Brain Pickings

Reads tagged with “interviews”

Elizabeth Alexander on How Great Artists Orient Themselves to Light of the World
Elizabeth Alexander on How Great Artists Orient Themselves to Light of the World

“Art that speaks to any of us always comes from a very particular place, and then we find ourselves in it in some kind of way.”

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Patti Smith on Listening to the Creative Impulse and the Crucial Difference Between Writing Poetry and Songwriting
Patti Smith on Listening to the Creative Impulse and the Crucial Difference Between Writing Poetry and Songwriting

“In times of strife, we have our imagination, we have our creative impulse, which are things that are more important than material things. They are the things that we should magnify.”

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There Is a Crack in Everything, That’s How the Light Gets In: Leonard Cohen on Democracy and Its Redemptions
There Is a Crack in Everything, That’s How the Light Gets In: Leonard Cohen on Democracy and Its Redemptions

A generous reminder that we must aim for “a revelation in the heart rather than a confrontation or a call-to-arms or a defense.”

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Broadcasters of the Self: Ian McEwan on Our Age of Identity and How the Politics of Modern Selfhood Imperils the Art of Listening
Broadcasters of the Self: Ian McEwan on Our Age of Identity and How the Politics of Modern Selfhood Imperils the Art of Listening

“When you make the self the outer limit of your politics, you then begin to ignore a great deal of the attitudes, situations, dilemmas, misery of others.”

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Alain de Botton on Love, Vulnerability, and the Psychological Paradox of the Sulk
Alain de Botton on Love, Vulnerability, and the Psychological Paradox of the Sulk

“If we are not regularly deeply embarrassed by who we are, the journey to self-knowledge hasn’t begun.”

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Oliver Sacks on Evolving Our Notions of Normalcy to Include the Differently Abled
Oliver Sacks on Evolving Our Notions of Normalcy to Include the Differently Abled

“If a tenth or a quarter of the population have some condition, it has to be accepted as a legitimate form of life.”

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Leonard Cohen on Moonlight, the Mystique of Creativity, His Influences, and Why He Loves It When People Cover His Songs
Leonard Cohen on Moonlight, the Mystique of Creativity, His Influences, and Why He Loves It When People Cover His Songs

“It’s also very difficult to untangle influences because you represent the sum of everything you’ve seen or heard or experienced.”

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Leonard Bernstein on Cynicism, Instant Gratification, and Why Paying Attention Is a Countercultural Act of Courage and Resistance
Leonard Bernstein on Cynicism, Instant Gratification, and Why Paying Attention Is a Countercultural Act of Courage and Resistance

“There is so much inherent goodness in people that if they aren’t inhibited by traumas and are given half a chance, it shines through.”

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Wave: A Most Unusual Coloring Book by English Artist Shantell Martin, Inspired by Life in Japan
Wave: A Most Unusual Coloring Book by English Artist Shantell Martin, Inspired by Life in Japan

An illustrated ode to the art of affectionate surrender to the ebb and flow of existence.

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Urbanism Patron Saint Jane Jacobs on Our Civic Duty in Cultivating Cities That Foster a Creative Life
Urbanism Patron Saint Jane Jacobs on Our Civic Duty in Cultivating Cities That Foster a Creative Life

“People ought to pay more attention to their instincts.”

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