Frasi di Henri Barbusse

Henri Barbusse foto
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Henri Barbusse

Data di nascita: 17. Maggio 1873
Data di morte: 30. Agosto 1935

Pubblicità

Henri Barbusse è stato uno scrittore, giornalista e attivista politico comunista francese.

Barbusse costituisce il nodo qualificante della cultura francese degli anni venti, più di Marcel Proust, di André Gide e di André Malraux.. Secondo Giovanna Secchi questo giudizio, espresso da Jean Fréville, può essere considerato tendenzioso ma " in quegli anni cruciali per la formazione dei movimenti e partiti organizzati della sinistra, contro i dilaganti nazionalismi e fascismi, appare corretto vedere Barbusse come un preciso punto di riferimento, sia da parte della critica militante, che dello studioso del fatto letterario attento alle svolte che la storia sa imporre.

Frasi Henri Barbusse

Pubblicità

„I have searched, I have indistinctly seen, I have doubted. Now, I hope.“

— Henri Barbusse
Context: The eye is lost in all directions among the desolation where the multitude of men and women are hiding, as always and as everywhere. That is what is. Who will say, "That is what must be!" I have searched, I have indistinctly seen, I have doubted. Now, I hope.

„The principle of the equal rights of every living being and the sacred will of the majority is infallible and must be invincible; all progress will be brought about by it, all, with a force truly divine. It will bring first the smooth bed-rock of all progress — the settling of quarrels by that justice which is exactly the same thing as the general advantage.“

— Henri Barbusse
Context: I tell them that fraternity is a dream, an obscure and uncertain sentiment; that while it is unnatural for a man to hate one whom he does not know, it is equally unnatural to love him. You can build nothing on fraternity. Nor on liberty, either; it is too relative a thing in a society where all the elements subdivide each other by force. But equality is always the same. Liberty and fraternity are words while equality is a fact. Equality should be the great human formula — social equality, for while individuals have varying values, each must have an equal share in the social life; and that is only just, because the life of one human being is equal to the life of another. That formula is of prodigious importance. The principle of the equal rights of every living being and the sacred will of the majority is infallible and must be invincible; all progress will be brought about by it, all, with a force truly divine. It will bring first the smooth bed-rock of all progress — the settling of quarrels by that justice which is exactly the same thing as the general advantage.

Pubblicità

„Only the idolatrous and the weak have need of illusion as of a remedy.“

— Henri Barbusse
Context: Only the idolatrous and the weak have need of illusion as of a remedy. The rest only need see and speak. She smiles, vague as an angel, hovering in the purity of the evening between light and darkness. I am so near to her that I must kneel to be nearer still. I kiss her wet face and soft lips, holding her hand in both of mine. Yes, there is a Divinity, one from which we must never turn aside for the guidance of our huge inward life and of the share we have as well in the life of all men. It is called the truth.

„The truth is that the love of mankind is a single season among so many others. The truth is that we have within us something much more mortal than we are, and that it is this, all the same, which is all-important.“

— Henri Barbusse
Context: The truth is that the love of mankind is a single season among so many others. The truth is that we have within us something much more mortal than we are, and that it is this, all the same, which is all-important. Therefore we survive very much longer than we live. There are things we think we know and which yet are secrets. Do we really know what we believe? We believe in miracles. We make great efforts to struggle, to go mad. We should like to let all our good deserts be seen. We fancy that we are exceptions and that something supernatural is going to come along. But the quiet peace of the truth fixes us. The impossible becomes again the impossible. We are as silent as silence itself.

„The noblest and most fruitful work of the human intelligence is to make a clean sweep of every enforced idea — of advantages or meanings — and to go right through appearances in search of the eternal bases.“

— Henri Barbusse
Context: The noblest and most fruitful work of the human intelligence is to make a clean sweep of every enforced idea — of advantages or meanings — and to go right through appearances in search of the eternal bases. Thus you will clearly see the moral law at the beginning of all things, and the conception of justice and equality will appear to you beautiful as daylight. Strong in that supreme simplicity, you shall say: I am the people of the peoples; therefore I am the King of Kings, and I will that sovereignty flows everywhere from me, since I am might and right. I want no more despots, confessed or otherwise, great or little; I know, and I want no more.

