Wide World of Quotes > Camille Paglia Quotes

Camille Paglia
American academic and author
(1947- )



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A fetus is a benign tumor, a vampire who steals in order to live. The so-called miracle of birth is nature getting her own.
-- Sexual Personae (1990)

French rhetorical models are too narrow for the English tradition... The Parisian is a provincial when he pretends to speak for the universe
-- Sexual Personae (1990)

There is no true expertise in the humanities without knowing all of the humanities. Art is a vast, interconnected webwork, a fabricated tradition. Over-concentration on any one part is a distortion.
-- Book review, The New York Times, 5 May 1991

Gay men may seek sex without emotion; lesbians often end up in emotion without sex.
-- Esquire, October 1991

Teenage boys, goaded by their surging hormones ... run in packs like the primal horde. They have only a brief season of exhilarating liberty between control by their mothers and control by their wives.
-- "Homosexuality in the Fin de Siècle", Esquire, October 1991

All great art has come from mutilated egos.
-- Vanity Fair, September 1992

American universities are organized on the principle of the nuclear rather than the extended family. Graduate students are grimly trained to be technicians rather than connoisseurs. The old German style of universal scholarship is dead.
-- Sex, Art, and American Culture (1992)

I believe that history has shape, order and meaning; that exceptional men, as much as economic forces, produce change; and that passé attractions like beauty, nobility, and greatness have a shifting but continuing validity.
-- Sex, Art, and American Culture (1992)

There is no masculine power or privilige that I did not cover. But slowly, step by step, decade by decade, I was forced to acknowlege that even a woman of abnormal will cannot escape her hormonal identity.
-- Sex, Art, and American Culture (1992)

I oppose the intrusions of the state into the private realm -- such as abortion, sodomy, prostitution, pornography, drug use, or suicide, all of which I would strongly defend as matters of free choice in a representative democracy.
-- Sex, Art, and American Culture (1992), introduction

A feminist of the fin de siècle will be bawdy, streetwise, and on-the-spot confrontational, in the prankish Sixties way.
-- Sex, Art, and American Culture (1992), introduction

I like Hillary because she's kind of bitch.
-- "Kind of Bitch: Why I Like Hillary Clinton", Sunday Times magazine, 18 April 1992; reprinted in Vamps and Trumps (1994)

Feminism has become a catch-all vegetable drawer where bunches of clingy sob sisters can store their moldy neuroses.
-- "The Return of Carry Nation: Catherine Mackinnon and Andrew Dworkin", in Playboy, October 1992; reprinted in Vamps and Trumps (1994)

Nothing important in high art is happening now, but I worshipped the high art of the past.
-- "My Cultural Life", The Guardian (London), 30 January 1998, Friday Review


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The selection of the above quotes and the writing of the accompanying notes was performed by the author David Paul Wagner.

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