Books don't move you? Perhaps you haven't found just the right books yet. It's not too late to feel the pain, or as Kafka said: "What are you reading for but to be wounded?" Start with writers who were...
Born this week:
Konstantin Paustowski, Russia
Leonid Leonov, Russia
"I am a girl of my time... maybe just an ordinary girl, but I am the world's tomorrow... and you should stand up, yes, stand up when you talk to me, if you have a trace of self-respect left!"
Edgar Wallace, UK
"What is a highbrow? He is a man who has found something more interesting than women."
Marquis de Sade, France
"The law which attempts a man's life [capital punishment] is impractical, unjust, inadmissible. It has never repressed crime—for a second crime is every day committed at the foot of the scaffold."
Thomas Hardy, UK
"A lover without indiscretion is no lover at all."
Karl Gjellerup, Denmark
"There are certain books in the world which every searcher for truth must know: the Bible, the Critique of Pure Reason, the Origin of Species, and Karl Marx's Capital."
Max Aub, Spain
Federico Garcia Lorca, Spain
"You have always been smart. You have always looked for the worst in people, and have been quick to notice when people are up to no good... But in the case of your children, you are blind."
Died this week:
"Man is free at the instant he wants to be."
Herman Broch, Austria
"What's important is promising something to the people, not actually keeping those promises. The people have always lived on hope alone."
Hugh Walpole, UK
"The whole secret of life is to be interested in one thing profoundly and a thousand other things well."
Martin Andersen Nexo, Denmark
"Every mother hopes that her daughter will marry a better man than she did, and is convinced that her son will never find a wife as good as his father did."
Anna Seghers, Germany
Franz Kafka, Austria
"I think we ought to read only the kind of books that wound and stab us. If the book we are reading doesn't wake us up with a blow on the head, what are we reading it for?"
Frans Eemil Sillanpää, Finland
Stephen Crane, USA
"Every sin is the result of collaboration."
William Porter (O. Henry), USA
"There are a few editor men with whom I am privileged to come in contact. It has not been long since it was their habit to come in contact with me. There is a difference."
Georges Feydeau, France