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S through Z
He will deal harshly by a stranger who has not been himself often a traveller or stranger.
Edward Said (U.S. educator and essayist, 1935- )
Since the 1960s, we have seen the failure of the melting pot ideology. This ideology suggested that different historical, cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds could be subordinated to a larger ideology or social amalgam which is "America." This concept obviously did not work, because paradoxically America encourages a politics of contestation.
Geoffrey Sampson (British linguist, 1944- )
To my mind by far the greatest danger in scholarship...is not that the individual may fail to master the thought of a school but that a school may succeed in mastering the thought of the individual.
Bernice Sandler (U.S. gender discrimination scholar)
Sex prejudice is so ingrained in our society that many who practice it are simply unaware that they are hurting. It is the last socially acceptable prejudice.
Margaret Sanger (U.S. social activist, 1879-1966)
Woman must not accept; she must challenge. She must not be awed by that which has been built up around her; she must reverence that woman in her which struggles for expression.
George Santayana (Spanish-born American philosopher and poet, 1863-1952)
A man's feet must be planted in his country, but his eyes should survey the world.
Anne Wilson Schaef (U.S. psychotherapist and activist, 1934- )
Differences challenge assumptions.
Arthur Schlesinger, Jr. (U.S. historian, 1917- )
People who claw their way to the top are not likely to find very much wrong with the system that enabled them to rise.
Arthur Schopenhauer (German philosopher, 1788-1860)
Every man takes the limits of his own field of vision for the limits of the world.
I have a brain and a uterus, and I use both.
Sarah Schulman (U.S. journalist, 1958- )
Since the most important element of any concept is that its originating question be appropriately framed, any theory demanding an explanation for homosexuality is a problematic one because it maintains our existence as a category of deviance. I mean, no one is running around trying to figure out why some people like sports, for example.
Carl Schurz (German-born U.S. political writer, 1829-1906)
From the equality of rights springs identity of our highest interests; you cannot subvert your neighbor's rights without striking a dangerous blow at your own.
Hazel Scott (U.S. pianist, 1920-1981)
Who ever walked behind anyone to freedom? If we can't go hand in hand, I don't want to go.
Seattle (Suquamish chief, 1786-1866)
At night when the streets of your cities and villages are silent and you think them deserted, they will throng with the returning hosts that once filled them and still love this beautiful land. The white man will never be alone.
Haile Selassie (Ethiopian emperor, 1892-1975)
Throughout history it has been the inaction of those who could have acted, the indifference of those who should have known better, the silence of the voice of justice when it mattered most, that has made it possible for evil to triumph.
Ousmane Sembane (Sengalese writer, 1923- )
It isn't those who are taken by force, put in chains, and sold as slaves who are the real slaves; it is those who will accept it, morally and physically.
Lucious Annaeus Seneca (4 B.C.-A.D. 65)
We are mad, not only individually, but nationally. We check manslaughter and isolated murders; but what of war and the much vaunted crime of slaughtering whole peoples?
Anna Sewell (English writer, 1820-1878)
My doctrine is this, that if we see cruelty or wrong that we have the power to stop, and do nothing, we make ourselves sharers in the guilt.
William Shakespeare (English playwright, 1564-1616)
Hath not a Jew eyes? Hath not a Jew hands, organs, dimensions, senses, affections, passions, fed with the same food, hurt with the same weapons, subject to the same diseases, healed by the same means, warmed and cooled by the same winter and summer, as a Christian is? If you prick us, do we not bleed? If you tickle us, do we not laugh? If you poison us, do we not die? And if you wrong us, shall we not revenge?
Ntozake Shange (U.S. poet and playwright, 1948- )
i found god in myself
The worst sin towards our fellow creatures is not to hate them, but to be indifferent to them: that's the essence of inhumanity.
Gail Sheehy (U.S. writer and journalist, 1937- )
If we don't change, we don't grow. If we don't grow, we aren't really living.
Ruth Sidransky (U.S. writer, 1929- )
I do prefer "stone deaf"; stones may be mute, but they are warm in the sun, they feel something in the palm. It is a piece of the earth, attached to God. I do not know what the pedants mean when they write "profoundly deaf" to describe the person who has never heard a sound. Deaf is deaf and silence is forever.
