.
    — Hannah Arendt
    tags: leader 
     
    I'm completely against [feminism]. I have no desire to give up my privileges.
    — Hannah Arendt
    tags: desires 
     
    Without being forgiven, released from the consequences of what we have done, our capacity to act would, as it were, be confined to one single deed from which we could never recover; we would remain the victims of its consequences forever.
    — Hannah Arendt
    Evil thrives on apathy and cannot exist without it.
    — Hannah Arendt
    tags: evil 
     
    The practice of violence, like all action, changes the world, but the most probable change is a more violent world.
    — Hannah Arendt
    The need of reason is not inspired by the quest for truth but by the quest for meaning. And truth and meaning are not the same. The basic fallacy , taking precedence over all specific metaphysical fallacies, is to interpret meaning on the model of truth.
    — Hannah Arendt
    tags: truth  meaning 
     
    Thought and action must never part company.
    — Hannah Arendt
    tags: thoughts  action  company 
     
    All political institutions are manifestations and materializations of power; they petrify and decay as soon as the living power of the people ceases to uphold them.
    — Hannah Arendt
    What I propose, therefore, is very simple: it is nothing more than to think what we are doing
    — Hannah Arendt
    The aim of totalitarian education has never been to instill convictions but to destroy the capacity to form any.
    — Hannah Arendt
    tags: education 
     
    The totalitarian attempt at global conquest and total domination has been the destructive way out of all impasses. Its victory may coincide with the destruction of humanity; wherever it has ruled, it has begun to destroy the essence of man.
    — Hannah Arendt
    tags: men  victory  destruction 
     
    Under conditions of tyranny it is far easier to act than to think.
    — Hannah Arendt
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