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15 Insightful Quotes from V. S. Naipaul

Sir V. S. Naipaul is a Trinidadian-British writer of Indian descent born on August 17, 1932 in Trinidad and Tobago. He has published more than 30 non-fiction and fiction books, in which many of his works often set in bleak developing countries, in novels such as A House for Mr Biswas, In a Free State, and A Bend in the River. Sir Naipaul received the 1971 Booker Prize for In a Free State, the 2001 Nobel Prize in Literature for Half a Life and he was knighted in 1989. Today we compiled 15 insightful quotes from the revered writer:

 

On life:

On life:
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"Life doesn't have a neat beginning and a tidy end; life is always going on. You should begin in the middle and end in the middle, and it should be all there."

 

On the world:

"The world is always in movement."

"It is wrong to have an ideal view of the world. That's where the mischief starts. That's where everything starts unravelling."

"The world is what it is; men who are nothing, who allow themselves to become nothing, have no place in it."

 

On ignorance:

"People can live very simple lives, can't they? Tucked away, without thinking. I think the world is what you enter when you think - when you become educated, when you question - because you can be in the big world and be utterly provincial."

 

On personal honesty:

On personal honesty:
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"The only lies for which we are truly punished are those we tell ourselves."

"You can't deny what you've learned; you can't deny your travels; you can'’t deny the nature of your life."

 

On people:

"Everybody is interesting for an hour, but few people can last more than two."

 

On his creative process:

"I have told people who ask for lectures that I have no lecture to give. And that is true. It might seem strange that a man who has dealt in words and emotions and ideas for nearly fifty years shouldn't have a few to spare, so to speak. But everything of value about me is in my books. Whatever extra there is in me at any given moment isn't fully formed. I am hardly aware of it; it awaits the next book. It will - with luck - come to me during the actual writing, and it will take me by surprise."

"To this day, if you ask me how I became a writer, I cannot give you an answer. To this day, if you ask me how a book is written, I cannot answer. For long periods, if I didn't know that somehow in the past I had written a book, I would have given up."

"I feel that when a subject is quite big, one look is not enough. One should have a second take."

 

On fiction:

On fiction:
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"An autobiography can distort, facts can be realigned. But fiction never lies. It reveals the writer totally."

 

On history:

"Men need history; it helps them to have an idea of who they are. But history, like sanctity, can reside in the heart; it is enough that there is something there."

 

On our identity:

"One isn't born one's self. One is born with a mass of expectations, a mass of other people's ideas - and you have to work through it all."

"After all, we make ourselves according to the ideas we have of our possibilities."

 

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It doesn't matter how I begin my poems because by the end they are all about you

It doesn't matter how I begin my poems because by  the end they are all about you

You are perfect exactly as you are with all your flaws and problems there's no need to change anything all you need to change is the thought that you have to change

You are perfect exactly as you are with all your flaws and problems there's no need to change anything all you need to change is the thought that you have to change

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