Brain Pickings

Reads tagged with “Italo Calvino”

How Reading Is Like Love: Italo Calvino on the Ecstasy of Surrendering to Other Dimensions of Experience
How Reading Is Like Love: Italo Calvino on the Ecstasy of Surrendering to Other Dimensions of Experience

“Lovers’ reading of each other’s bodies… differs from the reading of written pages in that it is not linear… What makes lovemaking and reading resemble each other most is that within both of them times and spaces open, different from measurable time and space.”

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The Psychology of What Makes a Great Story
The Psychology of What Makes a Great Story

“The great writer’s gift to a reader is to make him a better writer.”

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The Art of Quickness: Italo Calvino on Digression as a Hedge Against Death and the Key to Great Writing
The Art of Quickness: Italo Calvino on Digression as a Hedge Against Death and the Key to Great Writing

“Success consists in felicity of verbal expression, which every so often may result from a quick flash of inspiration but as a rule involves a patient search… for the sentence in which every word is unalterable.”

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The Hedgehog and the Fox: Italo Calvino on the Two Types of Writers
The Hedgehog and the Fox: Italo Calvino on the Two Types of Writers

“I am a fox, even though I dream of being a hedgehog in all my dreams, and even though I try to write hedgehog books if you take each of them one by one.”

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Italo Calvino on Distraction, Procrastination, and Newspapers as the Proto-Time-Waster
Italo Calvino on Distraction, Procrastination, and Newspapers as the Proto-Time-Waster

“Every day I tell myself that reading newspapers is a waste of time, but then … I cannot do without them. They are like a drug.”

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Italo Calvino on Racial Justice: The Beloved Italian Writer’s Stirring Account of the Early Civil Rights Movement and His Encounter with Martin Luther King, Jr.
Italo Calvino on Racial Justice: The Beloved Italian Writer’s Stirring Account of the Early Civil Rights Movement and His Encounter with Martin Luther King, Jr.

“What counts is what we are, and the way we deepen our relationship with the world and with others, a relationship that can be one of both love for all that exists and of desire for its transformation.”

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Italo Calvino on Photography and the Art of Presence
Italo Calvino on Photography and the Art of Presence

“The life that you live in order to photograph it is already, at the outset, a commemoration of itself.”

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Italo Calvino on the Unbearable Lightness of Language, Literature, and Life
Italo Calvino on the Unbearable Lightness of Language, Literature, and Life

“The idea of the world as composed of weightless atoms is striking just because we know the weight of things so well.”

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19-Year-Old Italo Calvino on How to Assert Yourself and Live with Integrity
19-Year-Old Italo Calvino on How to Assert Yourself and Live with Integrity

“Asserting oneself … doesn’t mean asserting a name and a person. It means asserting oneself with all that one has inside, and what he has inside, underneath that pigeon chest, is taking on more and more precise contours.”

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How to Lower Your “Worryability”: Italo Calvino’s 1950 New Year’s Resolution
How to Lower Your “Worryability”: Italo Calvino’s 1950 New Year’s Resolution

“I would like this to signal the end of ‘wasted angst’ in my life.”

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