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Popular art is normally decried as vulgar by the cultivated people of its time; then it loses favour with its original audience as a new generation grows up; then it begins to merge into the softer lighting of “quaint” and cultivated people become interested in it, and finally it begins to take on the archaic dignity of the primitive.

Northrop Frye (1912-1991) Canadian literary critic and literary theorist
Anatomy of Criticism, “Mythical Phase: Symbol as Archetype” (1957)
Added on 15-Nov-21 | Last updated 15-Nov-21
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There was really only one thing for her to say, those three words that all the terrible art, the worst pop songs and movies, the most seductive lies, can somehow never cheapen. I love you.

McEwan - I love you - wist_info quote

Ian McEwan (b. 1948) English novelist and screenwriter
“Only love and then oblivion,” The Guardian (15 Sep 2001)
Added on 9-Aug-16 | Last updated 9-Aug-16
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Alas, irreverence has been subsumed by mere grossness, at least in the so-called mass media. What we have now — to quote myself at my most pretentious — is a nimiety of scurrility with a concomitant exiguity of taste. For example, the freedom (hooray!) to say almost anything you want on television about society’s problems has been co-opted (alas!) by the freedom to talk instead about flatulence, orgasms, genitalia, masturbation, etc., etc., and to replace real comment with pop-culture references and so-called “adult” language. Irreverence is easy — what’s hard is wit.

Lehrer - whats hard is wit - wist_info quote

Tom Lehrer (b. 1928) American mathematician, satirist, songwriter
Rhino Records online chat (17 Jun 1997)
Added on 21-Jan-16 | Last updated 21-Jan-16
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You don’t have to burn books to destroy a culture. Just get people to stop reading them.

Ray Bradbury (1920-2012) American writer, futurist, fabulist
“Bradbury Still Believes in Heat of ‘Fahrenheit 451,'” interview by Misha Berson, The Seattle Times (12 Mar 1993)

Bradbury is often quoted as saying, "There are worse crimes than burning books. One of them is not reading them." I can't find an actual citation for that, though this is a very similar sentiment. That actual quotation is also attributed to Joseph Brodsky.
Added on 21-Jan-16 | Last updated 11-May-21
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