Maurice Blanchot quotes

  • Weak thoughts, weak desires: he felt their force.
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #Desire #Weak #Force

  • I lean over you, your equal, offering you a mirror for your perfect nothingness, for your shadows which are neither light nor absence of light, for this void which contemplates. To all that which you are, and, for our language, are not, I add a consciousness. I make you experience your supreme identity as a relationship, I name you and define you. You become a delicious passivity.
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #Light #Offering #Names

  • If nothing were substituted for everything, it would still be too much and too little.
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #Littles #Too Much #Stills

  • Express only that which cannot be expressed. Leave it unexpressed)
    -- Maurice Blanchot

  • We can never put enough distance between ourselves and what we love. To think that God is, is still to think of him as present; this is a thought according to our measure, destined only to console us. It is much more fitting to think that God is not, just as we must love him purely enough that we could be indifferent to the fact that he should not be. It is for this reason that the atheist is closer to God than the believer.
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #Atheist #Distance #Thinking

  • What if what has been said one time not only does not cease to be said but always recommences, and not only recommences but also imposes upon us the idea that nothing has ever truly begun, having from the beginning begun by beginning again.
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #Ideas #What If #Doe

  • Literature professes to be important while at the same time considering itself an object of doubt. It confirms itself as it disparages itself. It seeks itself: this is more than it has a right to do, because literature may be one of those things which deserve to be found but not to be sought.
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #Doubt #Important #Literature

  • The disaster... is what escapes the very possibility of experience—it is the limit of writing. This must be repeated: the disaster de-scribes.
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #Writing #Limits #Possibility

  • A writer never reads his work. For him, it is the unreadable, a secret, and he cannot remain face to face with it. A secret, because he is separated from it.
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #Secret #Faces

  • The disaster ruins everything, all the while leaving everything intact.
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #Leaving #Ruins #Disaster

  • The Journal is not essentially a confession, a story about oneself. It is a Memorial. What does the writer have to remember? Himself, who he is when he is not writing, when he is living his daily life, when he is alive and real, and not dying and without truth.
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #Real #Writing #Memorial

  • The less manifest the work, the stronger: as though a secret law demanded it always be hidden in what it shows, thus showing what must remain hidden, only showing it, in the end, by dissimulation.
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #Strength #Law #Secret

  • To see was terrifying, and to stop seeing tore me apart from my forehead to my throat.
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #Throat #Foreheads

  • I wanted to see something in full daylight; I was sated with the pleasure and comfort of the half light; I had the same desire for the daylight as for water and air. And if seeing was fire, I required the plenitude of fire, and if seeing would infect me with madness, I madly wanted that madness.
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #Light #Air #Fire

  • A writer who writes, ''I am alone''... can be considered rather comical. It is comical for a man to recognize his solitude by addressing a reader and by using methods that prevent the individual from being alone. The word alone is just as general as the word bread. To pronounce it is to summon to oneself the presence of everything the word excludes.
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #Writing #Men #Solitude

  • Every artist is linked to a mistake with which he has a particular intimacy. All art draws its origin from an exceptional fault, each work is the implementation of this original fault, from which comes a risky plenitude and new light.
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #Art #Mistake #Light

  • My being subsists only from a supreme point of view which is precisely incompatible with my point of view. The perspective in which I fade away for my eyes restores me as a complete image for the unreal eye to which I deny all images. A complete image with reference to a world devoid of image which imagines me in the absence of any imaginable figure. The being of a nonbeing of which I am the infinitely small negation which it instigates as its profound harmony. In the night shall I become the universe?
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #Eye #Night #Views

  • As reason returned to me, memory came with it, and I saw that even on the worst days, when I thought I was utterly and completely miserable, I was nevertheless, and nearly all the time, extremely happy. That gave me something to think about. The discovery was not a pleasant one. It seemed to me that I was losing a great deal. I asked myself, wasn't I sad, hadn't I felt my life breaking up? Yes, that had been true; but each minute, when I stayed without moving in a corner of the room, the cool of the night and the stability of the ground made me breathe and rest on gladness.
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #Memories #Moving #Night

  • Lovers of painting and lovers of music are people who openly display their preference like a delectable ailment that isolates them and makes them proud.
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #People #Proud #Lovers

  • To write is to make oneself the echo of what cannot cease speaking - and since it cannot, in order to become its echo I have, in a way, to silence it. I bring to this incessant speech the decisiveness, the authority of my own silence.
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #Writing #Order #Echoes

  • But my silence is real. If I hid it from you, you would find it again a little farther on.
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #Real #Silence #Littles

  • A story? No. No stories, never again.
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #Stories

  • There is between sleep and us something like a pact, a treaty with no secret clauses, and according to this convention it is agreed that, far from being a dangerous, bewitching force, sleep will become domesticated and serve as an instrument of our power to act. We surrender to sleep, but in the way that the master entrusts himself to the slave who serves him.
    -- Maurice Blanchot

    #Sleep #Insomnia #Secret