Charles Simmons (U.S. author, 1924- )
Bigotry and intolerance, silenced by argument, endeavors to silence by persecution, in old days by fire and sword, in modern days by the tongue.
Sitting Bull (Dakota Sioux Chief, c. 1834-1890)
Go back home where you came from. This country is mine, and I intend to stay here and to raise this country full of grown people.
B.F. Skinner (U.S. behavioral psychologist, 1904-1990)
Unable to understand how or why the person we see behaves as he does, we attribute his behavior to a person we cannot see, whose behavior we cannot explain either but about whom we are not inclined to ask questions.
Adam Smith (Scottish political economist and philosopher, 1723-1790)
To found a great empire for the sole purpose of raising up a people of customers, may at first sight appear a project fit only for a nation of shopkeepers. It is, however, a project altogether unfit for a nation of shopkeepers; but extremely fit for a nation whose government is influenced by shopkeepers.
Lillian Smith (U.S. writer and activist, 1897-1966)
When you stop learning, stop listening, stop looking and asking questions, always new questions, then it is time to die.
Smohalla (Wanapam prophet, 1815-1907)
God told me to look after my people--all are my people.
Dorothy Sölle (German theologian, 1929- )
Religion does not confirm that there are hungry people in the world; it interprets the hungry to be our brethren whom we allow to starve.
Susan Sontag (U.S. writer and filmmaker, 1933- )
Like the effects of industrial pollution and the new system of global financial markets, the AIDS crisis is evidence of a world in which nothing important is regional, local, limited; in which everything that can circulate does, and every problem is, or is destined to become, worldwide.
Sophocles (Greek playwright, 496-406 B.C.)
Ugly deeds are taught by ugly deeds.
Robert Southey (English journalist, 1774-1843)
How little do they see what is, who frame their hasty judgments upon that which seems.
Thomas Sowell (U.S. economist, 1930- )
Whenever someone refers to me as someone "who happens to be black," I wonder if they realize that both my parents are black. If I had turned out to be Scandinavian or Chinese, people would have wondered what was going on.
Wole Soyinka (Nigerian writer, 1934- )
I have one abiding religion--human liberty.
Herbert Spencer (British philosopher and sociologist, 1820-1903)
No one can be perfectly free till all are free; no one can be perfectly moral till all are moral; no one can be perfectly happy till all are happy.
Baruch Spinoza (Dutch philosopher, 1632-1677)
Peace is not an absence of war, it is a virtue, a state of mind, a disposition for benevolence, confidence, justice.
Luther Standing Bear (Oglala Sioux writer, 1868-1939)
White men seem to have difficulty in realizing that people who live differently from themselves still might be traveling the upward and progressive road of life.
Philip Dormer Stanhope (English statesman, 1694-1773)
The knowledge of the world is only to be acquired in the world, and not in a closet.
We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men and women are created equal.
Gertrude Stein (U.S. writer, 1874-1946)
"Native" always means people who belong someplace else, because they had once belonged somewhere. That shows that the white race does not really think they belong anywhere, because they think of everybody else as native.
Clearly no one knows what leadership has gone undiscovered in women of all races, and in black and other minority men.
Deborah Prothrow-Stith (U.S. public health leader, 1954- )
We cannot silence the voices that we do not like hearing. We can, however, do everything in our power to make certain that other voices are heard.
Barbara Streisand (U.S. singer and actress, 1942- )
Just imagine how boring life would be if we were all the same. My idea of a perfect world is one in which we really appreciated each other's differences: Short, tall; Democrat, Republican; black, white; gay, straight--a world in which all of us are equal, but definitely not the same.
Harriet Beecher Stowe (U.S. novelist and abolitionist, 1811-1896)
All men are free and equal in the grave, if it comes to that.
Anna Louise Strong (U.S. journalist, 1885-1970)
They say the Pharaohs built the pyramids Do you think one Pharaoh dropped one bead of sweat? We built the pyramids for the Pharaohs and we're building for them yet.
