Book burning

"The paper burns, but the words fly away."

Ben Joseph AKIBA
Jewish Palestinian religious leader (A.D. C. 50- C.135)

"You don't have to burn books to destroy a culture. Just get people to stop reading them."

U.S. science-fiction writer (1920-)

"There is more than one way to burn a book. And the world is full of people running about with lit matches."

U.S. science-fiction writer (1920-)

"Somewhere the saving and putting away had to begin again and someone had to do the saving and keeping, one way or another, in books, in records, in people's heads, any way at all so long as it was safe, free from moths, silverfish, rust and dry rot, and men with matches."

U.S. science-fiction writer (1920-)

"When the regime ordered
Books with dangerous knowledge
To be burned in public and everywhere
Oxen were forced to pull, carts with books
to the bonfires, one of the persecuted poets
discovered one of the best
studying the list of the burned
disconcerted, that his books were forgotten.
He rushed to his desk, flying on wings of rage
and wrote a letter to the the authorities.
Burn me! he wrote with a quick stroke
Burn me! don't do this to me! Do not spare me!
Have I not always reported the truth in my books?
Yet now you treat me as were I a liar!
I command you: Burn me! "

Bertolt BRECHT
Poem titled "The Bookburning" (Die Bücherverbrennung)
German dramatist and poet (1898-1956)

"There are worse crimes than burning books. One of them is not reading them. "

Joseph Alexandrovitch BRODSKY
Russian-American poet, b. St. Petersburg and exiled 1972 (1940-1996)

"Don't join the book burners. Do not think you are going to conceal thoughts by concealing evidence that they ever existed."

American general and 34th President of the United States (

"Every burned book enlightens the world."

Ralph Waldo EMERSON
American poet and essayist (1803-1882)

"Castro can destroy everything, except for books. He may censor, ban or even burn them, but the ideas contained in books can never be destroyed. As José Martí once said, paper trenches are stronger than those built in stone."

Cuban writer, poet, journalist, art critic (1921- )

"What progress we are making. In the Middle Ages they would have burned me. Now they are content with burning my books."

Sigmund FREUD
Austrian psychiatrist (1856-1939)

"... the military don't burn books any more: they sell them to the paper manufacturers. The paper companies shred them, pulp them and put them back on the market for consumption. It is not true that Marx, Freud or Piaget are unavailable to the public. In book form they are not. But they are in the form of serviettes."

Uruguayan writer, story-teller, journalist and historian (1940-)

"Wherever they burn books they will also, in the end, burn human beings."

Heinrich HEINE
Almansor: A Tragedy, 1823
Used as inscription on memorial at Dachau concentration camp
German poet (1797-1856)

"Books that you may carry to the fire, and hold readily in your hand, are the most useful after all."

American clergyman, educator, and philosopher (1696-1772)

"There were many beautiful books, but as they contained nothing but superstitions and falsehoods of the Devil, we burnt them."

Diego de LANDA
Bishop of Yucatan

Last update: 26 January 2007

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