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Excuse Me?

  • To-day a gift is not a gift unless it is in good taste.

  • Pregnancy is difficult for women but it is even more difficult for men.

  • Another girl, still in the latency-period, had succeeded in so completely repressing her envy of her little brother's penis — an affect by which her life was entirely dominated — that even in analysis it was exceptionally difficult to detect any traces of it. All that the analyst could observe was that, whenever she had occasion to envy or be jealous of her brother, she began to play a curious imaginary game, in which she herself enacted the part of a magician, who had the power of transforming and otherwise influencing the whole world by his gestures. This child was converting envy into its opposite, into an over-insistence on her own magical powers, by means of which she avoided the painful insight into what she supposed to be her physical inferiority. ... Once this was realized, it was easy for the analyst to deduce the presence of penis envy whenever the game of magic recurred.

  • Three girl children did nothing to reconcile Ada Hicks to a fourth; and her husband, when he heard the ghastly news, stood mute and stricken, wondering why his wife always had to tell him things like that before tea when she knew that worry gave him indigestion.

  • There is a gray area in which someone's rape may be another person's bad night.

  • North America is not altogether to blame with regard to her Indians. If the Indian had been more susceptible to higher culture, violence and arms would not have been used against him, as is now the case.

    • Fredrika Bremer,
    • 1850, America of the Fifties: Letters of Fredrika Bremer ()
  • I have not, in general, much belief in the ability of woman as a creative artist. Unwritten lyrics, as [Ralph Waldo] Emerson said once when we conversed on this subject, should be her forte.

    • Fredrika Bremer,
    • 1850, America of the Fifties: Letters of Fredrika Bremer ()
  • The claim that American women are downtrodden and unfairly treated is the fraud of the century.

    • Phyllis Schlafly,
    • in Lisa Cronin Wohl, "Phyllis Schlafly: The Sweetheart of the Silent Majority," Ms. ()
  • ... the old difficulty ... has always troubled me at times, why the world is round. If it had only a brink, so that we might be always improving the hopeless ones in the rear, pushing them on gently but irresistibly, till if they positively refused to be bettered, we might improve them over the edge, out of a world which no longer wants them.

  • [On Nancy Pelosi's 'global warming fanaticism':] She has said that she's just trying to save the planet. We all know that someone did that over 2,000 years ago.

  • [To the U.S. Secretary of the Interior about the White House:] I just love what you've done with the place.

  • Always bear in mind that boys are naturally wiser than you. Regard them as intellectual beings, who have access to certain sources of knowledge of which you are deprived, and seek to derive all the benefit you can from their peculiar attainments and experience.

  • It's only when a woman surrenders her life to her husband, reveres and worships him and is willing to serve him, that she becomes really beautiful to him.

  • To do exactly as your neighbors do is the only sensible rule.

  • 'Jane Eyre' is a coarse book, I think, and one to which nobody will return.

    • Mary Russell Mitford,
    • 1849, in Henry Chorley, ed., Letters of Mary Russell Mitford, 2nd series, vol. 1 ()
  • There is little reason left for society to respect women as it once did. Women get knocked up. They don't marry. They have abortions. They go to bars. They get knocked up again.

  • You know what gets me sick and tired? The battered-woman motif. It's so misinterpreted ... everyone knows throughout the world that many of these working-class relationships where women get beat up have hot sex. They ask why she won't leave him? Maybe she won't leave him because the sex is very hot. I say we should start looking at the battered-wife motif in terms of sex.

    • Camille Paglia,
    • "The Rape Debate, Continued," Sex, Art, and American Culture ()
  • [On rape:] If it is a totally devastating psychological experience for a woman, then she doesn't have a proper attitude toward sex. It's this whole stupid feminist thing about how we are basically nurturing, benevolent people, and sex is a wonderful thing between two equals. With that kind of attitude, then of course rape is going to be a total violation of your entire life ...

    • Camille Paglia,
    • "The Rape Debate, Continued," Sex, Art, and American Culture ()
  • We could make an epic catalog of male achievements. ... If civilization had been left in female hands, we would still be living in grass huts.

  • Feminism, arguing from the milder women's view, completely misses the blood-lust in rape, the joy of violation and destruction.

  • It's patriarchal society that has freed me as a woman.

  • Hollywood is the great thing that America has done and given to the world.

    • Camille Paglia,
    • in Stewart Brand, "Scream of Consciousness," Wired ()
  • I'm someone who is on the record as being pro-pornography — all the way through kiddie porn and snuff films.

    • Camille Paglia,
    • "Crisis in the American Universities," Sex, Art, and American Culture ()
  • My anti-liberal position should not be mistaken for conservatism ...

    • Camille Paglia,
    • "Junk Bonds and Corporate Raiders: Academe in the Hour of the Wolf," Sex, Art, and American Culture ()
  • Feminism ... does not see what is for men the eroticism or fun element in rape, especially the wild, infectious delirium of gang rape.

    • Camille Paglia,
    • "The Rape Debate, Continued," Sex, Art, and American Culture ()
  • As Putin rears his head and comes into the airspace of the United States of America, where do they go? It's just right over the border, it is from Alaska that we send those out to make sure that an eye is being kept on this very powerful nation, Russia, because they are right there. They are right next to our state.

  • Smoking kills. If you're killed, you've lost a very important part of your life.

  • [As the TV commentator on the Oldsmobile Classic:] There are European players here from all over the world.

  • Our country might have been better off if it was still just men voting. There is nothing worse than a bunch of mean, hateful women.

    • Janis Lane,
    • in Jackson, Mississippi, Free Press ()
  • God has covered your bones with flesh. Your flesh is soft and warm. In your flesh there is blood. God has put skin outside, and it covers your flesh and blood like a coat. ... How kind of God it was to give you a body! I hope that your body will not get hurt. ... Will your bones break? Yes, they would, if you were to fall down from a high place, or if a cart were to go over them. .. How easy it would be to hurt your poor little body! If it were to fall into the fire, it would be burned up. If a great knife were run through your body, the blood would come out. If a great box were to fall on your head, your head would be crushed. If you were to fall out of the window, your neck would be broken. If you were not to eat some food for a few days, your little body would be very sick, your breath would stop, and you would grow cold, and you would soon be dead.

  • Well, if I were in charge, they would know that waterboarding is how we’d baptize terrorists.

  • The best ambassador is a warship.