Susanna Sturgis ()
Take away black studies, women's studies, ethnic studies, Jewish studies, labor history, Chicano studies, Native American studies: what is left is what has passed for "history" with no qualifying adjective, the story of those whose belonging we never disputed.
Achmad Sukarno (Indonesian politician, 1902-1970)
There is not one state truly alive if it is not as if a cauldron burns and boils in its representative body, and if there is no clash of convictions in it.
Charles Sumner (U.S. senator, 1811-1874)
The age of chivalry has gone; the age of humanity has come.
Jonathan Swift (Irish author and satirist, 1667-1745)
We have just enough religion to make us hate, but not enough to make us love one another.
Bigotry tries to keep truth safe in its hand with a grip that kills it.
Deborah Tannen (U.S. teacher and writer, 1945- )
We all know we are unique individuals, but we tend to see others as representatives of groups.
Richard Henry Tawney (British historian, 1880-1962)
It is not till it is discovered that high individual incomes will not purchase the mass of mankind immunity from cholera, typhus, and ignorance, still less secure them the positive advantages of educational opportunity and economic security, that slowly and reluctantly, amid prophecies of moral degeneration and economic disaster, society begins to make collective provision for needs which no ordinary individual, even if he works overtime all his life, can provide himself.
Tecumseh (Shawnee chief, c. 1768-1813)
I am the maker of my own fortune, and Oh! that I could make that of my Red People, and of my country, as great as the conceptions of my mind, when I think of the spirit that rules the universe. I would not then come to Governor Harrison to ask him to tear up the treaty, and to obliterate the landmark, but I would say to him, "Sir, you have the liberty to return to your own country."
Ten Bears (Yamparika Comanche, 1792-1872)
Great Spirit--I want no blood upon my land to stain the grass. I want it all clear and pure, and I wish it so, that all who go through among my people may find it peaceful when they come, and leave peacefully when they go.
Teresa of Avila (Spanish nun, 1515-1582)
Seldom or never is a poor man honored by the world; however worthy of honor he may be, he is apt rather to be despised by it.
Dorothy Thompson (U.S. journalist, 1894-1961)
Passitivity and quietism are invitations to war.
Henry David Thoreau (U.S. essayist and poet, 1817-1862)
Things do not change, we do.
Alvin Toffler (U.S. futurist, 1928- )
The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.
Leo Tolstoy (Russian novelist, 1828-1910)
Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.
Tomochichi (Creek Chief, 1650-1729)
The more I consider the condition of the white men, the more fixed becomes my opinion that, instead of gaining, they have lost much by subjecting themselves to what they call the laws and regulations of civilized socieities.
Jean Toomer (U.S. metaphysician, 1844-1967)
Men are apt to idolize or fear that which they cannot understand, especially if it be a woman.
D. Elton Trueblood (U.S. Quaker scholar, 1900-1994)
A man has made at least a start on discovering the meaning of human life when he plants shade trees under which he knows full well he will never sit.
That man over there says that women need to be helped into carriages, and lifted over ditches, and to have the best place everywhere. Nobody ever helps me into carriages, or over mud puddles, or gives me any best place! And ain't I a woman?
Chang Tsai (Chinese philosopher, 1021-1077)
In everything that moves through the universe, I see my own body, and in everything that governs the universe, my own soul. All men are my brethren, and all things my companions.
Harriet Tubman (U.S. abolitionist, c. 1823-1913)
When I found I had crossed that line, I looked at my hands to see if I was the same person. There was such a glory over everything.
If speaking is silver, then listening is gold.
Henry McNeal Turner (U.S. editor, 1833-1915)
The Fourth of July--memorable in the history of our nation as the great day of independence to its countrymen--had no claim upon our sympathies. They made a flag and threw it to the heavens and bid it float forever; but every star in it was against us.
Bishop Desmond Tutu (South African activist and religious leader, 1931- )
If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor. If an elephant has its foot on the tail of a mouse and you say that you are neutral, the mouse will not appreciate your neutrality.
To be good is noble; but to show others how to be good is nobler and no trouble.
