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Octavia E. Butler Quotes

41 of the best book quotes from Octavia E. Butler
  1. #1
    “Prodigy is, at its essence, adaptability and persistent, positive obsession. Without persistence, what remains is an enthusiasm of the moment. Without adaptability, what remains may be channeled into destructive fanaticism. Without positive obsession, there is nothing at all.”
  2. #2
    “Better to stay alive,” I said. “At least while there’s a chance to get free.”
  3. #3
    “I thought of the sleeping pills in my bag and wondered just how great a hypocrite I was. It was so easy to advise other people to live with their pain.”
  4. #4
    “That educated didn’t mean smart. He had a point. Nothing in my education or knowledge of the future had helped me to escape. Yet in a few years an illiterate runaway named Harriet Tubman would make nineteen trips into this country and lead three hundred fugitives to freedom.”
  5. #5
    “As a kind of castaway myself, I was happy to escape into the fictional world of someone else’s trouble.”
  6. #6
    “...I realized that I knew less about loneliness than I had thought - and much less than I would know when he went away.”
  7. #7
    “But I would help him as best I could. And I would try to keep friendship with him, maybe plant a few ideas in his mind that would help both me and the people who would be his slaves in the years to come. I might even be making things easier for Alice.”
  8. #8
    “We’re going to have to fit in as best we can with the people here for as long as we have to stay. That means we’re going to have to play the roles you gave us.”
  9. #9
    “The place, the time would either kill him outright or mark him somehow.”
  10. #10
    “Rufus had caused her trouble, and now he had been rewarded for it. It made no sense. No matter how kindly he treated her now that he had destroyed her, it made no sense.”
  1. #11
    “The ease. Us, the children… I never realized how easily people could be trained to accept slavery”
  2. #12
    “Then let’s go to Las Vegas and pretend we haven’t got any relatives.”
  3. #13
    “Was I getting so used to being submissive?
  4. #14
    “I remembered suddenly the way he used to talk to his mother. If he couldn’t get what he wanted from her gently, he stopped being gentle. Why not? She always forgave him. ”
  5. #15
    “I remembered suddenly the way he used to talk to his mother. If he couldn’t get what he wanted from her gently, he stopped being gentle. Why not? She always forgave him. ”
  6. #16
    “Slavery was a long slow process of dulling.”
  7. #17
    “Tom Weylin had probably marked his son more than he knew with that whip.”
  8. #18
    “Tom Weylin had probably marked his son more than he knew with that whip.”
  9. #19
    “I remembered suddenly the way he used to talk to his mother. If he couldn’t get what he wanted from her gently, he stopped being gentle. Why not? She always forgave him. ”
  10. #20
    “Tom Weylin had probably marked his son more than he knew with that whip.”

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  1. #21
    “Frankly, it never occurred to me that I needed someone who looked like me to show me the way. I was ignorant and arrogant and persistent and the writing left me no choice at all.”
  2. #22
    “These people were my relatives, my ancestors. And this place could be my refuge.”
  3. #23
    “A lot of people seem to believe in a big-daddy-God or a big-cop-God or a big-king-God.”
  4. #24
    “I’ve never felt that it was anything other than real: discovery rather than invention.”
  5. #25
    “Lights, progress, growth, all those things we’re too hot and too poor to bother with anymore.”
  6. #26
    “Bits of the Bible had...stayed with me even after I stop believing.”
  7. #27
    “I looked at Natividad who sat a short distance away, on spread out sleepsacks, playing with her baby and talking to Zahra. She had been lucky. Did she know? How many other people were less lucky—unable to escape the master’s attentions or gain the mistress’s sympathies. How far did masters and mistresses go these days toward putting less than submissive servants in their places?”
  8. #28
    “All that you touch you change. All that you change changes you...God is change.”
  9. #29
    “I like Curtis Talcott a lot. Maybe I love him. Sometimes I think I do. He says he loves me. But if all I had to look forward to was marriage to him and babies and poverty that just keeps getting worse, I think I’d kill myself.”
  10. #30
    “The destiny of Earthseed is to take root among the stars.”
  1. #31
    “To get along with God, consider the consequences of your behavior”
  2. #32
    “They have no power to improve their lives, but they have the power to make others...miserable.”
  3. #33
    “Taking care of other people can be a god cure for nightmares.”
  4. #34
    “Crazy to live without a wall to protect you. Even in Robledo, most of the street poor—squatters, winos, junkies, homeless people in general—are dangerous. They’re desperate or crazy or both. That’s enough to make anyone dangerous.”
  5. #35
    “All struggles are essentially power struggles...two rams knocking their heads together.”
  6. #36
    “Used to think...God was only good for helping people...stand what they had to.”
  7. #37
    “We...decided to call this place Acorn.”
  8. #38
    “Moral: The weak can overcome the strong if the weak persist.”
  9. #39
    “A biological conscience is better than no conscience at all”
  10. #40
    “In order to rise from its own ashes a phoenix first must burn.”
  11. #41
    “God is change, and in the end, God does prevail. But we have something to say about the whens and the whys of that end.”

Books about slavery

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7.0
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6.0
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5.5
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5.5
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5.4
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Picture book
5.3
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Picture book
5.1
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