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Emily Hahn

  • History is a progressive simplication and selection.

  • Those who are chosen by fate to act on the stage of public life should be provided with thick skins or with preoccupations that help them to ignore the millions of eyes that are always following every move.

  • If it were not for a man's contemporaries we would be forced in our search for his likeness to believe implicitly in his own records, a dangerous proceeding because modesty warps the memory, and mirrors are not so good as human eyes.

  • Seldom do the myriad facts of influences of a human relationship arrange themselves into a form convenient for story-telling; that is the chief reason fiction must always mislead its readers.

  • ... he was overwhelmingly curious. He had a mind like a child's, or a puppy's, or an old-fashioned novelist's, prying into everything and weaving stories around whatever caught his attention.

  • I have never heard two firsthand reports of childbirth that sounded remotely alike. The only thing that all women seem to have in common on this subject is a kindly desire to reassure you, the novice, and a natural tendency to discuss it over and over again.

  • Ladies were ladies more by virtue of the things they didn't do than by the things they did. The other sort of woman had a different, more positive set of values.

  • When I read about some important moment or era in history, I always take it for granted that the people it happened to were aware of what was going on. In my mind's eye, I see the agricultural workers of England during the Industrial Revolution feeling the pinch and saying to each other, 'Eh, lad,' or whatever agricultural workers would say in those days, 'what dost tha expect? It's this Industrial Revolution at the bottom of it ... '

  • An enraged Briton does not paw the ground, he writes to the papers ...

Emily Hahn, Canadian writer, journalist, geologist

(1905 - 1995)

Full name: Emily Hahn Boxer.