The day began with dismal doubt
Hail, Guest! We ask not what thou art;
We call for the end of bigotry as we know it. The end of racism as we know it. The end of child abuse in the family as we know it. The end of sexism as we know it. The end of homophobia as we know it. We stand for freedom as we have yet to know it. And we will not be denied.
Varahamihira (Indian astronomer, 505-587)
Everyone speaks of himself with regard to his ownself, "I am above and the others are below," whilst all of them are around the globe like the blossom springing on the branches of the Kadamba tree.
Paul Varnell (U.S. columnist and gay rights advocate)
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said that homosexuality 'is a lifestyle I don't agree with.' This is a trope you hear from the religious right a good deal, and it seems to have entered the conservative mainstream, rolling easily off the tongue. But it is a very odd thing to say. No one (speaking rationally) says, 'I don't agree with the Pacific Ocean' or 'I don't agree with the Grand Canyon.' Facts are not things you agree or disagree with. You can agree or disagree with viewpoints, thoughts or ideas, but homosexuality is not a viewpoint or an idea. It is a thing, an attribute, a nature, a fact.
Gore Vidal (U.S. writer, 1925- )
We must declare ourselves, become known; allow the world to discover this subterranean life of ours which connects kings and farm boys, artists and clerks. Let them see that the important thing is not the object of love but the emotion itself.
Vivekananda (Indian religious leader, 1863-1902)
Unity in variety is the plan of the universe.
Gerald Vizenor (Chippewa poet and novelist, 1934- )
Race is an invention, not a noticeable genetic presence, and cultural traits are brute concoctions of the social sciences.
Voltaire (French satirist, essayist, and historian, 1694-1778)
Every man is gulity of the good he didn't do.
Sometimes in the evening I sit, looking out on the big Missouri. The sun sets, and dusk steals over the water. In the shadows I seem again to see our Indian village, with smoke curling upward from the earth lodges, and in the river's roar I hear the yells of warriors, and the laughter of little children as of old. It is but an old woman's dream. Then I see but shadows and hear only the roar of the river, and tears come into my eyes. Our Indian life, I know, is gone forever.
In order to be able to live at all in America I must be unafraid to live anywhere in it, and I must be able to live in the fashion and with whom I choose.
David Walker (U.S. abolitionist, 1785-1830)
Let no man of us budge one step, and let slaveholders come to beat us from our country. America is more our country, than it is the whites--we have enriched it with our blood and tears. The greatest riches in all America have arisen from our blood and tears.
Lou Ann Walker (U.S. author and sign language interpreter, 1952- )
Theories and goals of education don't mean a whit if you don't consider your students to be human beings.
Wyatt T. Walker (U.S. civil rights activist, 1929- )
The challenge of this age is to resist and conquer in each of our own beings the racist brainwashing that is still active in our minds.
Charles Dudley Warner (U.S. writer, 1829-1900)
You want to hate somebody, if you can, just to keep your powers of discrimination bright, and to save yourself from becoming a mere mush of good-nature.
Augustus Washington (U.S. daguerreotypist, c. 1820-1875)
I know this was the soil on which I was born: but I have nothing to glorify this as my country. I have no pride of ancestry to point back to. Our forefathers did not come here as did the Pilgrim fathers, in search of a place where they could enjoy civil and religious liberties.
In all things that are purely social we can be as separate as the fingers, yet one as the hand in all things essential to mutual progress.
Simone Weil (French philosopher and activist, 1933- )
The most important part of teaching is to teach what it is to know.
William Wells-Brown (U.S. abolitionist, 1815-1884)
This is called 'the land of the free and the home of the brave'; it is called the 'asylum of the oppressed,' and some have been foolish enough to call it the 'Cradle of Liberty.' If it is the 'Cradle of Liberty,' they have rocked the child to death.
Cornel West (U.S. professor and social critic, 1953- )
Those who came to the United States didn't realize they were white until they got here. They were told they were white. They had to learn they were white. An Irish peasant coming from British imperial abuse in Ireland during the potato famine in the 1840s, arrives in the United States. You ask him or her what they are. They say, "I am Irish." No, you're white. "What do you mean, I am white?" And they point me out. "Oh, I see what you mean. This is a strange land."