„It is not true, it is not true.“

— Henri Barbusse
Context: By what right does carnal love say, "I am your hearts and minds as well, and we are indissoluble, and I sweep all along with my strokes of glory and defeat; I am Love!"? It is not true, it is not true. Only by violence does it seize the whole of thought; and the poets and lovers, equally ignorant and dazzled, dress it up in a grandeur and profundity which it has not. The heart is strong and beautiful, but it is mad and it is a liar. Moist lips in transfigured faces murmur, "It's grand to be mad!" No, you do not elevate aberration into an ideal, and illusion is always a stain, whatever the name you lend it.

Pubblicità

„The dead are specters of the living, but the living are specters of the dead.“

— Henri Barbusse
Context: I am not in pain. I am extraordinarily calm; I am drunk with tranquillity. Are they dead, all — those? I do not know. The dead are specters of the living, but the living are specters of the dead. Something warm is licking my hand. The black mass which overhangs me is trembling. It is a foundered horse, whose great body is emptying itself, whose blood is flowing like poor touches of a tongue on to my hand.

„No, you do not elevate aberration into an ideal, and illusion is always a stain, whatever the name you lend it.“

— Henri Barbusse
Context: By what right does carnal love say, "I am your hearts and minds as well, and we are indissoluble, and I sweep all along with my strokes of glory and defeat; I am Love!"? It is not true, it is not true. Only by violence does it seize the whole of thought; and the poets and lovers, equally ignorant and dazzled, dress it up in a grandeur and profundity which it has not. The heart is strong and beautiful, but it is mad and it is a liar. Moist lips in transfigured faces murmur, "It's grand to be mad!" No, you do not elevate aberration into an ideal, and illusion is always a stain, whatever the name you lend it.

„War will come again after this one. It will come again as long as it can be determined by people other than those who fight.“

— Henri Barbusse
Context: War will come again after this one. It will come again as long as it can be determined by people other than those who fight. The same causes will produce the same effects, and the living will have to give up all hope.

„We've seen too much to remember.“

— Henri Barbusse
Context: The paralysis of cold was passing away from the knot of sufferers, though the light no longer made any progress over the great irregular marsh of the lower plain. The desolation proceeded, but not the day. Then he who spoke sorrowfully, like a bell, said. "It'll be no good telling about it, eh? They wouldn't believe you; not out of malice or through liking to pull your leg, but because they couldn't. When you say to 'em later, if you live to say it, 'We were on a night job and we got shelled and we were very nearly drowned in mud,' they'll say, 'Ah!' And p'raps they'll say. 'You didn't have a very spicy time on the job.' And that's all. No one can know it. Only us." "No, not even us, not even us!" some one cried. "That's what I say, too. We shall forget — we're forgetting already, my boy!" "We've seen too much to remember." "And everything we've seen was too much. We're not made to hold it all. It takes its damned hook in all directions. We're too little to hold it." "You're right, we shall forget! Not only the length of the big misery, which can't be calculated, as you say, ever since the beginning, but the marches that turn up the ground and turn it again, lacerating your feet and wearing out your bones under a load that seems to grow bigger in the sky, the exhaustion until you don't know your own name any more, the tramping and the inaction that grind you, the digging jobs that exceed your strength, the endless vigils when you fight against sleep and watch for an enemy who is everywhere in the night, the pillows of dung and lice — we shall forget not only those, but even the foul wounds of shells and machine-guns, the mines, the gas, and the counter-attacks. At those moments you're full of the excitement of reality, and you've some satisfaction. But all that wears off and goes away, you don't know how and you don't know where, and there's only the names left, only the words of it, like in a dispatch." "That's true what he says," remarks a man, without moving his head in its pillory of mud. When I was on leave, I found I'd already jolly well forgotten what had happened to me before. There were some letters from me that I read over again just as if they were a book I was opening. And yet in spite of that, I've forgotten also all the pain I've had in the war. We're forgetting-machines. Men are things that think a little but chiefly forget. That's what we are." "Then neither the other side nor us'll remember! So much misery all wasted!" This point of view added to the abasement of these beings on the shore of the flood, like news of a greater disaster, and humiliated them still more. "Ah, if one did remember!" cried some one. "If we remembered," said another, "there wouldn't be any more war."

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