Rebecca West (British journalist and novelist, 1892-1983)
People call me a feminist whenever I express sentiments that differentiate me from a doormat or a prostitute.
West African Proverb
Not to know is bad; not to wish to know is worse.
E.B. White (U.S. humorist and essayist, 1899-1985)
The trouble with the profit system has always been that it was highly unprofitable to most people.
Katharine Whitehorn (British journalist, 1926- )
As ridiculous to approve of property and let a few men have a grossly unfair share of it, as say you are all for marriage, and then let one man have all the wives.
Faith Whittlesey (U.S. ambassador, 1939- )
Remember, Ginger Rogers did everything Fred Astaire did, but she did it backwards and in high heels.
Elie Wiesel (Rumanian-born U.S. writer, 1928- )
I have learned the guilt of indifference. The opposite of love is not hate but indifference.
Ralph Wiley (U.S. sports and literary writer)
Truth knows no color; it appeals to intelligence.
Wendell L. Willkie (U.S. politician, 1892-1944)
No man has a right in America to treat any other man "tolerantly" for tolerance is the assumption of superiority. Our liberties are equal rights of every citizen.
Harold Wilson (British politician, 1916- )
He who rejects change is the architect of decay. The only human institution which rejects progress is the cemetery.
Jeanette Winterson (English author, 1959- )
Any measurement must take into account the position of the observer. There is no such thing as measurement absolute, there is only measurement relative.
Naomi Wolf (U.S. author, 1962- )
The more legal and material hindrances women have broken through, the more strictly and heavily and cruelly images of female beauty have come to weigh upon them.
Mary Wollstonecraft (English novelist, 1759-1797)
Men, in general, seem to employ their reason to justify prejudices...rather than to root them out.
Merle Woo (U.S. writer)
Most of the time when "universal" is used, it's just a euphamism for "white"; white themes, white significance, white culture.
Carter G. Woodson (U.S. historian and educator, 1875-1950)
The mere imparting of information is not education. Above all things, the effort must result in making a man think and do for himself.
Virginia Woolf (British author, 1882-1941)
I would venture to guess that Anon, who wrote so many poems without signing them, was often a woman.
Frances Wright (English writer, 1795-1852)
Equality! Where is it, if not in education? Equal rights! They cannot exist without equality of instruction.
Richard Wright (U.S. novelist, 1908-1960)
We had our own civilization in Africa before we were captured and carried off to this land. We smelted iron, danced, made music and folk poems; we sculpted, worked in glass, spun cotton and wool, wove baskets and cloth. We invented a medium of exchange, mined silver and gold, made pottery and cutlery, we fashioned tools and utensils of brass, bronze, ivory, quartz, and granite. We had our own literature, our own systems of law, religion, medicine, science, and education.
Elizabeth Wurtzel (U.S. journalist, 1967- )
The measure of our mindfulness, the touchstone for sanity in this society, is our level of productivity, our attention to responsibility, our ability to plain and simple hold down a job. If you're still at the point when you're even just barely going through the motions--showing up at work, paying the bills--you are still okay or okay enough. A desire not to acknowledge depression in ourselves or those close to us--better known these days as denial, is such a strong urge that plenty of people prefer to think that until you are actually flying out of a window, you don't have a problem.
Teaching is not filling up a pail, it is lighting a fire.
If all pulled in one direction, the world would keel over.
Andrew Young (U.S. minister and activist, 1932- )
We were trying to transform America, not triumph over white folk.
Coleman Young (U.S. politician, 1923- )
We must take the profit out of prejudice.
Whitney Young (U.S. director of the National Urban League, 1921-1972)
The danger is that people may mistake what is basically a change in vocabulary for a change in behavior, practices, and attitudes. While practically all Americans have learned to talk inoffensively, not enough have learned to think differently, nor act positively.
We do not want the peace of slaves nor the peace of the grave.
Howard Zinn (U.S. historian and activist, 1922- )
The historian's distortion is more than technical, it is ideological; it is released into a world of contending interest, where any chosen emphasis supports some kind of interest, whether economic or political or racial, or national or sexual.
He who hates, hates himself.